Assignment: Stage 2 Strategic Leadership
The priority issues confronted by M & Co. in Great Britain region are tough trading climate in its high street, nominal margin, severe competition, rising trend of online shopping, supply chain management issue, environmental demands, enhanced property prices and fall of pound value due to Brexit phenomenon.
In relation to this, company has formulated its strategic proposal in order to create more visibility in market and reap the competitive advantage. Additionally, company focuses on bulling up strong and long term relationship.
The clothing business landscape in Great Britain has been aggressive in recent years and has put on increasing competitive pressure on the established and big brands.
The business environment of M& Co. highlight the influence of less politically stable environment, economic factors like GDP, social trend towards online shopping on the clothing business.
However, the technological access to latest developments and innovation is positive for business in reaching target markets, factory automations, and cost reductions. Also, the threat of new entrants, high bargaining power of buyers and high intensity of competitive rivalry is affecting the clothing business.
Thus, there is an increasing need for clothing manufacturers and retailer to identify their concern areas to effectively utilize the strategy in management of their business operations, physical and financial resources as well as their employee(Khurana and Ricchetti, 2016).
This is required to maintain the financial stability and profits in the short-run and to improve the success prospects in long-run. The purpose of this report is to present and indentify the main concern faced by the Scottish based clothing company M & Co. and to develop and evaluate a strategic proposal on one of the identified issue and with the use of RACE (reach, act, convert, engage) framework.
There are several issue faced by M &CO operating in the market of Great Britain which has reputation of a tough trading market. The priority issue for this clothing company is operating in tough trading climate inits high street climate, local shops growth variationsand popularity since last five years.
However, it is identified that high street climate has lead to shut down of a high number of stores and has been increasing as a time gap in between the opening and closing of apparel store.
A recent research by PwC (2018) revealed there have been disappearance of 1,123 stores from Great Britain high streets in recent years and there was opening of 1,569 shops and closure of 2,692 shops in 2017. Thus, the high street climate issue has creating a testing retail atmosphere for M &Co. business/ market operations in the high streets of the Great Britain market.
Another related priority issue is minimal margin owing to the fierce competition among the clothing industry players. This is leading to pricing pressure and discounts to attract the customers and also increasing the promotional and marketing costs.
The growth of online business led to the social trend of online shopping in Great Britain region is also a priority issue for M & Co. as the company strategy focus is to operate by opening physical stores and a large part of revenue generated is dependent on sales from its stores as compared to its online sales.
M& Co. has high investment in opening new stores across the Great Britain and plan to open 18 new stores (Drapers, 2018). It can be said that M & Co. is competing for same target group of customer with other clothing brand as well as with the internet shopping domain.
Internally, M& Co. property issue is its supply chain management as the increasing demand of online distribution channels, rise in cost of material, need for targeting online shoppers has put pressure on its supply chain to find new suppliers.
Also, the environmental pressure has put stress of supply chain to make it more transparent by use of new technologies and finding supplier for to make their supply chain sustainable. This demands the clothing company for execution of a robust technological strategy in its operating region.
Apart from this, the increase in property prices across the region has increased the cost of stores. The increasing cost is also due to rise in national living wage. Also, the phenomenon of Brexit has affected on the collapse of pound which has increase the prices and also impacted the customer spending to a certain extent on the brick and mortar stores (Business Insider, 2017).
In current businessenvironment,it is very important todevelop the strategic proposal in accordance with competitiveness of the market. At the same, CSO of M and Co. formulated the strategic proposal with the help of RACE modelChaffey and Patron, 2012).
It provides the practical grounds in digital marketing with the objective of improving the marketing objectives and focuses on KPI’s require for managing the business. There are four major stages in RACE model in order to the identify and tackle the major challenges that is competition level the market.
Reach:In this stage of RACE model, company would focus on the activities required for target the audience. Therefore, company would promote its brand through various websites portals such as company websites, microsites or social media pages.
Such practice will help the organisation in order to reach to the target market and create awareness about the company offerings to the customer. At the same time, it educates the customer about their products and services, their product range and various schemes (Slack and Brandon-Jones,2018)
Apart from that, these are useful medium to get insight about the customer likes, preferences and choices that helps the organisation while formulating and sales and marketing strategy. Moreover, it creates the connectivity mediums in between customer and business.
Act:In this stage, company would final that what are the mediumsit going to adopt and give more emphasis in order to interact with the customers. At the same time, company need to select the most appropriate interaction channels and best fit in all the important criteria’s.
More specifillay, it must be economical and suitable as per the business nature (Girard et al., 2013). it must be easy to access for the customer so that customer goes through the company information and its offerings. In regards to this, company would use the social media page and company website for providing company details and requesting for further details to ask to the customer.
Covert: In this stage of this model, CSO will think how company can take through the final step of the transaction and that can be payment method. In this way, it is related to the company payment structure.
At the same time. it drives the company to so many available alternatives of payment method(David and David, 2013). Therefore, company would practice the e-commerce transaction and accept the payment through it. This is the final major step the strategic plan.
Engage: While reaching to this step, company would focus on building long terms relationship with first time buyer in order create customer loyalty. At the same time, this is the foundation step for the business for driving the repeat business and business expansion further.
Apart from that, there are various method available in order to communicate with customer for taking their feedback and resolving their issues such as email, social media etc. and company wills also follow these communication channels (Parente and Strausbaugh-Hutchinson, 2014).
This methodenhances the online business and also enhance the customer loyalty towards the brand. Also, these channels are the most important part of the business for creating the company brand in the competitive market.
It can be summarised that the clothing company is facing several issue which it place priority. Some of these are identified as operating in tough trading climate in its high street climate, minimal margin, and fierce competition leading to pricing pressure and increase in the promotional and marketing costs,
increasing trend of online business and shopping, supply chain management issue, environmental pressure, increase in property prices and collapse of pound leading to reduce customer spending.
It is recommended to M& Co. to make use of new technologies in existing stores to create a new shopping experience to attract the customers to stores. This can be done by making the fitting room interactive so that it fulfil the customer information needs and avoid the need to look for information in Internet and provide a superior shopping experience.
It is also recommended to M& Co. to develop a digital mindset and strengthen its e-commerce market sales to reduce its dependence from store sales and to take advantage of growing internet shopping trend.
This can be done by improving the promotion and marketing campaigns and making use of social media channels to develop more subscribers and increase website traffic to reach the target customers in a cost –effective way.
Business Insider. 2017. ‘What we’re seeing is a revolution’: How the internet is remaking the British High Street. [Online] Available at:https://www.businessinsider.com/future-british-high-street-internet-brexit-retail-2017-8?IR=T(Accessed 16 April 2019).
Chaffey, D. and Patron, M., 2012. From web analytics to digital marketing optimization: Increasing the commercial value of digital analytics. Journal of Direct, Data and Digital Marketing Practice, 14(1), pp.30-45.
David, F.R. and David, F.R., 2013. Strategic management: Concepts and cases: A competitive advantage approach. Pearson.
Drapers. 2018. M&Co sales rise in ‘complex’ market. [Online] Available at:https://www.drapersonline.com/news/mco-sales-rise-in-complex-market/7031969.article (Accessed 16 April 2019).
Girard, L.F., Cerreta, M. and De Toro, P., 2017. Towards a local comprehensive productive development strategy: A methodological proposal for the Metropolitan City of Naples. Quality Innovation Prosperity, 21(1), pp.223-240.
Khurana, K. and Ricchetti, M., 2016. Two decades of sustainable supply chain management in the fashion business, an appraisal. Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management, 20(1), pp.89-104.
Parente, D. and Strausbaugh-Hutchinson, K., 2014. Advertising campaign strategy: A guide to marketing communication plans. Cengage Learning.
PwC. 2018. British high streets weather the most testing retail and leisure climate in five years as gap between store openings and closures widens. [Online] Available at: https://www.pwc.co.uk/press-room/press-releases/British-high-streets-weather-the-most-testing-retail-and-leisure-climate-in-five-years.html (Accessed 16 April 2019).
Slack, N. and Brandon-Jones, A., 2018. Operations and process management: principles and practice for strategic impact. Pearson UK.