In the beginning of 1990, Al Ries and Jack Trout, the master of positioning, mentioned that the extension of the line of the big possibility of being not successful. Created the new taste or the new package not a method that was ideal to support the market share. Ries and Trout also mentioned that the easiest way for a brand success in positioning their self on the customer's mind are if they had one or two special word that hid in the consumer's mind. For example, Volvo that was identical to “safety”, Sony was identical to “Innovation” or Coca-Cola with “the real thing”.
According to Ries and Trout, the step in Coca-Cola that previously created the Coke Diet will tend to confuse the consumer because of the Coke Diet not “the real thing”. The consumer's reason for drinking Coca-Cola was because of the height of the level of sugar that was contained by him, and so that made Coca-Cola as “the real thing”.
Afterwards, some time before, Coca-Cola again created the new product with the make of “Coca-Cola Zero” with 100% of Coca-Cola, 0% of the level of sugar and calorie. That was strange was, evidently Coca-Cola Zero was not far was different from the Coke Diet. However, Coca-Cola stressed that Coca-Cola Zero will not be influential towards the Coke Diet; because of the target market is different.
Coca-Cola apparently still stayed insisting to endorse the name of their brand to make in carrying out the extension of the line. In fact, inputs from the media said that the step could plunge this famous make. Al Ries then said that by being launched Coca-Cola Zero, positioning about “the real thing” could be increasingly will be lost on the consumer's mind.
There are two reasons why a company launches new product development, for line extension or brand extension. The first reason is for revenue growth, and the second one is to make brand image strongest than before. Coca-Cola Zero will be aimed at consumers in their late teens and early-to-mid-twenties, who currently are not major consumers of diet soft drinks. Although young adults say they have a strong interest in consuming food and drinks products that help maintain physical health, they are still less likely than older consumers to actually buy diet-specific products.
A major reason for this is that most diet products available are not cool. Diet Pepsi was explicitly marketed at middle-aged Americans for many years, with advertising campaigns encouraging them to relive their youth; Diet Coke is similarly associated with the iconic Diet Coke Break campaign aimed at female office workers.
Coca-Cola will have a challenging job positioning Coca-Cola Zero more effectively to 18-24s, who are the hardest consumer group to target through conventional marketing campaigns. Having grown up in a media-saturated world, they are skeptical of brands, and do not believe that advertising addresses their needs as individuals.
The company will need to make the maximum possible use of word-of-mouth, viral and Internet marketing, to ensure young adults gain a favorable view of Coca-Cola Zero from people they trust. Aligning these efforts with a credible mass media campaign should help drive adoption from trendsetters to more regular young consumers.
Coca-Cola Zero will also need to be clearly differentiated from the thousands of other carbonated soft drinks on the market - but even this will not be enough. The crucial question over this drink's success is whether it accurately and directly meets young adults' specific need states. Unless Coca-Cola makes a compelling proposition that it does, then Zero risks living up to its name.
The important key in interacting with the consumer was by knowing everything that was wanted by the consumer to fill the consumer's satisfaction. The era of the public's market, together with the change in the condition for the economy as well as the development of technology changed the behavior of the consumer in consuming the thing and or the service. The consumer began to compartmentalize himself became more heterogeneous so as to become the task of the company of knowing the wish and the requirement for the consumer as well as follow up by producing the thing and or the service that could satisfy the requirement and the consumer's wish in accordance with the consumer's appetite.
The existence of the too heterogeneous consumer caused the company to have to group the consumer with identified the market part that was able to be served. Further the company will become more selective in serving the consumer who became the potential market. Most companies chose one or more the available segment afterwards developed the product as well as the marketing strategy and the promotion mix that were drafted to respectively the segment in accordance with their characteristics.
When the company determines how many the segment of the market that will be serving as the potential market, then the marketer must evaluate these segments as well as identified the indicator that became the attraction of the segment as well as the aim of the company and the company's resources. According to Kasali (2004) defined the targeting process was the problem how chose, selected and covered the market.
After segmenting and targeting, then next is process to positioning the product. According to Kotler (2004) positioning was all the efforts to design the product and the make in order to be able to occupy a position that was unique on the consumer's mind where eventually results of the end of positioning was encouraged the creation the proposition the just right value, that became the reason for the consumer to buy.
According to Trout (2004) positioning is the framework concerning how the head of humankind worked in the process of communication. According to Hiebing and Cooper in Rhenald Kasali (1998) defined positioning as the activity to develop the perception of the producer's product in the relative target market towards the competition.
Based on the definition above, positioning is about how the company looked for the belief that was related to the existence creation of a product in the consumer's mind and guided the consumer fully the credibility. Positioning not just persuaded and created the image in the consumer mind, but also about how to stealing consumer's belief. Because in the free trade era like at this time, the consumer could be no longer managed so as they must be guided in order to become the fanatical and loyal consumer.
2. POSITIONING ELEMENTS
Related with the definition positioning that was untangled by Trout (2004), there are five elements that must be paid attention to by the marketer in carrying out the strategy positioning, such as:
1) The consumer’s head is limited
The head of humankind is like a computer memory where each head of humankind had the place for each piece of information that was maintained. However had one difference, the computer must receive any that were placed by us inside. The head is not. The brain refused each kind of new information that did not make sense. The brain only accepted new information that in accordance with proceeding thinking.
2) The head of the consumer hated confuse
Humankind really relied experience compared other species. The complicated information about product often confusing caused the consumer refuse the product. The consumer liked that was simple. They wanted something that will work with simple instruction.
3) The head of the consumer tended hesitant
The Head of humankind tended emotional, irrational. Why did the consumer buy what was bought? Why did the consumer put forward the certain behavior in market? When we asked people, why they bought the certain product, the answer usually inaccurate? That possibly was significant that they actually knew, but reluctantly informed the reason actually.
4) The head of the consumer is not change
Always had a general view in the marketing industry that the product advertisement ought to just generate the interest was bigger compared to the advertisement for established makes? However evidently we actually more were impressed in what was known by us (or that was bought by us), not in what “new”.
5) The Head of the consumer could loosing focus
In the past, most of famous brand were really considered to be great by the consumer. The head, like a camera, had the picture been very sharp about any makes of his favorite. However, together with passing of time, when other brand of products flooded into the market, then the perception that was clear in the head of the consumer began to lose the focus.
3. TO BUILD POSITIONING
Basically, positioning was a promise that must be kept by the company to his customer. The company's capacity to keep their promised was the part that was vital from the strategy positioning because positioning that was exact was the factor that was very important for the success of the product, the make and the company's fate of the end.
According to Kartajaya (2004) there are four criteria to build positioning, such as:
1. Based on the study of customer
Positioning must be perceived positively by the consumer and became their reason to buy. This will happen if positioning that was applied could describe the value to consumer, because positioning could describe the value to the consumer then will become the important determiners for the consumer at the time of decision to buy.
2. Based on the study of capability and the internal strength of the company
Positioning ought to reflect the strength and the competitive superiority of the company. So as to cultivate the credibility in the consumer point of view.
3. Based on the study of competitor
Positioning must unique, so as could easily to differentiate itself from the competitors. The benefit becoming unique is, competitor will difficulty to copy, so the positioning can be remain in the long term.
4. Based on the study of business environment changes
Positioning must be continuous and always adjusted to various changes in the competition, the behavior of the customer, and also the change of social-culture.
4. WAYS OF POSITIONING
Apart from using the attribute as the implement to develop the statement positioning, according to Kasali (1998) had several other methods that could be utilized, that is:
1. Positioning based on the difference product
Marketer could show to his target market the location of the difference of his product against his competitor's product (unique product features). The producer who produced the parity product could follow this method of winning the competition, but this method had the weakness that is the difference that was featured by the producer was easy to be copied by his competitor.
2. Positioning based on the product benefit
The Benefit of the product could be also featured as positioning as long as being regarded as important by the consumer. There were many forms benefit that could be featured like time, the ease, the clarity, honesty, the enjoyment, cheap, the guarantee, et cetera. The benefit could be economical (cheap, natural, in accordance with its quality), physical (durable, good, eye catching) or emotional (related to self image).
3. Positioning based on consumption
In this method the attribute featured by the use of this product. Positioning this method expected the consumer always to remember and use the producer's product at the time of specific times.
4. Positioning based on the category product
Positioning by this way, usually done by new products that emerged in a category of the product.
5. Positioning based on the competitor
In Indonesia the marketer was forbidden to advertise his product by comparing himself to his competitors. In modern advertising, positioning was based on the competitor is the matter that begins to normally everywhere. In America the comparative advertisement was allowed because of being proven could appoint small companies that compared himself with big companies. Whereas in Indonesia, because the direct comparison was banned, the marketer could use the method indirectly.
6. Positioning through imagination
Positioning was an associative relations, to could develop positioning the producer's product could use imaginations like the place, the person, objects, the situation, et cetera for developed associative the consumer of the target would the producer's product.
7. Positioning based on problems
Positioning was carried out for products or new services that were not yet known. The product (goods or services) usually was created to give the solution to the consumer. The problem that was felt in the community or was experienced by the consumer was promoted to the surface, and the products that were offered were positioned to solve this problem. This problem usually is connected with something that was actual, could take the form of the short-term problem that the time very short to be overcome (or the community immediately changed to the problem that was considered more important) or a dynamic or long-term problem.
5. COMPILED OF POSITIONING
When the marketer could identify and sort as well as choose the strategy positioning that will be used then must be carried out by several steps in compiled positioning. According to Kartajaya (2004) several steps that must be carried out in compiled positioning were:
1. Identifying the relevant target segment target
The Step in early of compiled positioning was by understanding well the segment of the market that will become the target market so as positioning that was compiled really exact by the customer perception.
2. Determine consumer frame of reference
After identified the target market, then the further step is decisive the “gender” of category product. For example, the positioning of Starbucks “the world’s finest coffee experience”. Positioning clearly showed how Starbucks determined the "gender” is not as the stall or the coffee restaurant that introduce the delicious of their coffee but rather as the place enjoyed “experience” to enjoy the atmosphere.
3. Formulated “point of differentiation”
Positioning must clearly showed the difference with the competitor. Moreover positioning also must be able to determine the reason why the consumer bought the product.
4. Determined the competitive advantage of the product
The Company also must be able to convince the consumer that this differentiation not only at surface, but really could be enjoyed as something that was different from the competitor.
6. POSITIONING MISTAKES
Philip Kotler in Kasali (1998) mentioned 4 (four) the mistake kind that could happen in positioning. These mistakes were as follows:
1. Under positioning
The product called under positioning if this product did not have the clear position in the consumer mind, so as the consumer regarded it was the same as the competitor's other product in the market.
2. Over positioning
This mistake happened as resulting from marketer too narrow in positioning their product so it could be reduce the interest of the consumer who entered the segment of their market.
3. Confused Positioning
The consumer could experience the hesitation because marketer too many attributes.
4. Doubtful positioning
This positioning is made hesitate because the truth was not supported by adequate proof. The consumer did not believe, because apart from being not supported by strong proof, the consumer had the certain experience towards this make, or marketing mix that was appointed inconsistent with the existence of the product.
Nowadays a trend of shape concerned is very popular globally. Consumer tends to prefer and buying more of healthy product and also low/non calories products. Lifestyle of people changing from eating junk foods to low/non calories products even become a vegetarian. Not only shape concerned but some of a dangerous disease also cause from consuming sweet and high fat foods. Therefore marketers see this opportunity in the market and try to invent any goods that can fulfill the demand of consumers in the market.
Structural market trends cannot be changed through launching Star Products and Brands. But the latter can make indeed make a lot of sense from a financial and marketing point of view, even in mature markets.
Coca-Cola has been struggling for years within its soft drinks division, mainly due to the sharp decline of this market in its core market: The USA. Reason for this has been a shift of preference towards healthier drinks such as mineral water, juices and energetic drinks (sure that energetic drinks are not that healthy, but people perceive them as such). Coca-Cola Co was aware of this trend and has been able to enter successfully into this new market, but also had to do something for its soft drinks.
The solution has come by launching something new and aligned with what the market is asking for: The Zero sub-brand. Before launching it, Coca-cola had its regular Coke + a light one. The first was perceived as unhealthy, while the second was viewed as having a weird taste by many customers that were looking for something else. Solution for this? Coming out with something that had the best of each one: A new version that had the full flavor of the regular one while not having sugar at all.
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