A Case Study on Warburton Bread

Introduction

Marketing management is referred to the process of generating strategies as well as planning for products or services for their advertisement and promotion to achieve sales by reaching the target customer segment. Thus, it is important to help marketers understand the specific needs and demands of the consumers so that the products and services are accordingly developed to reach potential consumers. In this assignment, the marketing manager with respect to Warburton's gluten-free bread is being discussed to understand the challenges are facing the marketing in placing their brand. Moreover, a market analysis of the company is to be provided and the way they are managing the key trends in marketing management is to be evaluated.

Evaluating the key challenges faced by Warburton gluten-free bread for the management of the operation of their brand's marketing

The effective management of brand's marketing is important for any company as it is going to create value for them in the market assisting to attract new consumers in an easier way (Calder et al. 2016). Warburton, a British baking firm is presently seen to operate in the gluten-free market in the UK but are facing challenges which are hindering them to execute effective brand marketing in the industry. One of the key challenges being faced by Warburton is increased competition in the gluten-free bread industry which is creating problem for them in executing effective operation of their brand marketing. This is evident as apart from them who provide gluten-free bread varieties there are other baking firms who delivers gluten-free products like Genius, BFree Foods, Nairns Oatcakes and others (www.fdf.org.uk, 2017). As mentioned by Simonov et al. (2018), increased competition in the market results the firm experience issues with developing successful promotion of their brand. This is because continuous changes have to be made in the brand’s marketing strategies to stand out from the increasing competitors which are not always possible. A similar condition is being faced by Warburton, where they have to make continuous changes in their marketing strategies of the brand to be in the advantageous position in the industry which is not being always possible for them. This has result them to experience hindered sales and poor positioning of their brand in the market (bakeryinfo.co.uk, 2017).
The Warburton is also facing challenges in their brand's successful marketing operation due to unhealthy quotient in their gluten-free products. This is evident as it is found that in Warburton’s gluten-free sliced bread 7.7g of fat is present per 100g in comparison to 2.5g per 100g in their regular sliced bread (www.dailymail.co.uk, 2013). This has result them to experience a negative image in their market. This is because in the UK people have become more health conscious and they are avoiding increased amount of fat intake to avoid problems with their health (www.independent.co.uk, 2016). This has made Warburton experience negative word-of-mouth regarding their products resulting in unsuccessful marketing of their brand which is not up to the mark to their estimated success. In the UK, the government is becoming more concerned with the addition of complex rules and implementation of taxation regarding unhealthy products to ensure healthy food is being delivered to the public (www.telegraph.co.uk, 2015). This is creating challenges for Warburton to successfully execute their brand marketing as they are facing legal constraints and rules from the UK government due to their increased fat content in the gluten-free products.
The other challenge faced by Warburton in managing the marketing of their brand of gluten-free bread is that they are facing difficulty in trading conditions. This is evident as Warburton informed that they are facing issues with placing the products in the regular retail market chain as often their products are going unnoticed among the normal bread products (www.bakeryandsnacks.com, 2015). Thus, they are being unable to effectively reach their determined target consumer base leading to hindered brand marketing in the industry. Warburton is also facing challenges in identifying the best marketing channel for successfully managing their brand's marketing operation. As mentioned by Pauwels et al. (2016), identification of effective and best marketing channel is to be strategically made for successful brand marketing. This is because the channel helps to introduce the product or the brand to the target customers in order to attract them for making purchase and become loyal to the brand. Warburton’s
gluten-free bread though found to have effective exposure in the online marketing websites and social media as required but they lack store exposure in supermarkets due to which they are facing hindrance in successful and efficient management of their brand marketing (www.bakeryandsnacks.com, 2015). This has result them to achieve lower than expected exposure regarding the product in the market as they cannot offer satisfaction to the consumers who wish to shop physically.

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The journey of the consumers is no more framed in a linear way as they are seen to have developed control on their own to make purchase decisions which are not more solely influenced by the marketing abilities of the company. Therefore, brands are required to develop an effective vision to form a potential relationship with the consumers in order to successfully manage the brand’s marketing in attracting the target customers (Hudson et al. 2016). In case of Warburton, they are facing challenges in this respect as their competitors are acting at the same pace to develop vision for forming potential relationship with the target customers by stealing their strategies. This has led Warburton to experience effective challenges from the competitors which have created hindrance for them to effectively manage the brand’s marketing operating in a successful way regarding gluten-free products.

Warburton is one of the leading bakery firms in the UK who is seen to be operating in the gluten-free marketing of products. In order to analyse their current marketing activities and their success in fulfilling the objectives the marketing mix, PESTEL, SWOT and Porter’s five forces model is to be used.

Porter’s Five Forces

Competitive Rivalry: The gluten-free food industry is seemed to have intense competition because of the presence of large number of suppliers and brands which ensures that extensive rivalry is to be present (www.foodnavigator.com, 2017). This is because each of the competitors would try effectively to attract as many consumers towards them in any way to be in the leading position developing rivalry between firms. Thus, Warburton is going to face extensive competitive rivalry as wide number of competitors like Genius, BFree Foods, Nairns Oatcakes and others would be competing to show them low in order to gain greater customer base for their firm.

Suppliers Power: There are wide numbers of suppliers present in the baking industry but the number of suppliers who are involved in gluten-free products is considerably low (www.coeliac.org.uk, 2018). Therefore, the supplier power in the industry is high. However, Warburton effectively acts to retain their suppliers and offer them opportunities due to which they are not going to face hindrance with high barraging power of suppliers.

Buyer Power: The bargaining power of the buyer with respect to gluten-free bread is high as they have various options of brand to avail in this industry (metro.co.uk, 2017). Warburton develops the products according to the needs and demands of the consumers and thus they are going to face the low barraging power of the buyers for them. Threat of Substitution: The threat of substitution is high for Warburton in respect to the gluten-free bread manufacturing and sales as wide variety of substitute products are being used to develop better qualities of gluten-free products for the public. Threat of New Entry: The gluten-free bread industry is still evolving and Warburton has recently involved in the industry thought they have been in the baking industry for more than 100 years. Thus, threat of new entry is medium for them because though they already have an established brand position in the market but is still new to the gluten-free product making industry where their brand is still not established effectively. Therefore, there is an opportunity for new firms to enter the industry to become better than Warburton bread.

PESTEL Analysis

Global Railway versus Air

Analysis

The assistance from the government towards the companies in any industry helps the firms to develop more effectively in the market as their hindrance with financial and strategic planning are resolved with the contribution received from the government (Ali and Frick, 2016). In the case of Warburton, the assistance from the UK government is going to help the resolve financial issues, in turn, assisting them to more efficiently establish themselves in the market. The high economic performance in the gluten-free product industry of the UK is seen to assist Warburton to implement innovation in their products. This has also led them to accomplish their objective of better economic position in the industry which is because offering innovation is allowing them good returns and profit on their total investment. The celiac patients are required to have gluten-free diet for living in a healthy way (Lionetti et al. 2014). Thus, increasing celiac patients in the UK informs that Warburton has effective market for increasing the sales of their gluten-free products. Further, the availability of upgraded technology in baking within the UK is going to help Warburton develop improved quality of gluten-free bread for the consumers helping them to accomplish their objective of delivering quality products to consumers. Warburton is seen to develop their gluten-free bread products under the Regulation (RU) No 828/2014 according to which they maintain 20ppm or less gluten in their products. This is effective for them to accomplish the objective to minimising legal issues with their company while distributing gluten-free products.

Global Railway versus Air

Analysis

Warburton is one of the leading brands in the gluten-free product industry has the strength to use their image to attract potential customer base for their products. Moreover, the freshly baked products is also a strength for Warburton as the customers would have healthy bread which is going to offer them satisfaction, in turn, making them loyal towards the brand. However, the increased competition in the market acts as a weakness for Warburton as they would be continually facing rivalry and problems from the competitors due to which they cannot stabilise to use a single effective strategy to attain profit for their business. The lack of assurance of health quotient related to the gluten-free products of Warburton acts as a weakness for them as it is would lead customers to avoid the brand due to confusion regarding their health. However, they have the opportunity of community involvement which Warburton can use to educate the consumers about the healthy quotient related to their product so that the customers are assured that they are making a healthy purchase. In the gluten-free bread industry, it is found that consumers are trying to have more tasteful products with increased variety to chose the one they feel best (bakeryinfo.co.uk, 2018). Warburton has increased variety of gluten-free bread products and thus they have the opportunity to cater to the needs and demands of the customer, in turn, having the efficiency to create an increased consumer based by satisfying the consumers. Warburton faces the threat of increased fat content in their gluten-free products which is made to soften the bread which they require to reduce so that the products can be actually healthy in nature.

Marketing Mix

Product: The product is referred to the item which is used to create satisfaction of the consumers. The firm which ensures to create product which has demand in the market are the successful ones (Slater et al. 2014). In the UK, it is found that wide numbers of individuals wish to have gluten-free products. Since bread is one of the staple foods of the British the population is seen to have high demand for gluten-free bread. Warburton is seen to have understood the fact and has increased the manufacturing of gluten-free product related to various types of bread for the consumers in the UK market. This is evident as they offer gluten-free products like beetroot warps, high protein super seeds wraps, gluten-free crumpets, loaves and many others which has helped them accomplish the objective of effective product placement in the market.

Price: The consumers wish to have products which are cost-effective in nature as it offers them the opportunity to spend their finances strategically (Peschel et al. 2016). This is because high priced products mean to out weight the benefits which they receive after purchasing of the product. Warburton has been seen to consider the fact and has allocated price of their products which is within the reach of the middle and upper class consumers. However, their products are not low priced as normal bread and therefore cannot be easily purchased by the lower class for normal consumption as the price is high for them and this class of population is quite huge in number in the UK (www.mysupermarket.co.uk, 2018). Thus, the price of the gluten-free products poses constrain for Warburton to attract consumers from all class as few experience it to outweight the benefit they receive from buying normal bread.

Place: The place of distribution of the products is vital to make it easily accessible to target consumers (Plieninger et al. 2018). Warburton has understood it and is trying to include the gluten-free bread in the normal retail market areas and suburbs. However, they are not effectively successful as many retail stores do not keep their products and are mainly found in some supermarkets only in the city centre places situated in the UK and in ecommerce sites (Burden, 2015). Thus, the place constraints are negatively affecting the marketing opportunity of Warburton to reach wider consumers.

Promotion: The promotion is a significant part of marketing as it creates sales and brand recognition (Carter, 2017). Warburton is seen to include wide number of promotion channel such as YouTube, traditional media, social media and others to promote their products. This has created awareness regarding their presence in the market which increased their sales but has not reached the estimated number as assumed by them. Thus, they require more effective promotion and develop better content for their products to increase their brand recognition in turn to increase their sales.

Evaluating the way Warburton is embracing the key trends in the marketing management

The marketing management trends are always changing and the companies require adapting to the trends to remain in the business. In the UK, there is wide number of trends being faced recently in general within any industry and in the gluten-free product market which is to be effectively embraced by Warburton for their successful marketing management.

The key trend being faced by in the present marketing management is delivering a connected customer experience by the company to its consumers (Kasriel-Alexander, 2016). This is because the customers in the present market situation need the companies to show value towards them even after purchase. Warburton is seen to embrace the trend by delivering pre and post-purchase services to the consumers to remain connected. This is done to identify if the actual product meets the needs and demands of the consumers to satisfy them or require innovation and changes to suit their health to create satisfaction for them. As a form of post-sales services, Warburton informs about healthy recipes which can be made by the consumers with their gluten-free products in order to have improved health (Voorhees et al. 2017). As mentioned by Wu et al. (2015), there is an increased trend to look for customer satisfaction because the present gluten-free market for bread has increased potentially than before. Therefore, if Warburton does not effectively ensure customer satisfaction through connect services experiences they are going to fail in establishing their business. As argued by López and Sicilia (2014), consumers in the present market are more concerned with researching information regarding the product before their actual purchase. This is because they require ensuring that the products they are going to buy are worth purchase for their investment. Thus, Warburton in response to the trend has developed customer services which inform about any queries made by the consumers irrespective of whether they finally buy their brand or not (www.warburtonsglutenfree.com, 2018). This has helped Warburton to develop effective relationship with the consumers helping them to successfully embrace the trend of connected customer experiences which are critical for companies.

The other evolving trend in marketing management is automation and implementation of social media in various ways for improving the journey of purchase for the customers. As commented by (Scott, 2015), the increased use of social media has been seen in increased number among the current consumers. This is because the information present in the media allows them to have effective information to determine whether to purchase the product or not. Warburton is seen to have understood the fact and boosts their consumers to post their after-experiences regarding the use of their products in their official page present in social media sites. This is because the information acts as referral marketing for their gluten-free products which assist them to influence their target consumers to buy their products, in turn, increasing their sales proving effective marketing management. As mentioned by Lamberton and Stephen (2016), the online purchasing of products has gained importance and is one of the recent marketing trends. This is because online marketing allows automation of purchase of everyday products to be delivered at the consumer’s doorstep. Thus, Warburton is trying to increase their online availability of gluten-free products so that the automation of services can be established. For this purpose, they have taken assistance from supermarket giants like Morrisons, Sainsbury, Aldi and others so that with their help they can increase their online presence of gluten-free products to be delivered at the consumer’s doorstep (www.warburtonsglutenfree.com, 2018).

The recent trend faced in the marketing of products in the gluten-free industry is that the consumers mainly wish to have tasty food products with wide varieties so that they can select according to their choice (www.foodnavigator.com, 2017). This is because individuals avoid compromising on the taste of the foods. Warburton has developed wide varieties of gluten-free baking products including wraps, bread, crumptons and others of different flavours, shape and sizes so that the consumers have wide varieties to products from where they can choose according to their choice (bakeryinfo.co.uk, 2018). Moreover, another recent trend related to marketing management is content marketing where the company apart from directly selling the product develops content which stimulates interest among the consumers to buy the product (Jefferson and Tanton, 2015). Warburton has also focused on this aspect regarding which they have developed attractive content which informs why gluten-free products are healthy for coeliac patients and what advantages they are going to experience by having them (www.warburtonsglutenfree.com, 2018). This has resulted people to get attracted towards availing their products without being directly approaching the people to avail their brand.

The recent trend in the marketing is that leading companies are using predictive technology to develop effective information for ensuring better performance of their brand in their future. For this purpose, the companies are using personalised emails, mobile push notifications, webinars, mobile messaging and others (Strauss and Frost, 2016). Warburton being in the leading position in the market is also using the predictive technologies for identifying extent of their success in the market in respect to gluten-free products. This is because they wish to have data regarding what are the changing needs of the consumers regarding gluten-free baking products which they require to make through innovation in their products to stand out in the market from their competitors.

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Conclusion

The above discussion informs that Warburton gluten-free bread is experiencing high competition increased fat content in their gluten-free baking products than normal ones, difficulty in trading of products and others as the key challenges for management of their brand’s marketing operations. The market analysis informs that the company is going to experience increased competitive rivalry and medium threat of new entrants in the industry. Further, the external marketing environment is seen to be highly favourable for Warburton as there is high demand in the market regarding their gluten-free products, as well as they, have assistance from the UK government for effectively executing their business. The recent trends in making management identified are increased consumer connection, increased use of social media, automation of services, content marketing and others which are effectively embraced by Warburton through their strategic decision making.

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