Limited Brands, parent company to Bath and Body, currently employs an integrated marketing plan for its distribution of the Bath and Body product line (L Brand International Strategy 2014, Para 1). This strategy could be combined with the prospect of a joint venture for a successful expansion into the United Kingdom market. Integrated marketing channels can be challenging to manage but they are the most effective way to connect marketing and customer service, providing benefits for both company and consumer (Ellis, 2011).
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A successful integrated market entry strategy starts and ends with a focus on customers. The needs of the customer must be the top priority, because the success of the company depends on the loyalty of the customers it attracts (Ellis, 2011). Bath and Body is already a well-recognized brand in many different parts of the world, providing a starting point for market entry (L Brand International Brand, 2014, Para 2). It is also important for this strategy to be effective that all aspects of the company from manufacturing, distribution, and sales are operating together. This step requires effective constant communication. Each channel to the customer has strengths and weaknesses, using the strengths of one to offset the weakness of another will assist the company’s customer effectiveness while reducing overall costs (Ellis, 2011). Bath and Body has a well-established product chain that provides products at many price points. This allows for the expansion to test different markets with smaller trials, then capitalize on the areas where customers purchasing. SWOT Analysis
The method of measuring a companies strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats is SWOT analysis. This method assist companies in making decisions by providing decision makers a straightforward way to analysis both internal and external information pertaining to company operations or potential expansions (SWOT Analysis, 2014). Analysis of potential expansion to the United Kingdom by Bath and Body provides potential strengths of recognized brand imaging, reasonable price points compared to current options, customer loyalty, and providing of job opportunities in a recovering market. Weaknesses include competitive market, department stores carrying similar products, and the lack of a green product line. Market opportunities include the availability of e-commerce, social media, and understanding of the market. Threats include outside competition, lower priced products in market, and a recovering economy.
Ellis, D. (2011, September 7). 5 components of a successful integrated marketing strategy. Social Media Today. Retrieved on February 28, 2014, from http://socialmediatoday.com/debraellis/352405/5-components-successful-integrated-marketing-strategy L Brands. (2014). International Strategy. Retrieved on February 28, 2014 from http://www.lb.com/international/strategy/default.aspx SWOT Analysis. (2014). Investopedia. Retrieved on February 28, 2014, from http://www.investopedia.com/terms/s/swot.asp