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MS4105 Marketing Principles

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  • Course Code: MS4105
  • University: University Of Gloucestershire
  • Country: United Kingdom


Topic: Research and analyse Company Y in terms of its market / marketing environment and CSR practices.




Business activity is related to the marketing effectiveness of the organization. Sales activities of products or services need to furnish strongly so that the company can make a stand over the business market. Market involvement, product or service culture and attract people towards through the service is the concern matter in this paper. Virgin Atlantic is one of the major airline companies in the UK, and the brand name with its brand identity is the most important thing to analyse the business market of the company ( 2018). In case of marketing approach, the company has established their market position and develop an effective target customer for the company. In which process the company aligns their business with the marketing need and accumulate more people and through their innovative strategy of enhancement in a market is the major issue of this business establishment.

Background of the company

The company deals in airbus services and as much as customers engaged with the brand their operation position will increase. 33 destinations are operated by the company, and 45 fleet sizes are counted in this organization ( 2018). In this airline business, 51% of the business is owned by the Virgin group and 49% of the share owned by the Delta Air Lines of Singapore ( 2018). Increase in customer number and deliver premium service to the customers is the main aspect of this airline company. There are three cabins like Economy, Premier Economy and Upper Class and all these sections are filled with passengers. In 1982, the company named as British Atlantic Airways and deliver their business in some of the areas and after that in 1984; the inaugural service of the company had come and promoted their activities ( 2018).

Marketing and financial performance of the company

Virgin Atlantic has celebrated their 32nd year of the anniversary with the red-hot campaign. The marketing perspective of the company is always innovative, as they have felt the importance of implementation of this process ( 2018). In most of the cases, companies are decreasing the rate of the travel along with the extra benefit of consuming more customers, nut their attitude and process are entirely different, and that makes them different from others (Lin 2012). There is 5.3 billion business are jostling in the UK, among them, it will be challenging operation for the company to evolve the brand name of the company. Virgin Atlantic has done this thing with the help of their entrepreneurship and fun loving attitude. This is an investment that levied by the company to explore the view of adventure, and thus people desire, and curves have come in this way, despite being a moderate budget and size of the operation. The flash pack or the start up all these are marketing operation, and operating revenue also increased by that matter. Increase in £153.3 million amount signifies the value of the process and that also impacted the UK business market.


Macro environmental analysis

In case of Virgin Atlantic, macro environment or used for PEST analysis is important for the developing understanding of future political, economic, social and technological aspect of the nation. The parameter of influencing the business and the contribution of these factors are important in that case.

Political environment

The political situation is challenging for the company. The major reason behind the political dilemma is the terrorist attack in Nice, Brussels and Paris. The situation of attack has changed the political framework of every nation and more restriction, and business understanding is there. Another reason in this aspect is the setback that initiated by Brexit (Whyte, Prideaux and Sakata 2012). Economic upheaval and uncertainty in business have come on that time, and the whole nation emerges into the turmoil. Political uncertainty is the reason for what business is not easy making its mark. In case of protection in the business referendum and penetrate the market of another nation is not always fruitful for the organisation. There are some good political aspects is there in case of Virgin Atlantic. The third runway at Heathrow has initiated by the political influence of the nation.

Economic environment

After the Brexit issue, for some reasons pound value has dropped down, and British Airlines including Virgin also face the same. This economic turmoil has happened in 2016, and that is the first time the organisation has faced this kind of economic problem and Brexit decision is liable for that. In 2016, two other things are also placed like price fall situation for fuel and rate of interest also in diminution process.

Social environment

Some of the particular seasons are not suitable for business, and people do not like to travel on that time. The peak summer season is one of that season, where air traffic controller strike has happened. In France, the situation of ATC union strike and series of labour reform case is the most important socialist move that Virgin has done (Hidalgo-Ruz et al. 2012). From the socialist point of view strike in UK, France, Switzerland, Span, Italy hampers the business of Virgin. These are the socialistic issue where people are responsible for the change in business dimension.

Technological environment

Technologically upgraded and simultaneous innovation change needs to be introduced by the organization so the process of enhancement and development activities will run in a systematic manner. Digital technologies use such as AIR4, or IT bases passenger service system all these need to introduce in all the section of the organization. For the development of technologically strong, Virgin Atlantic needs to formulate their service to reform the process and served something special for passengers (Garaba and Dierssen 2018). Kiosk facility, Flight service manages, crew tablet device all these sections are in the technological environment, and these will help to accumulate business and make flow in business also.


Industry Structure analysis

Through the Porter five forces model, competitive analysis of the company can be judged. In other words, there are some external factors associated with a company and their market. Associated factors and concerning threats along with the structure is important for the development of business in any section in the world.

Power of Suppliers in case of Virgin Atlantic is high in manner. The main function of this airline is used to supply fuel to different nations that are the reason suppliers position is high for the company. In case of the manufacturing process, Airbus and Boeing products are the main product line for them (Nhuta 2012). A competitive advantage is perceived by that process as the company has this positive aspect of manufacturing such products, which is not manufactured by other companies.

Competitors are quite strong in the UK, but they have maintained their brand name and also establish their mark in the UK. The fare is an issue for them as they mix innovation with their services and that took a lot of effort from the company. So in case of the power of buyers, the high rating is there also for Virgin Atlantic. There are some new airlines also, and customers have the option to choose between them. If facility and other services are better than this company, the customer will choose another one, as they have available options for that.

Potential entrants are high in case of airline operation in the UK. Some of the small companies’ alliance with other companies and make the business market big, in another case, there are some big companies stay in the dormant situation can come up and declare their establishment in style (Carter 2013). Attraction and facilities are the important sections of promotion, and if the promotional strategy is impactful, then it will be a huge concern for the business market development. Flybe Flights, Aer Lingus flights, BMI regional flights, Thomas cook all these companies are developing their market and proposed a good work in the field of airline industries.

There are profound changes in the threat of substitutes. Virgin Atlantic covers long-haul routes, and that is the reason, no such airlines companies will come and penetrate their business as most of the companies margining their line in regional and national territories. However, the thrilling experience and innovative presence provided by this company are remarkable (Schmuck 2014). So there are low chances of proclaiming a substitute for this company as most of the trust-worthy customers are involved with the company.

In the UK, the business rivalry is always high, whatever the range and experience of the business carry. So in that case, all associate airlines are doing their job in a significant manner so that competitive rivalry is considered as high in level. Small airlines are grouping and make one uniform company so the possible threat will become curtail, and for that reason competitive rivalry becomes high. Virgin Atlantic has to face this kind of situation as some of the instances have come that effects the business section. Fly Emirates has recently signed a contract of 90 A380's, and this news is fuelling the competition as well.


Strategic position analysis and impact on marketing performance

Strategic position making is the positional mapping of the company to determine the position of the company as well as understand their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of the company.


As per the brand reputation of the company and decision made from the customers, the company is considered as the sixth world best airlines. Quality, punctuality and speed are the prime aspects of the company. This is the only British carrier that has made its name under the top 10. The modernized touch in the fleet is important in that become a strength for the organisation to pull a large amount of customer towards the organisation. The biggest technological transformation only happens in this company (Whyte, Prideaux and Sakata 2012). Mobile application service for customers and online booking facility are the better operational innovation that Virgin Atlantic has introduced in the UK. Customers get satisfied with these innovative processes. Improved mobile technology, functional kiosk activity and financial leverage provided by the company. The best cabin crew award in 2016, possessed by this company. The reason behind their winning is the behavioural change and implementation of desired comfort deliverance to customers.  


Branson is one of the weaknesses in case of Virgin Atlantic. The relationship is not productive by any means like some decisions are taken by the management of the Virgin need to concern with the spokespersons of Branson. In future, if Branson moved down from the deal, devastating consequences waiting for the company. Another weakness signifies in that section is the use of the same route (Large et al. 2013). Virgin is also following the same route that Emirates or Etihad has used. In case of expanding the brand name, market position of business need to be wider. This is another weakness of the company as their business radius is not big. Europe, especially North America is the business field of this company. In case of emerging market in Asia, more routes needed to be introduced so that business dimension becomes big. The same situation enforced by the company in Middle-East sections so that business range will develop. Staff retention is another weakness that faced the company.


Government initiation of making extra runway or to expand the port for flights is the best opportunity they get. Some of the direct flights are there in case of long distance run. In case of most long-distance Airbus, there is a halt, where the Airbus stags and people from the Airbus have to move another one form the same company to reach their destination. This is an opportunity for the organization to have more flight that can cover the entire long-haul distances and customer will prefer their brand (Mayer, Ryley and Gillingwater 2015). Low fuel price and promote the growth of the market in case of benefiting the company is the major opportunity for the company.


Digital disruption is the first risk that company has to face. Brexit is the most concerning threat in term of economic loss and stagnant growth rate of the market. Air traffic control strike in France and conflict in between the two Virgin Atlantic pilot unions are considered as a threat. In the UK, extreme rain, winter, smog condition is quite normal and in that case process to mitigate this barrier of flying with this condition and implement some technology that boosts the Airbus to fly in that condition with full confidence, is considers as another threat for the company.


Evaluation of marketing performance

Through the Ansoff's matrix, organisation objective setting can be understood. There are four sections, and each section carries the market growth analysis and foundation of directional policy.

Market Penetration

The product-market strategy is the original strategy that company based on the normal times and in case of penetrating more customer other than the existing one, new strategies are required (Notis 2015). An increase of sale and their recent service and products are the key factors of this penetrating process.

Product Development

New products in the market are always creating a centre of attraction for business, and that is the reason most of the innovative products are formulated by the company. Existing product development phase is completely a different section of business, and that will help in case of new development policies.

Market Development 

In case of market development, use of products and their new strategies to make them sellable in the market is the key concern of the business and in that case, selling existing products in a new form is a concerning issue in business (Kuo et al. 2016). Strategic involvement in business and use of product and services is the concern issue in that case. In case of Virgin Atlantic, services are the concern matter, and procedure of service may change in that case.


The factor of globalisation and liberalization has risen in this form, and the use of common market and their marketing feature may change the dimension of the business. Movement of current products and services along with the use of new products is the issue of diversification. The process involves common market in most of the cases and change in lifestyle is also declares in this form of dealing process, and Virgin Atlantic has this reputation in business, so their understanding in new market and involvement with current products are essential in that case.

These four strategic aspects define in the Ansoff's model bears risk constituent with them. Even though Market infiltration is repeatedly considered as a low-risk approach but diversification is measured as a high-risk development approach as it accumulates huge speculation that increases owed to concurrently movement into fresh products and new markets (Kuo et al. 2016). Product expansion policy and the Market expansion approach, to become the most successful organisation Virgin Atlantic ought to follow both of them. This is the development that Ansoff’s matrix has done in case of business model approach.

Current CSR practice of the company and ethical issues

There are some core responsibilities of CSR department of Virgin Atlantic, and that impacted on the human rights, ethics and government and in case of community build up. The transparency in case of conducting ethical issues is noted by them and that also impacted over the services that are associated with. In such cases, community development is the essential matter for the business and to provide the opportunity practice, and policies conducting ethical audits are important and significant (Notis 2015). As per the case of development in concern, stakeholders' initiation or involvement is the most effective way of business progressing way of the business establishment. Governing bodies and executive authorities, Employees, Suppliers, Community and Customers are the general stakeholder in business, and that impacted on their surrounding business mapping and progression.

Preferred catering experience and quality food and operation fare trade process is suitable for the customer retention. In case of community building "Change the Children" initiative, which is taken by them is the most original project for them. Sustainable procurement policy covers all the aspect of supplier movements and delivers the significant product convention (Kuo et al. 2016). Employees have to work in the different condition in some cases and raise in money is the most effective issue in that case. Safety, security, financial health-related issue is conducted by a regulatory authority or government bodies.


Therefore it can be concluded that Virgin Atlantic has faced some of the issues in recent past and through the involvement of CSR interference this problem can be mitigated. Entire the United Kingdom Civil Aviation Authority is grasped by Virgin Atlantic, and it operates different long routes cities. The paper also analyses the external issues, industry structure analysis, posting of the company and state the some of the competitive rivalry of them and also declared the possible steps to be initiated by the organization to mitigate these problems. CSR activities and their involvement with stakeholders are also mentioned in that case, and that will provide an extra bit of responsibility to the company to establish their market in different countries. The situation Virgin Atlantic in at the moment and generating profit from markets will show an excellent continuation after three to five years. As the company focuses on the customers thus, more customer engagement events will initiate and more packages and transatlantic services will encourage their profit and development of business in the entire market.



Arjomandi, A. and Seufert, J.H., 2014. An evaluation of the world's major airlines' technical and environmental performance. Economic Modelling, 41, pp.133-144.

Carter, J., 2013. Marketing Plan Example: Virgin Atlantic Little Red.

Garaba, S.P. and Dierssen, H.M., 2018. An airborne remote sensing case study of synthetic hydrocarbon detection using short wave infrared absorption features identified from marine-harvested macro-and microplastics. Remote Sensing of Environment, 205, pp.224-235.

Hidalgo-Ruz, V., Gutow, L., Thompson, R.C. and Thiel, M., 2012. Microplastics in the marine environment: a review of the methods used for identification and quantification. Environmental science & technology, 46(6), pp.3060-3075.

Kuo, T.C., Kremer, G.E.O., Phuong, N.T. and Hsu, C.W., 2016. Motivations and barriers for corporate social responsibility reporting: Evidence from the airline industry. Journal of Air Transport Management, 57, pp.184-195.

Large, P.A., Agnew, D.J., Álvarez Pérez, J.Á., Barrio Froján, C., Cloete, R., Damalas, D., Dransfeld, L., Edwards, C.T., Feist, S., Figueiredo, I. and González, F., 2013. Strengths and weaknesses of the management and monitoring of deep-water stocks, fisheries, and ecosystems in various areas of the world—a roadmap toward sustainable deep-water fisheries in the Northeast Atlantic?. Reviews in Fisheries Science, 21(2), pp.157-180.

Lin, W.C., 2012. Financial performance and customer service: An examination using activity-based costing of 38 international airlines. Journal of Air Transport Management, 19, pp.13-15.

Mayer, R., Ryley, T. and Gillingwater, D., 2015. Eco-positioning of airlines: Perception versus actual performance. Journal of Air Transport Management, 44, pp.82-89.

Nhuta, S., 2012. An analysis of the forces that determine the competitive intensity in the airline industry and the implications for strategy.

Notis, I., 2015. Virgin Atlantic Airways: A Look Inside the Airline’s Green Initiatives.

Schmuck, R., 2014. Operations strategies. Regional Formation and Development Studies, 7(2), pp.133-141. 2018 The Golden Rule of Marketing retrieved from: [Accessed from 8th April 2018] 2018 Virgin Atlantic profits rise for second year in a row retrieved from: [Accessed from 9th April 2018] 2018 Virgin Atlantic retrieved from: [Accessed on 8th April 2018]

Whyte, R., Prideaux, B. and Sakata, H., 2012. The evolution of virgin australia from a low-cost carrier to a full-Service airline–implications for the tourism industry. In Advances in hospitality and leisure (pp. 215-231). Emerald Group Publishing Limited.

Whyte, R., Prideaux, B. and Sakata, H., 2012. The evolution of virgin australia from a low-cost carrier to a full-Service airline–implications for the tourism industry. In Advances in hospitality and leisure (pp. 215-231). Emerald Group Publishing Limited.

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