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This report requires students to demonstrate an understanding of relevant concepts, theories, tools, and models discussed in this unit.
Please cite and reference relevant data and information, where applicable. The examiners expect authentic citations/references for GDP data, per capita income, sales data, demographic data, market share and growth related data and the like.
For data related to media and budget allocation, BCG matrix, industry - competitors' sales/market share, product life cycle (PLC), market share and growth data, and the like can be hypothetically developed (if you do not find those). In these cases, simply write “source: assumed and prepared for this assignment task onlyâ€Â. Please remember that the data/info that is readily available on the Web or in other published resources cannot be 'assumed' for the purpose of this assessment task. 

Market summary and analysis of demand

Education industry in Australia mainly comprises of primary schools, high schools and tertiary education including vocational education, universities and TAFE colleges. There are major 43 universities in Australia that includes 40 public universities, one private university and two international universities. Australian National University (ANU) was founded in 1946 by the Parliament of Australia. The university is located in Canberra with its main campus in Acton ("ANU", 2017). The university is a national research university that has 10,052 undergraduate students and 10,840 post graduate students enrolled along with 3,753 employed staff. As per the rankings provided by QS World University, ANU has been ranked 22nd on a global basis while it ranks first in Australia. ANU is governed by a council comprising of fifteen members including a Chancellor and Vice- Chancellor. The university was reorganized in 2006 that led to the creation of seven colleges that lead teaching as well as research. This report provides a detailed description of the marketing strategy of Australian National University for 2018. The strategy involves in- depth analysis of the demand, market analysis, positioning of the brand, SWOT analysis, PESTLE analysis and brand promotion.

Market summary and analysis of demand:

Canberra is the capital city of Australia with a population of approximately 381,488. It is the eighth largest city of Australia. The median yearly household income of the residents in Canberra is approximately $78,024. The population of Canberra is projected to increase by 50,350 persons by the end of 2019 that shall make the population approximately 390,100 persons. The rise in the population is projected due to the development of Gungahlin and Molonglo.

North Canberra is projected to be the districts with youngest population due to the presence of several tertiary education institutes. Acton is expected to have the youngest population by 2019 with median age of less than 25 years. Figure 2 shows the number of students studying in Australian universities in Canberra. The demand for subjects like mathematics, engineering and economics has witnessed a drastic downfall. However, the students (both local and international) are preferring management and other commercial courses. Therefore, the major focus for the university must be management and related courses along with popularizing the less applied courses.

Canberra / ACT Universities

 

Local

 

Int

 

Total

 

Int%

 

The Australian National University

15,368

5,566

20,934

26.6%

University of Canberra

12,523

3,811

16,334

23.3%

Non-University Higher Education Institutions

112

112

0%

TOTAL

28,003

9,377

37,380

25.1%

ANU has been ranked number 3 as per US news 2017 rankings of top universities in Australia. Analyzing the above information, it can be stated that Canberra has a good market growth in terms of education industry. The growth of population along with majority of the population comprising of young generation shall compliment the growth of educational institutions set up in the region of Canberra especially Acton.  

Market segmentation and analysis of target market

Market segmentation and analysis of target market:

Market segmentation refers to the process of dividing the market and segregating the similar or homogeneous market into segments that have common demands and requirements. Market segmentation is mainly affected by factors such as measure of effective size, accessibility with the help of promotional activities, proper identification of the segments and the policies and resources (Müller, & Hamm, 2014). The major four types of market segmentation are psychographic, geographic, behavioural and demographic (Cross, Belich & Rudelius, 2015). The university may follow either target marketing or mass marketing. However, mass marketing shall result in the ignorance of the student differences. Therefore, use of target marketing shall be more appropriate as it would identify the potential student differences. There are two kinds of target marketing namely concentrated marketing and differentiated marketing. The university’s concentrated marketing shall focus on a particular market segment of consumer while the differentiated marketing shall focus on more than one market segments. In this case, the University shall use differentiated marketing as the university has to focus on multiple segments. The university will target maximum target segments in order to popularize the less applied courses.

However, it has been observed that target marketing is much more expensive than the undifferentiated marketing as target marketing caters to customized needs. Based upon the segments in the differentiated market, the costs shall vary. Target marketing shall enable the university to ensure the marketing success as it would satisfy the requirements of the students. The tremendous increase in the competition among the universities shall result in the incompetency of the mass marketing strategy if the other competitors use target marketing. The market segmentation shall be done on the basis of demography as the average age of students in tertiary universities is 23 to 32 years. However, the average age of students in Acton is less than 25 years. Moreover, the number of foreign students in ANU is relatively high that make them potential target segment.

The popularity of the university as depicted by demographic segment is dependent upon the target segment’s geographical location. However, the demography of ANU shall differ from the other as it is internationally recognized university. The process of psychographic segmentation is used here to study the attitudes, lifestyles, personality traits and expectations of the students. The psychographic segmentation helps in reducing the market into a niche market for proper identification of major areas of focus. The focus target market can be further segregated into economy, quality and value buyer. A value buyer has expectations that the quality of services is equivalent to the price paid. A quality buyer is ready to pay higher price for attaining better quality of services. However, an economic buyer wants to maintain a balance between both by expecting borderline quality of services at moderate prices.

PESTLE Analysis

PESTLE analysis refers to the tool that is used for monitoring and analyzing the macro environmental factors that shall affect the University. The environmental factors that will affect the university are as follows:

  • Political
  • Economical
  • Social
  • Technological
  • Legal
  • Environmental

The major external factors that might affect ANU are changes in the policies of the government and tax policies. Other important factors include ban of travel between Australia and other countries to which the potential students of ANU belong and the influences of the non- profit organizations. The changes in the policies of the government might have adverse impact on the university as it might reduce the allocation of resources due to the reduced public funding (Ho, 2014). Increase in the rate of tax might also reduce the university’s funds. The travel ban implemented by Donald Trump might also reduce the number of international students. However, favourable changes in the government policies and the tax rates might help in increasing the overall efficiency of the university.

 The changes in the legislation, tax policies, energy cost, availability of funding and the economic climate might affect the economic environment of the university. Economic recession might have adverse impact on the development plans of ANU however, there is scope for investment at present. Increase in the tax rate might increase the amount of investment in the various development plans. Changes in the legislation shall increase the overall costs due to increase in the expenditure on management of the environment. The funds shall decrease with an increase in the energy costs. However, help from the government in terms of availability of funds shall encourage the students to pursue their desired courses.

The university might be affected by the pressure of the society and the cultural trends as the students are highly influenced by peer groups. It has often been observed that the pressure exerted by the peer groups decide the subject choice of the students. Although, the students have their own specific aims and goals but their decisions are also highly influenced by their surrounding environment. Therefore, consideration of the social environment while deciding the marketing strategy shall help the university in influencing more students and attracting them.

Technological advancements play an important role in attracting the students but also simultaneously increase the expenditure of the university (Shabanova et al., 2015). The use of latest technologies can prove to be a unique selling proposition for the university as it would improve the quality of services. ANU is also known for its research work and the funds available for the development of the technology is relatively high.

Legal factors have both internal and external impacts on an organization. Certain laws affect the business environment as well as the organizations maintain certain policies for effective functioning of the organization. ANU abides by the laws of the country. A council comprising of fifteen members including a Chancellor and Vice- Chancellor governs it.  

The environment of an organization is determined by its surroundings. The university strives to improve the environmental sustainable development performance by promoting and protecting the biodiversity. The university controls emissions to air as well as controls other hazardous materials. The university promotes waste management as well as water management

Analysis of the competitors is an essential step before formulating a marketing plan. ANU aims at achieving excellence and being internationally recognized through research, learning and scholarships, initially focussing on communities in Acton. With the help of innovations and technological advancements, the university wants to attain accomplishments for its students (Hollensen, 2015). The top universities and the major competitors of ANU are University of Melbourne, University of Sydney, University of New South Wales, University of Queensland, Monash University, University of Western Australia, University of Adelaide, University of Technology (Sydney) and the University of Wollongong.

Australian National University is among the top ten universities of Australia with its major competitor being University of Melbourne. The University of Melbourne is ahead of ANU in the top university rankings. The aim of ANU is to become the top university by overtaking its rival, The University of Melbourne.

SWOT analysis is a tool that is used to determine the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of the micro environment of the organizations (Grant, 2016). The SWOT analysis of the university is as follows:

Strength

· Positive reputation of the university in the market

· Positive feedback of the past and present students

· Technological advancement

· Highly praised research work of the university

· High quality and supportive faculty members

· Proactive support of the students

· Special grooming programs for the students for their successful careers

· Large infrastructure and green campus

· Environmental friendly campus with excellent services

Weakness

· ANU has been restructured in 2006 therefore, the multi-structured campus does not possess any unique qualities

· The university has more international students than local students

· The university is not much popular in other parts of Australia

· Low admission rates when compared to the infrastructure and available resources

OPPORTUNITY

· ANU has opportunities to form partnerships for the fulfilment of goals

· Presence of untapped overseas market provides great scope for growth

· Number of international students is more than the number of local students that also provides great scope for growth

· Opportunities in terms of societal trends

· Opportunity in terms of technological advancements

· Opportunity in terms of efficient connectivity among the colleges within the university

THREAT

· The university faces threats from the rivals who are ranked above the university, especially the University of Melbourne

· Threat from the travel ban imposed by Donald Trump might adversely affect the foreign exchange students and the students with dual citizenship

Value and brand positioning:

The university will rebrand its identity by positioning itself as an extraordinary university with excellence in academics and easy international reach. The major emphasis shall be its growing economy and distinctive geographical location. The university shall aim at helping the students to explore global opportunities (Waltinger et al., 2013). The major unique selling proposition of the university shall be its acceptance that the patterns of education have drastically changed and so the university is required to change its education patterns. The values of the university shall help in the positioning of the university. These values include excellence and quality, collegiality, integrity, ethics and accountability, relevance and responsibility and academic freedom (Maarit Jalkala & Keränen, 2014).

The marketing objective of ANU is to become the top ranked academic and research university with global reach. The university shall strive to inculcate an energetic culture that shall ensure its success. The university shall offer unique learning experiences to its students and help to the students to explore global opportunities. The university shall further expand its bounds internationally.

The marketing mix strategy comprises of 4 P’s namely product, price, place and promotion.

  • Product: The marketing mix in service industry involves product that is intangible in nature. The universities do not sell any physical products instead they sell services. Therefore, the products in service sector are perishable, heterogenous and the ownership cannot be transferred to the consumers. Thus, the service products are to be designed carefully. The university shall have to focus on improving the quality of its services in order to sustain in the market.
  • Price: Price refers to the revenue generated from the sale of products and services. In case of service industry, determining prices is more difficult than product industry. The factors that determine prices in the service industry are the labor, material, overhead costs and profit margin. ANU must offer its courses at prices that give tough competition to its rivals. The major factor that shall determine the prices are the salaries of the professors who shall impart qualitative services and shall possess abundant knowledge.
  • Place: In case of service industry, place refers to the area in which the services shall be located. The best location for ANU is Acton as majority of the population at Acton is below the age of 25 years who could be the potential students for the university.
  • Promotion: There have been drastic changes in the world of marketing and therefore, the university will be using different methods of promoting their messages (Baker, 2014). Both the methods of online and offline marketing shall be used. Social media shall be used for the promotion of the university as the students nowadays are more accustomed with sharing and communicating through various online social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. The university will be using these social media networking sites in order to attract the students. The social networking sites shall be used to promote the involvement of the university in the research papers and the several facilities offered by the university. The website of the university will be updated and the ranking in Google search engine shall be kept high. This shall be done so that the university details pop up as soon as a student searches for career options using Google. Advertising through print media is losing its effectiveness but it is still effective way of attracting the target customers. The parents of the students and the teachers still influence the decision-making of the students to a large extent. Banners, flyers, posters and journals and shall be distributed to attract the attention of the target segment. Career-counselling programs shall be initiated in order to provide proper guidance to them and persuade them.

The basic promotional strategy of the university shall focus on three essential factors that shall include what is to be communicated, how it shall be communicated and to whom it shall be communicated. The focus shall be made on four key factors namely immersion, knowledge, selection and certification (Madsen & Walker, 2015). Major focus shall be to maintain the quality of students and faculties by keeping them up to the mark. This shall strengthen the brand and reputation of the university. The courses offered by the university and their uniqueness shall be made clear to the potential students. The various certification courses shall include essential training and development along with problem solving sessions that will provide an added advantage to the students. The environment of ANU will be as such that the students and the faculties will feel proud to be associated with the university. The target segment for the university shall be the youngsters who are between the age of 19 to 30 years. Apart from the students being the main audience, the target segment shall also include media, parents, teachers and examination developers.

There have been drastic changes in the world of marketing and therefore, the university will be using different methods of promoting their messages. Both the methods of online and offline marketing shall be used. Social media shall be used for the promotion of the university as the students nowadays are more accustomed with sharing and communicating through various online social networking sites. The university will be using these social media networking sites in order to attract the students. The social networking sites shall be used to promote the involvement of the university in the research papers and the several facilities offered by the university. The website of the university will be updated and the ranking in Google search engine shall be kept high. This shall be done so that the university details pop up as soon as a student searches for career options using Google. Advertising through print media is losing its effectiveness but it is still effective way of attracting the target customers. Career-counselling programs shall be initiated in order to provide proper guidance to them and persuade them. The above strategies shall provide competitive advantage to Australian National University over the University of Melbourne.

Australian National University (ANU)

2017 Actual

2018 forecast

College foundation and diploma domestic load

2500

3200

College diploma and foundation international load

120

90

CGS Projected load (undergraduate)

10052

18000

CGS Projected load (Postgraduate)

10840

15000

International Onshore(undergraduate)

1614

2000

International onshore(post graduate)

1082

1500

Domestic fee paying(post graduate)

250

280

Western

2017 actual

2018 forecast

External Income Targets

26,997,000

37,000,000

HDR candidature

560

800

HDR completion target

140

160

HERDC publication target

1700

1950

There are mainly two types of costs namely direct and indirect. The direct cost includes the cost of travelling, research and maintenance and development of infrastructure. The indirect cost includes advertisement cost, investigator’s salary and cost for the development of professional course. The budget for the university should be around 1,200,000.

Conclusion:

Thus, it can be concluded that the ANU is already growing at a rapid pace and with the fast growing economy makes it the right time for business expansion. ANU can definitely achieve the goals and objectives they have set for 2018 and the forecast reflects rise in the profit margin. The university also wants to improve its international ranking and wants to move to the next ranking group which can be achieved through proper implementation of the defined strategy.

References:

ANU. (2017). ANU. Retrieved 28 May 2017, from https://www.anu.edu.au/

Baker, M. J. (2014). Marketing strategy and management. Palgrave Macmillan.

Census. (2017). Abs.gov.au. Retrieved 28 May 2017, from https://www.abs.gov.au/websitedbs/D3310114.nsf/Home/Census?OpenDocument&ref=topBar

Cross, J. C., Belich, T. J., & Rudelius, W. (2015). How marketing managers use market segmentation: An exploratory study. In Proceedings of the 1990 Academy of Marketing Science (AMS) Annual Conference (pp. 531-536). Springer International Publishing.

Grant, R. M. (2016). Contemporary strategy analysis: Text and cases edition. John Wiley & Sons.

Ho, J. K. K. (2014). Formulation of a systemic PESTLE analysis for strategic analysis. European academic research, 2(5), 6478-6492.

Hollensen, S. (2015). Marketing management: A relationship approach. Pearson Education.

Maarit Jalkala, A., & Keränen, J. (2014). Brand positioning strategies for industrial firms providing customer solutions. Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, 29(3), 253-264.

Madsen, T. L., & Walker, G. (2015). Modern competitive strategy. McGraw Hill.

Müller, H., & Hamm, U. (2014). Stability of market segmentation with cluster analysis–A methodological approach. Food Quality and Preference, 34, 70-78.

Network, A. (2017). Student Numbers at Australian Universities | AustralianUniversities.com.au. Australianuniversities.com.au. Retrieved 28 May 2017, from https://www.australianuniversities.com.au/directory/student-numbers/

Shabanova, L. B., Ismagilova, G. N., Salimov, L. N., & Akhmadeev, M. G. (2015). PESTLE-Analysis and SWOT-Analysis as the most important tools to strengthen the competitive advantages of commercial enterprises. Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences, 6(3), 705.

Waltinger, U., Tecuci, D., Picioroaga, F., Grigoras, C., & Sullivan, S. (2013, July). Market intelligence: linked data-driven entity resolution for customer and competitor analysis. In International Conference on Web Engineering (pp. 467-481). Springer Berlin Heidelberg.

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