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Introduction to Uniqlo

Uniqlo as the name suggests is one of the well-known retailing, manufacturing and designer clothing brand operating in Japan. The company is a subsidiary of a company named Fast Retailing Co. Ltd. since 2005. The company operates in other countries as well such as Australia, Bangladesh, China, Germany, United Kingdom, United States and others. The company has 500 stores in Japan itself and has earned a lot of profit since then. The company has been best in manufacturing cloths with best possible time and dedication (Fastretailing, 2017). However, the company also has various opportunity in the world market by further product development and expansion. Due to the decreasing sale of the company it might face huge threat from its competitors like H&M and Zara. For a detail analysis of company’s threat and weakness refer to appendix one.

Macro environmental factors determine the factors prevailing in the country that might affect the production, operation and sale of products manufactured by Uniqlo (Zalengera, et al., 2014).

Economic: the economic factors determine the income, GDP and purchasing power of the customers in the economy. Accordingly, the company will set its price for the products so that it can attract maximum market share.

Technological: Technological growth and initiative taken by the country in research and development will help the company in using the type of technique in their manufacturing and operation department.

Social and Cutlture: Social and cultural aspect of the country is essential for them to decide the acceptance of the type of designer clothes they manufacture. If the society of the country is modern and advanced then it will be easy of the brand to sell designer clothes in that region.

Environmental: the company also needs to focus on the environmental needs of the country. Country having strict environmental rules will require any company to operate sustainably.

The marketing goal of Uniqlo is to penetrate in the market sustainably through online sources. The company plans to introduce a new sustainable fashion clothing collection for its customer by the end of this year.

Targeting the market is an essential task of the company in order to make its marketing goal a successful one. Targeting the market can be based on various grounds such as demographic, sex, income group and others. The company has already presented itself in the market as a premium brand. This has been done by the brand for customers that buy pays high price for the product in order to maintain their status in the market. However, the company can try for a new target customer segment and strategy for their sustainable designer product such as the middle-income group and a wider range of market. This will help the company to hold both types of products such as premium class as well as normal class. However, age wise the company will target the young youths as they are the maximum buyers of fashionable and designer clothes and are fond of having huge collection of it (Wirtz& Lovelock, 2017). Moreover, the company can use this strategy to expand in any country it wants as almost all the country in the world is facing some problem or the other in their environment (Liedtke et al., 2015). Carrying out a sustainable operation in the manufacturing sector will help give a company a sense of environmental benefit.

Macro Environmental Factors Affecting Uniqlo

Segmentation Basic

Market Segment

Geographic

Australia, Bangladesh, China, Germany, United Kingdom, United States

Age

Above 12 years and below 30 years of age

Gender

Male, Female

Income

$19,000- $50,000

Lifestyle

Stylish, bold, western

Table 1: Positioning and targeting

Source: Author’s creation

Value proposition defines the value the company is giving to the market and its customer by the innovative idea it is bringing in its organization. It is the promise the company make to the customer segment it is planning to offer its product (Osterwalder et al., 2014). Uniqlo is offering a highly value proposition to its customer as well as to the environment in which it will expand its plan by introducing new sustainable fashionable clothing in the market. The clothes will be manufactured by environmental friendly technology and using environmental friendly raw materials. This will keep a check on the growing need of globalization in the economy. This is the message the company is planning to put forward so that every customer can contribute some part in the environmental need by buying the clothes (Ceschin, 2013). The company aims to earn ¥ 5 trillion by 2020 and his strategy will help the company to earn high revenue. Moreover, the strategy will attract a lot of customers and help the company to expand its market share compared t future. Further, an increase in market share will help the brand to fight tough competition coming from other top clothing brands such as Zara and H&M.

Non-comparative

Sustainable fashionable clothing is the best and unique western clothing for young customers because they are the maximum purchaser of western and fashionable clothing.

Comparative

Sustainable western clothing is a better western and unique product offering than the western clothing offered by Zara for the young target customers because they love unique designs which is different from others.

Table 2: Comparative value proportion

Source: Author’s creation

The marketing tactics that the company can use for its new product development are broadly classified into product. Price, place and promotion. It is the called the marketing mix tool that every company use in order to analyse its success path and the cost it will incur to be successful in this path.

The product that the company will offer in its new marketing goal will be newly designed sustainable clothing to young youth customers. The products will be all types of western clothing suiting the need of customers from various countries. The company for further usage will also recycle the products once it has been worn and given back to them by the customers. The products will be made by using environmental friendly raw materials such as cotton, jute mixed, organic cotton, soy, bamboo and others (Khan, 2014). Thus, sustainable methods of manufacturing are the best way a company can grow. It is a unique idea that a company can use for further expansion as it has already achieved a lot from its existing market and strategies.

Uniqlo's Marketing Goals and Target Market

The company will charge medium pricing for the clothes it is manufacturing so that maximum number of customers buys their products and benefit the environment at large. The company already has customers that are ready to pay high prices due to its brand name. However, it wants to target mass market and thus will charge comparatively lower price. Moreover, it will also offer several discounts, offers to the customers initially after the introduction of the clothes so that it can attract large number of customers, and increase the brand value. Prices will be kept at minimum to make it affordable to the young college-going children that are not earning something and can buy their clothes. Moreover, the company can use direct selling without using any middlemen for distribution. This will help the company to charge lower price due to lower cost. However, while setting the price it should also analyse the trends of the market and its competitors to get the best out of it.

Place is the distribution channels the company choose to bring their product in the market and offer it to the customers. Uniqlo already owns as a subsidiary company in the name of Fast Retailing Co. Ltd. The company also has its own online website to sell its product. However, it can try other channels of distributing its new product in the market such as offering franchisee or launching its own stores. This will give the company the chance to interact directly with the customers. The online portal is another important place through which it can distribute its products, as it is the commonly used channel by the customers after the invention of internet. It should make its online website strong and user friendly for its customers.

Promotion is yet aspect of the company to present its products in front of the customers and in the market. Carrying out a sustainable operation in the manufacturing sector will help give a company a sense of environmental benefit. The promotional method that will be most effective for the company is the social media as it is one of the less expensive and easy channel to carry out promotion activity. Moreover, the young customers that the company is targeting will be mostly available in these social media sites only. Thus, social media will be most effective and can help generate them maximum sale (Tuten, & Solomon, 2014).The company has decided to invest $50,000 in the promotional activity to help the product capture market effectively.

Promotional Activity

Cost

Instagram Advertisement

$10,000

Facebook Advertisement

$10,000

Google Advertisement

$20,000

Twitter Advertisement

$10,000

Total Cost

$50,000

The above table shows the division of cost the company will invest while promoting its product in the social media. The various social media tool that it will use are Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. It will also invest some amount in Google advertisement as it is the most commonly used search engine in the world. Thus, the company will use some integrated marketing communication tools to interact with the customers and increase its product value. The integrated communication tools used by Uniqlo are online marketing and Google advertisement channels. This will help them capture wider audience for their product.

References

Bailay, R. (2017). Big malls roll out the red carpet for Uniqlo. The Economic Times. Retrieved 14 October 2017, from https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/industry/cons-products/fashion-/-cosmetics-/-jewellery/big-malls-roll-out-the-red-carpet-for-uniqlo/articleshow/60739625.cms

Bull, J. W., Jobstvogt, N., Böhnke-Henrichs, A., Mascarenhas, A., Sitas, N., Baulcomb, C., ... & Carter-Silk, E. (2016). Strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats: A SWOT analysis of the ecosystem services framework. Ecosystem services, 17, 99-111.

Ceschin, F. (2013). Critical factors for implementing and diffusing sustainable product-Service systems: insights from innovation studies and companies' experiences. Journal of Cleaner Production, 45, 74-88.

Fastretailing.com. (2017).  Annual Reports | FAST RETAILING CO., LTD.  Retrieved 14 October 2017, from https://www.fastretailing.com/eng/ir/library/annual.html

Khan, M. T. (2014). The concept of'marketing mix'and its elements (a conceptual review paper). International journal of information, business and management, 6(2), 95.

Liedtke, C., Baedeker, C., Hasselkuß, M., Rohn, H., & Grinewitschus, V. (2015). User-integrated innovation in Sustainable LivingLabs: an experimental infrastructure for researching and developing sustainable product service systems. Journal of Cleaner Production, 97, 106-116.

Osterwalder, A., Pigneur, Y., Bernarda, G., & Smith, A. (2014). Value proposition design: How to create products and services customers want. John Wiley & Sons.

Tuten, T. L., & Solomon, M. R. (2014). Social media marketing. Sage.

Wirtz, J., & Lovelock, C. (2017). Positioning Services in Competitive Markets. World Scientific.

Zalengera, C., Blanchard, R. E., Eames, P. C., Juma, A. M., Chitawo, M. L., & Gondwe, K. T. (2014). Overview of the Malawi energy situation and A PESTLE analysis for sustainable development of renewable energy. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 38, 335-347.

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[Accessed 23 February 2024].

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