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Report On Dymocks Marketing Audit Assignment

Question

Task: Assessment 2 requires students to work in groups of three on a selected company from the predetermined list below in order to prepare a comprehensive marketing audit for the company.
The aim of this assessment is to conduct a systematic, comprehensive and objective analysis of the marketing activities undertaken by the chosen company. In addition, you are also required to provide at least three (3) recommendations for the company. The marketing audit report should be no more than 3000 words in length excluding the executive summary, table of contents, tables, charts/graphs, the reference list and appendices. The written report is worth 30%. Groups are required to present only the comprehensive executive summary during tutorial classes in weeks 10 and 11.
Your assessment should show an application of relevant marketing concepts, theories, and analytic tools learnt in the unit. The mark for this assessment will depend primarily on presenting appropriate and supporting evidence and on the ability to critically write and present the marketing audit report.
Groups are to select one company from the list below.
Company Weblink
Lorna Jane https://www.lornajane.com.au/
Dymocks https://www.dymocks.com.au/
Stan https://www.stan.com.au/
Tyrepower https://www.tyrepower.com.au/

Answer

Executive Summary
The report on marketing audit assignment holds the discussion about the marketing audit of the organization Dymocks that is situated in Australia and found in the year 1879. The organizational macro analysis is done based on Australia. Many factors like political, economic and legal might affect the organization in terms of growth and development. The organization’s main competitors include Angus & Robertson Limited., Booktopia Pty Ltd., Waterstones, Readings Pty Ltd. and Magrudy Enterprises LLC. The company’s strengths and opportunities are used to eliminate the threats and the weaknesses using the TOWS matrix. The customer analysis of the organization states that the main target customers are book lovers, gamers and students. The marketing audit of the organization is developed based on the 4Ps of marketing. Specific solutions are presented at the end of the marketing audit assignment based on the issues that are identified.

INTRODUCTION
The present marketing audit assignment explores the importance of a marketing audit by mentioning that it provides a benchmark for monitoring market activities and highlights recommendations for improving the efficiency and performance of a business (Wang, Shen & Pu, 2019). A market audit is used by a company for reviewing its business strategies, as it provides the management with important information regarding customer behavior and insight into market conditions (Chong, Han & Park, 2017). This marketing audit assignment is prepared to objectively analyze the marketing functions of Dymocks, an Australian company. Its purpose is not to criticize the activities of Dymocks, but rather to identify and point out any working practices that could be more effective for the business. The report starts with a brief company analysis which discusses the status of the company. Then it proceeds to point out the overall political, economic, social, technological, environmental and legal scenario of Australia through PESTEL analysis, as most of the company’s business is operated from there. Subsequently, the report analyzes the factors of competition in the market by using Porter’s Five Forces. Customer’s behavioral patterns have also been briefly discussed. Next, the report on marketing audit assignment contains a SWOT and TOWS analysis, whereby the organization’s possible strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats are set out along with pointing out the possible methods of overcoming the weaknesses and threats. Further, segmentation, targeting and positioning or STP processes have been talked about. Marketing Mix Audit or the four P’s of marketing have also been analyzed. Overall, the areas where the business lacks and the areas where it can improve have been set out.

SITUATION ANALYSIS
Company analysis: The history of Dymocks can be traced back to 1879, when its founder William Dymock, started his book selling business by opening up a store in Sydney, Australia. By 1890s, Dymocks had amassed a million books in stock. Since then, Dymocks has expanded its business by leaps and bounds (Dymocks, 2020). In 1986, it set up a franchise system whereby people could obtain franchises from Dymocks and open up bookstores in their own localities. By the early 21st century, all states in Australia had Dymocks stores. Dymocks also opened up stores in major cities like Hobart, Melbourne and Brisbane. In 2015, it acquired Telegram, a wholesale stationary business and owner of luxury brands like Lamy and Moleskine (Dymocks, 2020). As per the research conducted on marketing audit assignment, Telegram’s retail business Milligram is one of the world’s best stores which sells designer stationary, office and lifestyle accessories, with retail stores in Melbourne. In 2018, it forayed into the education market by opening up Potentia, a business that offers tutoring services to high school students (Dymocks, 2020). Today, its business comprises of about 17-18 percent of the $1.2 billion book retailing market in Australia, making it the No. 2 market player, just behind Angus & Robertson, which holds a 20 percent share. It has more than 84 stores, most of which are franchises located in Australia, New Zealand and Hong Kong.

PESTEL analysis

Political

Australia is representative democracy, its institutions and practices largely modeled on British and North American traditions with Queen Elizabeth II being the constitutional monarch. It is also a member of G20 and the World Trade Organization. It has a close relationship with the US and has a stable political environment (The Conversation Trust (UK) Limited, 2018). However, it is discussed in this section of marketing audit assignment that Australia has drawn flak from the UN for failure in protecting human rights, indigenous rights, refugees etc.

Economic

Australia is one of the largest economies, holding the 13th spot. Business investments, household incomes and inflation will increase gradually. (OECD, 2018). The current rate of tax levied on companies is 30%. However, the tax rate for a business with aggregate turnover of less than $25 million is 27.5%. People can easily buy off-land property in the country at cheap prices, which are termed as “pure investments” (Statista, 2017). In this regard, the currency exchange rate also favors foreign investors, especially from the US. Its sports sector significantly contributes to the country’s GDP. The economic factor is directly related to the lifestyle and the buying patter of the customer. This might also affect the organization.

Social

One of the best countries in the world in terms of overall wealth, education, health and quality of life. Has a relatively small population of just 22.9 million. (Newshub, 2018). Inhabitants are multiple cultures and races, with indigenous people having migrated from Asia and lived in the country for millennia. With good public and private universities, it is a popular destination for international students (Robinson, 2018). Sports are an integral part of society, as Australia is one of the best in the world in cricket, hockey, swimming etc. The target customer base is huge and the organization can attract as many customers with their portfolio.

Technological

Australia is technologically advanced. The purchase in technology was around $65 billion dollars in 2019 (OECD, 2018). Local companies invest in technologies to cope up with consumers’ demands. Demand for tech consultancy services, cloud services, AI etc. contribute for most of investments. The technological access that the organization might get will help it to improve its services.

Environmental

Australia has a diverse landscape, with pristine beaches, mountains, forests and deserts. Biodiversity is also unparalleled, with flora and fauna so unique that they cannot be found anywhere else in the world. Millions of tourists visit this country every year (Workman, 2018). However, climate change is identified as a national threat to Australia. The recent wildfire destroyed a large part of the ecosystem. Other issues like water scarcity and infectious diseases also persist. The climatic conditions and climate change might affect the supply chain of the organization.

Legal

The legal factors of the country are huge to be covered exhaustively. However, a few main legislations are important for the organization. Australia has sound fair trading laws, consumer laws and competition laws. The Fair Work Act, 2009 governs employment and the Competition and Consumer Act, 2010 governs businesses and consumers. 

Competitive analysis
The main competitors of the organization mentioned herein marketing audit assignment are Angus & Robertson Limited., Booktopia Pty Ltd., Waterstones, Readings Pty Ltd. and Magrudy Enterprises LLC. The competitive market of the organization can be defined with the Porter’s Five Forces Analysis.

Porter’s Five Forces

Threat of New Entrants

The threat of the new entrant is moderate because there is a possibility that the new entrant might be able to have a better business plan or a better stock of books or a more attractive store. On the other hand, the new entrants might now have the financial support to sustain their business.

Bargaining Power of Suppliers

The bargaining power of the suppliers is a high threat because the number of suppliers is low and thus, the organization has to maintain a healthy relationship with the suppliers to get proper and timely supplies. 

Bargaining Power of Buyers

The bargaining power of the buyers is a high threat because the industry has many competitors. The target customer base is limited, which makes the threat even more high.

Threat of Substitution

The threat of substitution is moderate because the switching cost is more or less the same.

Competitive Rivalry

There is intense competition in the market, which makes the competitive rivalry a high threat for the organization.

Customer analysis
The organization explored in the marketing audit assignment has a target customer base looking for books and stationary goods. The main customers of the organization are the casual shopper, the hard to find shoppers and the loyal shoppers. The casual shoppers are the ones who like to shop stationary or sometimes like to purchase a particular series of book or novel for their collection (Throsby, Zwar & Morgan, 2017). Whereas, the marketing audit assignment also signifies that the hard to find shoppers are the ones who enter a book store or a stationary shop and buy a lot of things that catches their eye. The loyal shoppers on the other hand are the book lovers who live reading books. The organization values its customers and provides best services at its stores (Billett, Dymock & Choy, 2016). One of the main customer bases is comprised of kids, as the organization sells a series of kids’ books that are frequently bought for schools and even personal use.

SWOT analysis

Strengths

One of the biggest strengths of the organization is its diverse range of products, which successfully caters to the varied demands of the customers (Dymocks, 2020). It partners with various brands and operates as their official distributor in Australia. The organization also has a strong brand reputation, since it has been operating for more than a century.

Weaknesses

One of the weaknesses of the organization is the fact that its operations are only limited to Australia and New Zealand (Dymocks, 2020). The fact that the populations of both these countries are quite low means that there is not a large customer base.

Opportunities

The biggest opportunity of the organization outlined in the context of marketing audit assignment is its potential for global expansion. This can be achieved by applying the franchise system, which has worked successfully in Australia. This will help the organization to gain larger customer base. Also, it can consider increasing the range of merchandise it deals with, after conducting a market research.

Threats

As per the readings considered to develop this marketing audit assignment, one of the biggest threats faced by the organization is the stiff competition in the market, due to companies like Angus & Robertson, Booktopia, Waterstones, Collins Booksellers etc. Further, Amazon Kindle, which has worldwide popularity, offers a much larger database of books to customers at attractive prices, with many books being offered free of cost.

TOWS analysis

Opportunities

Threats

Strengths

The organization can use the brand image and portfolio to expand its services internationally and gain a larger and loyal customer base. Using the past experiences of product development, the organization can improve and expand its portfolio as well.

The organization’s loyal customer base and strong brand reputation might help to tackle the competitive market with a few enhancements. The enhancements portfolio of the organization might also help to attract more consumers.

Weaknesses

Since the business is limited to Australia and New Zealand, the organization can utilize the opportunity to expand its geographical reach.

The weaknesses that the organization has might increase the threat to the organization. The company might face issues regarding a limited customer base and low profit margin.

DISCUSSION OF SEGMENTATION, TARGETING AND POSITIONING (STP)
Segmentation
This segment mentioned in the marketing audit assignment signifies that the organization mainly uses the behavioral and psychological segmentation processes. This is because customer behavior is unpredictable and the behavioral segmentation that the organization uses is on the basis how the customers use a product or how loyal they are to towards the brand and what are the benefits they look for. On the other hand, the psychological segmentation is based on the personality, lifestyle, values and risk aversion of the customers.

Targeting
The organization’s target market comprise of people who belong to the age group of 6-60 years, irrespective of the gender and the profession. The target customer base includes gamers, book lovers, kids and students (Dymocks, 2020). The main target customer base is comprised of the book lovers and the students. The targeting of the organization often depends on the macro environment of the organization.

Positioning
Positioning is the most important factors of the STP process. The organization stresses on the fact about how they can create more value amongst customers. The organization offers yearly discounts and maintains a healthy relationship with the customers. Apart from this, it is also clear on this marketing audit assignment that the organization also makes sure that its stock is filled before they are sold out and that all recent books and other goods reach the store as soon as they are released into the market. The organization also has a website where the customers can simply order books and get it delivered to their doorstep without even visiting the stores.

MARKETING MIX AUDIT
The most effective way to audit the marketing process of an organization is through the analysis of the 4Ps of marketing.

4Ps of Marketing

Product

The product portfolio of the organization is comprised of books, merchandise, Blu-Ray disks, games and stationary goods (Dymocks, 2020). The organization successfully meets the requirements of the target customers with the help of its product portfolio. The strategy that the organization uses is that it tries to identify the needs and the requirements of the customers using behavioral and psychological segmentation. The targeting of customers is based on age, lifestyle and loyalty and not on gender or profession.

Price

Dymocks uses competitive pricing strategy, which is the most effective, given the intense competition in the market. The organization offers a fair discount in the printed prices of the books. Apart from this, it also offers book lovers or the people who purchase books online with a reward price of $1.10 for specific books (Dymocks, 2020). This helps the organization to attract more customers and increase the customer base. On the other hand, the organization also offers an easy check out on its website using e-wallets which are accessible only on the purchase of $80 to $2,000.

Place

The two main distributional channels used by the organization are the retailers and its website where people can place the orders. The organization franchises in most parts of Australia through various retail stores in convenient locations that are easily accessible to the customers. Dymocks also makes sure that the website from where books are ordered, has a simple interface and can be easily understood by the customers. The company makes sure that the supply chain is managed effectively so that stocks reach the stores on time. The organization can increase the number of retail stores so that the customers do not have to look for long.

Promotion

The organization uses two main promotional channels which are the organization’s website and local newspapers. The newspapers are a part of the traditional marketing process which helps the organization to reach out to the local customers and make them aware of the company. On the other hand, the website posts various details about the offers and discounts that are offered by the company. Furthermore, discount coupons are also distributed among the loyal customers for their next purchase when they visit the store (Mantrala & Kanuri, 2018). This helps to keep the customers engaged and make them come back. Billboard marketing and TV channel marketing are also few of the effective option of promotion that the organization can adopt. This will also help to attract the attention of the customers.

What are the valuable recommendations based on the case scenario of marketing audit assignment?
The recommendations given below are based on the SWOT analysis and other issues that are identified in the aforementioned discussion and analysis within this marketing audit assignment:

  • International Expansion – International expansion is one of the most important steps that the organization can take. The organization can expand its services to a country where the target customer base is huge and it can take this opportunity to make its global presence known (Xu, Zeng & Chen, 2018). This will help Dymocks to improve their brand reputation and increase its brand awareness globally. The international expansion can be done by using franchising as it is the market entry strategy which the organization is already familiar with. This point discussed in the marketing audit assignment will allow the organization to utilize its strengths as well as opportunities effectively. The organization can analyze the external environment of the countries and choose the preferred one.
  • Digital Marketing – Digital marketing is one of the most important channels of marketing and promotion (Dietrich, Rundle-Thiele & Kubacki, 2017). The social media marketing offers the cheapest and the biggest platform to promote a brand among a huge mass at once. Through the digital marketing, the organization can reach out to the international customers as well as the locals. Digital marketing can also include email promotions that are sent to the regular customers (Chaffey & Ellis-Chadwick, 2019). Many organizations adopt animation and special effects to make the advertisements look attractive and also to make them interactive. These promotional ideas help the organization to engage the customer.
  • New Market Penetration – Market penetration offers the organization growth and development. It is stated in the marketing audit assignment that the organization can ensure that they do not have to go through a loss. Creating new opportunities such as subsidiaries in new industries will help the company to build a strong presence (Ran, et al., 2016). Financially, this will stabilize the organization and make sure it sustains through multiple options. The company might witness a growth in sales and will be able to gain higher market shares. For example, Starbucks has many subsidiaries that deal with different industries and different products and services.
  • Digital Library – Digital library development will be a unique way to attract the customers towards the organization (Hofmann & Radlinski, 2016). The digital library is the process where the customers can get access to the electronic preview of the books that they prefer, at a minimal cost. The customers can choose the duration for how long they want to keep the book. The books will not be downloadable or printable. The preview of the book will be stopped as soon as the tenure ends.

CONCLUSION
From the above study developed in the marketing audit assignment, it can be concluded that Dymocks Books is one of the largest book retail organizations located in Australia. The organizational actions and operations might be affected by the political, economic, social, technological, legal and environmental factors of Australia’s environment. The market competition is intense with brands trying to sustain in the industry. The strengths of the organization explored in the above section of marketing audit assignment include diverse range of products and strong brand reputation. While, its weakness is that it operates only in Australia and New Zealand with a low customer base. In this marketing audit assignment, it is mentioned that the organization has a huge opportunity to expand its services internationally and expand its portfolio as well. That segmentation process is based on the behavioral and psychological segmentation. The target market base comprises of gamers, book lovers, kids and students who are segmented on the basis of the age, lifestyle, values etc. The product portfolio of the organization is comprised of books, merchandise, Blu-Ray disks, games and stationary goods and it uses the competitive pricing strategy. The organization promotes its services via local newspapers and the company website. The recommendations based on the issues that have been identified have also been presented in the marketing audit assignment.

REFERENCES
Billett, S., Dymock, D., & Choy, S. (2016). Conceptions, Purposes and Processes of Ongoing Learning across Working Life. Marketing audit assignment In Supporting Learning Across Working Life (pp. 289-312). Cham: Springer.

Chaffey, D., & Ellis-Chadwick, F. (2019). Digital marketing. London: Pearson UK.

Chong, E., Han, C., & Park, F. C. (2017). Deep learning networks for stock market analysis and prediction: Methodology, data representations, and case studies. Expert Systems with Applications, 83, 187-205.

Dietrich, T., Rundle-Thiele, S., &Kubacki, K. (2017). Segmentation in social marketing. Singapore: Springer.

Dymocks. (2020). About. Retrieved from https://www.dymocks.com.au/about/dymocks

Hofmann, K., Li, L., &Radlinski, F. (2016). Online evaluation for information retrieval. Foundations and trends in information retrieval, 10(1), 1-117.

Mantrala, M. K., & Kanuri, V. K. (2018). 14. Marketing optimization methods. Handbook of Marketing Analytics: Methods and Applications in Marketing Management, Public Policy, and Litigation Support, 324.

Newshub. (2018).Andrew Little stands by criticism of Australia despite hostile backlash. Retrieved fromhttps://www.newshub.co.nz/home/politics/2018/07/andrew-little-stands-by-criticism-of-australia-despite-hostile-backlash.html

OECD. (2018).Australia – Economic forecast summary. Marketing audit assignment Retrieved from http://www.oecd.org/eco/outlook/australia-economic-forecast-summary.htm

Ran, W., Jarman, H., Luna-Reyes, L. F., Zhang, J., Andersen, D., Tayi, G., ... & Andersen, D. (2016). Supply-chain transparency and governance systems: Market penetration of the I-choose system. In Information, Models, and Sustainability (pp. 67-92). Cham: Springer.

Robinson, N. (2018).Australia hosting unprecedented numbers of international students. Retrieved from http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-04-18/australia-hosting-unprecedented-numbers-international-students/9669030

Statista. (2017).The 30 largest countries in the world by total area (in square kilometers). Retrieved from https://www.statista.com/statistics/262955/largest-countries-in-the-world/ 

The Conversation Trust (UK) Limited. (2018).UN slams Australia’s human rights record. Retrieved from https://theconversation.com/un-slams-australias-human-rights-record-87169

Throsby, D., Zwar, J., & Morgan, C. (2017). Australian book readers: Survey method and results. Macquarie Economics Research Paper, 1, 2017.

Wang, Y., Shen, H., & Pu, G. (2019, December). Application of Big Data in B2C E-commerce Market Analysis. In International conference on Big Data Analytics for Cyber-Physical-Systems (pp. 870-876). Singapore: Springer.

Workman, D. (2018).Australia’s Top 10 Imports. Retrieved from http://www.worldstopexports.com/australias-top-10-imports/

Xu, X., Zeng, S., & Chen, H. (2018). Signaling good by doing good: How does environmental corporate social responsibility affect international expansion?. Marketing audit assignment Business Strategy and the Environment, 27(7), 946-959.

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