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Stonewall's barbershop was established in the year 1972. The company has primarily catered to males in the neighborhood. Due to changing dynamics in the business environment, there is dire need to improve the business so as to remain competitive in the market. The analysis the company carried out is very revealing. There are new players in the market who have brought competition hence the need for Stonewall's management to come up with strategies to surmount the competition. Competition is one of the things that any business can not avoid. External factors always dictate the internal operations and organizational structure of a firm (Pearce & Robinson, 2005).
For starters, salons which have traditionally not catered for male clientele now are taking a new tide. They are now offering services to male clientele too. On top of this, new barbershops are coming into business in the environment. Stonewall's has two options, either beat the competition or be beat by it. Stonewalls will have to come up with ways to beat the competition or they will be beat by it. Some companies believe that they can't grow without tearing their opponent into pieces and this could be a threat to Stonewall. (Haris J, 2009). There are two main strategies that can be used to make sure that Stonewall beats the looming competition and remains to be the market leader namely cost leadership and product differentiation strategies.
Cost Leadership strategy
This strategy comes from the fact that a business has ability to produce and market the same goods as her competitors but using less capital hence selling it at a lower price that the competitors can not match. (Business Resource Software Inc., 1994) Day Spa is one of the main competitors new in the market. That means they have more overheads which mainly include setup costs and the need to break even soon. This is an added advantage to Stonewall's Barbershop since it has been in business for a longer time. They don't have to incur some costs. This can make them come up with an attractive pricing package. People generally like to save money and this can be a good incentive to attract new customers while retaining the old ones. Let us look at the strengths and weaknesses of this strategy
Product Differentiation Strategy
Stonewall's should take advantage of a change in the views of his customers as the male clients now have more interest grooming services and pampering. Currently Stonewall's offers basic barbershop services such as haircuts and shaves but it is high time the company thought of offering additional services that may include manicures, pedicures, hair coloring, hairstyling, and massages. New services could also include tattoos, aroma therapy, a cigar room, Jacuzzi, tanning beds, and large screen TVs. This will also reach out to new clients to increase incremental sales to current customers.
The demographics study reveled that the larger clientele of Stonewall's were those males in their prime years. The younger generation should be lured through such new services. They are the ones that will guarantee the longevity of the business since they are going to be here for a longer time. The enterprise should always look out for gaps in the market and fill them by offering what the competitors have left out or ignored. That way, Stonewall's will always stay ahead of the competition. This strategy has the following strengths and weaknesses.
Competition is actually good for business. If handled well, it can actually help the organization to be more profitable than it was before. The strategies of product differentiation and cost leadership have been proved to work and they can work for Stonewall too.
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