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Marketing Background of Ecostore

Describe about the Marketing Analysis of Ecostore for Quality vs Quantity.

Mr. Malcolm Rand along with his three other friends identified a land (approx. 150 acre) in North land of New Zealand to build an Eco-village in 1984 and started living there with their families, from 1985. In the beginning they don’t have any house but they camped in tents and caravans for making their dream real. Eventually they built six houses there, that cluster together to form a living community. The idea behind the project, to build an eco-village, was Permaculture i.e. looking after the land and the neighbours / a self-sustaining agricultural system. In their regular practice they stopped using pesticides, fungicides and artificial fertilisers which may cause problem in future.  After living there for some time, Mr. Rand mindfully watched that the water coming out of the houses due to cleaning of home, household things, human body by using laundry detergents, utensil wash detergents, shampoos, conditioners, soaps, moisturisers etc, end up in waterways and polluting the natural water of the land. These detergents, soaps etc are made up of harsh and harmful chemicals which also cause harm to human body (Ecostore, 2016).

Then Mr. Rand with the help of some intelligent and curious people tried to find out an alternate solution to this and shortly they came out with some eco-friendly solution. In 1993 the family of Malcolm Rands with his wife Melanie had made launching of a small business through mail order to supply green products everyday household products. Thus the journey of “Ecostore” stared.

With the time and as per market demand they made expansion of over 100 products with the aid of enormous formulation and makeover of design. In order to sustain in the market Ecostore repositioning it is proposition, focusing it is key uniqueness – Health (Williams, 2016).

Ecostore develop healthier products, with nontoxic or unnecessary chemicals, for their customers. They also need to make a commitment that their products are at par with the main stream brands. Their experts developed the products related to laundry requirements driven by the philosophy, “Health First”, which is continuing till date. In case the doubt arises regarding the safety of any products related to the health of people or environment, the option of safer alternative is to be found out.    Focus of Ecostore on health created a loyal customer base for them. They develop their products under the able guidance and direction of Sir Ray Avery – a lead formulator and chemist. Their customer number grows day by day. For the ease of operation and to give them better service to their customer Ecostore have opened their retail store in Auckland. Ecostore have the expansion of product with the range of household cleaner, varieties of body care and that of baby care. In 2002, the company did the launching of their products into New Zealand supermarket which was followed subsequently by Australia in 2004 and USA in 2009 (Soo, 2011).

Strategies used by Ecostore

In order to remain in the business for long time the company have to retain their valued customers and develop new customers, which may be termed as sustainable marketing. Sustainable marketing in general, is involved by building and maintaining sustainable relationship with the target audience keeping an eye on the issues of social and the natural environment. Sustainable marketing is sharing the orientation of relationship of marketing in long term by not entertaining conventional transaction focus of short term. The process of integrating the social and environmental criteria into the area of conventional marketing things and processes is a part of transaction of sustainability marketing.

Main products, services, suppliers and customers of the company

Starting from 1993 till today Ecostore have developed and marketed more than 100 products. The main category of these products are Laundry wash, Dish wash, hand and Body Wash, Skin Care, Baby care Ultra Sensitive Products.

All these products are made out of ingredients from earthly materials like plant and mineral which are with the source of natural and renewable sources and are bio degradable and have with the rating of lowest hazard considering the factor of safety related to human health and environment. To resolve any doubt rose in the product, related to the safety of human health or environment, a suitable safer alternate is used (Leung, 2014).

We see that the products of Ecostore are made out of mainly natural resources keeping the safety of human health or environment in view. They stand guaranty for their product.  Their customers are mainly health and environment conscious people and are spread across several countries may select their desired products and use them safely and be satisfied (Superioressaypapers, 2016). 

So long we have seen about the quality of the products made by Ecostore. Now it is the time to look at the price of these products and where they stand in comparison with their competitors. We have taken the price of the Laundry Powder and compared this with the competitors of Ecostore in the following table –

Company category

Brand Name

Price per Kg. (AUD)

Eco-Friendly Competitors

Earth Choice

6.65

Bosisto’s

8.00

Earthwise

8.00

Planet Ark

8.35

Eco Store

8.35

Mainstream Competitors

Omo

6.00

Fab

4.49

Cold Power

5.00

Radiant

4.66

Surf

4.49

Homebrand

2.44

Select

3.99

The above data show, that Quality wise and Brand wise Ecostore is superior but Price wise it is not a very comfortable position.

We also go through a weekly sale statistics of 2014 of the same product, which is as follows –

 Brand

Price per Kg. (AUD)

Sold Qty. (a week)

Omo

6.00

5

Earth Choice

6.65

2

Eco Store

8.35

4

Fab

4.49

5

Cold Power

5.00

0

The second table shows that though the price of Ecostore is high, their sale is more in the Eco-Friendly category. The customer of this category is Healthy and Environment conscious people. So if Ecostore can reduce their price without compromising quality then their sale is definitely going to increase (Risiinfo, 2014). 

Pricing of Ecostore

A successful product or service is that product for which the benefit is transparently communicated to its targeted market. Promotional steps related to marketing of a company’s promotional marketing mix which may be consisting of many things. Some of them are as follows –

Advertising – Communication through mass media against some monitory consideration.

Public relationship – This is an instrument to develop a positive relationship among the organisation along with media and people of the community. A standard public relationship is involved to create publicity in favour through the media as well as by reducing negative situations.

Sales promotion – This is a very traditional promotional tool which is designed for creation of short term increase in sale by different offers like discount coupons, discount codes as well as Flash Sales.

Personal Selling – This is an interaction on sales between the sales personnel of a firm and a consumer – with one to one basis.

Internet Marketing – Online placement of advertisements on internet web pages by programmes like Google's Ad Words.

Direct mail – This process is including sending advertisement mails to the specific target audience. Firms often purchase lists of database containing information like names, postal addresses, e-mails etc for this purpose. This may be of highly effective while the direct mail recipients are part of the target market selected by the firm.

Social Media – Use of social media by the firms with conveying messages on social media like Facebook, Twitter etc. to keep the interest of the customers regarding the firm. Even they usually run promotions, flash sales and discounts to entertain their clients in social media.

Sponsorship – An organisation or event is being remunerated to use the branding and logo of the firm. Sponsorship is mainly attached with sporting events; where the costumes of players and decoration of stadiums are covered with the branding of the firm along with the name of the tournament may be done with the firm. Effective sponsorship needs a huge audience, it is also seen that some smaller firms show interest in sponsoring smaller events in several local areas like school fairs, blood donation camps, local festivals etc (Chapman-Smith, 2013).

Message strategy – Firms should carefully consider of conveying the message that they want to communicate to their target audience in regard to their promotional strategy. Specific message will be conveyed along with the resultant impact on the reputation of the firm. 

Promotion of Ecostore

Media Strategy - The promotional mix message ought to be communicated to the target audience through Newspaper, Radio Broadcasting, TV programmes etc.

Company like Ecostore should try to convince more and more people about the benefit of using their products through Internet (Pureadvantage, 2012).

By the journey of more than two decades Ecostore already have a strong distribution system for their products. In spite of that they may also have faced some problem in distribution in some cases. The numbers of customers are also increasing day by day in different parts of the globe. So considering all these things Ecostore must open new distribution points wherever necessary and keep adequate stock to their existing distribution points. Now a day the concept of E-Commerce companies are growing like anything. So Ecostore may also tie up with those companies for reaching more and more people (Ecostore, 2010).   

The Marketing Mix represents the border between a company and its customers. The relevant concept of green marketing mix is consisting of four (4) “P’s” - Product, Price, Place and Promotion which sponsors the concept of McCarthy (in 1960) which covered the imagination of collective marketing and had tolerated for the last 50 years, irrespective of so many changes to the Global business along with the area of marketing.

Product - A producer with the offering of ecological products which should not disturb the environment instead should be proactive to ensure protection of environment with the effort to liquidate the pre-existing environmental damages.

Price – The price tag of such finished goods might be with a higher range than conventional products of same type. But the target audience (health and environment conscious people) is ready to pay some extra for those green products.

Place – Logistic management of distribution is of vital importance; with the specific focal point is to be given on packaging of ecological compliance, so that the product inside should remain fresh. It is easier to market local and seasonal products like vegetables from regional farm houses which are flexible in nature with easy availability rather than any imported products.

Promotion - A communication so far the market is concerned, is to be made with a patient and perseverant approach related to aspects of environment, e.g. the company with the TQM objective had possessed a CP certificate or ISO 14000 certificate, which can be instrumental for pollicisation of improved firm’s reputation and goodwill. Secondly the money spends by the company on entail protection to be informed to their customers as well as to the society through media advertisement. Thirdly, sponsoring / protecting the natural environment up to the fullest extent a company can, is also treated as equally important. Last but the least, products with ecological features, which they produce, need sales promotions of special category (Padmaja, 2010).

Distribution of Ecostore

So long we have discussed about the products, quality of the products, customers of the company, pricing of the products, the distribution system, marketing strategy, marketing mix etc. In every step there are scopes of development.

The company should try to reduce or stop the use of chemicals wherever they are using till date and move towards more superior quality.

The price of the products of Ecostore is in higher side compared to their Eco-Friendly Competitors what we have seen in the pricing part. So they should endeavour to reduce the same or add more value to their product without incurring any additional cost. So that their customer should be delighted to use Ecostore products and realise the effectiveness of the money spend by them.

Their distribution channel / system should be so good that a remote customer can get his / her desired product in a reasonable time. Time to time Ecostore should review their area wise customer concentration and change/ make their distribution channel accordingly (Ahamed, 2013).

Customer is the key person of any business, so the marketing people of Ecostore should be always in regular touch with their customers. They should take feedback from them about the product, the scope of further improvement they need in future, their need about the new product etc and feed those data to the company for continual development and growth.

Conclusion

Day by day people are realising the necessary of preservation of environment in order to maintain the ecosystem. Every country of the world is now agreeing to reduce the carbon emission rate in order to minimise the global warming.  The packaging practice of Kiwi manufacturing company, Ecostore, had been changed from their earlier plastic packaging for its entire products for the purpose to mitigate pollution with taking the stand against global warming. The plastic bottle which they ware used was made from Oil-based products by they have replaced by bottles made from sugarcane.  

Now the people are also becoming conscious about their health and changing their life style. They have now started using Eco-friendly products in place of harsh chemicals based products. Some developed countries are banning the use of some harmful chemicals. Under this situation there is ample scope of eco-friendly products.

More the people will use these types of Eco-Friendly products more we will enjoy living in a green and clean earth.

References:

Ahamed, S., 2013. Quality vs quantity: Ecostore and MediaWorks Interactive's online experiment. [Online] Available at: https://stoppress.co.nz/didge/quality-vs-quantity-ecostore-and-mediaworks-interactive-reveal-results-online-experiment [Accessed 29 September 2016].

Chapman-Smith, B., 2013. Ecostore head green, keen and seeing red. [Online] Available at: https://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11117089 [Accessed 29 September 2016].

Ecostore, 2010. ecostore hits the big time in the Big Apple. [Online] Available at: https://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/BU1003/S00320.htm [Accessed 29 September 2016].

Ecostore, 2016. Ecostore. [Online] Available at: https://www.ecostore.com./pages/our-guarantee [Accessed 29 September 2016].

Leung, C., 2014. Research for Eco-Store. [Online] Available at: https://prezi.com/j-ln4ps1nf9w/research-for-eco-store/ [Accessed 29 September 2016].

Padmaja, R., 2010. Marketing Mix. [Online] Available at: https://www.slideshare.net/jitu9030394490/a-study-on-marketing-mix-competitive-analysis-of-pure-it-hul [Accessed 29 September 2016].

Pureadvantage, 2012. ecostore. [Online] Available at: https://pureadvantage.org/news/2012/03/26/ecostore/ [Accessed 29 September 2016].

Risiinfo, 2014. New Zealand’s ecostore moves to sugarcane-based packaging from oil-based plastics. [Online] Available at: https://technology.risiinfo.com/packaging-technology/asia-pacific/new-zealand-s-Ecostore-moves-sugarcane-based-packaging-oil-based-plastics [Accessed 29 September 2016].

Soo, S., 2011. "In Ecostore We Trust": Uncovering the Symbolic Meanings Of Sustainable Products & Their Use in Building Consumers’ Selfâ€ÂImage. [Online] Available at: https://aut.researchgateway.ac.nz/bitstream/handle/10292/1176/SooS.pdf?sequence=4 [Accessed 29 September 2016].

Superioressaypapers, 2016. Conduct a marketing analysis of Ecostore. [Online] Available at: https://superioressaypapers.com/conduct-a-marketing-analysis-of-ecostore/ [Accessed 29 September 2016].

Williams, A., 2016. How ecostore disrupts the traditional brand model. [Online] Available at: https://www.cmo.com.au/article/602224/how-ecostore-disrupts-traditional-brand-model/ [Accessed 29 September 2016].

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