The Big Knit campaign.

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This essay describes the most well-known charity organisation Age UK with the soft drinks company “The Innocent” which launched “A Big Knit” campaign in 2013. The “Big Knit” is a joint campaign between Age UK and innocent drinks to help vulnerable older people. The essay will follow the Kotler and Lee Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) campaign plan in order to show how Age UK achieved its objectives by implementing CSR in their business tactics.

  • Identify points of inter-section between the business and society

According to the ONS (Office for National Statistics), during the winter 2012/2013, Age UK claimed 30,000 excess winter deaths in England and Wales, particularly among people aged over 75+. (Rankin, 2013) Since this shameful and preventable situation, the Age UK charity urged the government to lower energy bills so that elderly could keep their homes warm during winter season. The charity also launched a new campaign called “Spread the Warmth” asking people to help an older person to feel well and warm. A 3 minute commercial video shows some old ladies telling their severe and cold winter survival story; the Age UK representatives help such people by bringing wool clothes, helping to do shopping, fitting radiators and heaters and other home improvements. Their main website also provide donations buttons, volunteering opportunities in order to help elderly not to feel lonely. This commercial advertisement encouraged The Innocent Company to launch the “Big Knit” campaign with the aim to help older people during the cold winter months through befriending visits, emergency cold weather support, warm meals and other vital services. It is interesting to note, that Innocent Drinks Company is famous for its 100% pure fruit juices since 1999. This fact probably was the reason to launch a “Big Knit” campaign together with Age UK charity organisation in order to focus on the same message and reach a better result.

The joint project started with older people from Age Concerns around the UK‚ innocent consumers and Sainsbury’s staff knitting tiny woollen hats to place on the top of innocent smoothie bottles. Hats were knitted by knitting groups with the local Age UKs and knitting groups across the United Kingdom. (source:www.ageuk.org.uk) The smoothies with hats are sold nationally and for every one sold innocent donated 25p to Age UK. In 2012, innocent smoothies with hats were sold in Sainsbury’s, Waitrose, Boots, Tesco, WHSmith and Asda stores. The raised money will go to funding local and national projects to help keep people warm and well in winter.

The Big Knit website also provides a scheme on how to knit a hat and an opportunity to knit a virtual hat online. This campaign allowed people to contribute and be involved in the marketing campaign CSR as well as to create a positive brand image among people of completely different age, job and social class.

  • Measure impacts

Measurability links who saw the advertisement and then what specific action occurred in response (e.g. purchase intension, recall and brand awareness) linked back to marketing communication objectives. (Dahlen et al., 2010)

In 2013 Age UK raised over £244,000 by knitting over 1 million hats. (source:www.ageuk.org.uk) By 2014, the total amount of raised money reached £1.75 million in 10 years’ time. Also, the hat gallery of 2013 on social network Flirck shows almost 6 million knitted hats with the help of thousands of people across the UK. Social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn helped to raise awareness and interest by “Share” and “Follow” buttons. Instagram, Pinterest and Youtube also play an important role in word-of-mouth communication and public relations.

  • Rank & prioritise key issues

The key issues for this campaign are:

–          High mortality rate amongst old people during the winter season in the UK that was the reason for Innocent Drinks and Age UK to join together.

–          Old people are in a desperate need for care and help in order to keep their houses warm.

–          Interest people in helping old people by doing donation in such a creative way (knitting hats) and make them trust this joint campaign.       

  • Establish small number of key initiatives.

    The main key of establishing a small number of key initiatives is that it is something everyone can contribute to, that will advance the organisation. The bigknit.co.uk website provide an online tool where visitors can create their own version of the big knitter – the colour of drink, style of hats and other accessorises. By sharing the masterpiece on Facebook or Twitter, the Innocent Drinks will donate 10p to Age UK. Also, there are knitting patterns and how-to sections showing how to knit hats from beginner to expert level. Some video lessons are also shared on Youtube channel in order to raise awareness and interest among people.

  • Set targets / KPIs

    – to promote awareness and understanding of tough old people lives during severe weather in winter by creating a woolly art installation.
    – to engage people to take care through the act of creating and through the social nature of knitting.
    – to improve the mortality rate of elderly across the UK during winter seasons.

  • Monitor results

Since this campaign started, Innocent has raised more than £1.3 million to help look after older people and four million hats have been knitted. In 2012, the Big Knit raised £115,000 for Age UK.

  • Communicate externally
  1. Engage with key stakeholders
    The Innocent Drinks created a dialogue with its customers and communicate with them directly through the donations, knitting hats techniques, competitions’ winners, involved them in social media life by sharing and following buttons. All this helped to have a positive effect on the brand.
  2. Listen
    If the organisation has a dialogue with their customers, that means they listen to each other. Innocent listens to its customers and gives them opportunity to choose the design of hats with all the needed information and knitting techniques. Age UK . in turn, listen to their elderly people and has a clear mission to make their life easier and warm.
  3. To be part of corporate identity and be part of the corporate brand
    Innocent always has been promoting healthy lifestyle and 100% pure juices to their buyers. The joint campaign with Age UK charity organisation did not change the overall vision and beliefs of the Innocent Drinks. They both made their brands stronger, widen their audience range and became popular in social media.

References

[Anon]. ([n.d]). Social Media and Charities – The Innocent Big Knit. Available: http://www.bakedmarketing.com/site/social-media-and-charities-the-innocent-big-knit/. Last accessed 24th Apr 2014.

Dahlen,M et al. (2010). Marketing Communications: A brand narrative approach. Chichester: John Wiley & Sons Ltd. p. 474.

Rankin, J et al.. (2013). Winter deaths rose by almost a third in 2012-13. Available at: http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2013/nov/26/winter-deaths-rose-third [Last accessed 23rd Apr 2014.]

 

 

 

Operations Management: Lean management. A wedding party at the Green Hotel.

1.0 Introduction
The report provides a literature review with a thorough research about the philosophy of the lean management and its common concepts by providing a number of well-known companies’ examples. It also discusses and analyses how the Green Hotel organization implements the concepts within a lean management system in practice by organising a wedding occasion. Some calculations and other appendixes are provided in order to determine the extra resources and the scheduling of the work.

2.0 The Philosophy of Lean Management
Lean management system is one of the most innovative and popular management techniques, which many firms are using today. According to Plenert (2007), lean is a systematic approach that focuses the entire enterprise on continuously improving quality, cost, delivery, and safety by seeking to eliminate waste, create flow, and increase the velocity of the system’s ability to meet customer demand. It also means that the flow of products or services always delivers exactly what customers want, in exact quantities and exactly when needed at the lowest possible price.
The basic concepts of lean management are: value stream mapping, 5S’s, continuous improvement, flow, just-in-time (JIT), total quality management (TQM), waste minimisation and, in some applications, 6 sigma methodology. Pascal (2007) states that value stream mapping is an invaluable tool that helps organisations to grasp the current condition and identify improvement opportunities. In other words, it is a technique for dramatically representing a process, to aid critical analysis of the process by a team of knowledgeable people. According to Bicheno (2009) the main purpose of mapping is to design the future. This is done by establishing priorities for lean implementation, short and medium term. It is also a great tool for ideas generation in general. 5S is perhaps the most popular tool in lean. The typical Japanese 5Ss are generally translated into sort, simplify, scan, standardise and Sustain steps. The objectives of a 5S are to reduce waste and variation as well as to improve productivity. By implementing 5S concept, places are clean and clear, highly motivated employees are working according to an order without any stress or pressure. Chambers and Johnston et al (2009) argue that continuous improvement adopts an approach to improving performance that assumes a never-ending series of small incremental improvement steps. Goetsch (2013) agrees that continual improvement seeks to eliminate waste in all forms, improve quality of products or services, and improve customer reaction- and do all of this while at the same time reducing costs. With JIT concept, a business holds no stock and instead relies upon deliveries of raw materials and other resources to arrive exactly when they are needed. (BBC, 2014) Dell Inc. successfully applied JIM principles in order to be able to provide an exceptionally short lead times to their customers with quickly assembly and shipping. Many principles of flow are linked with JIT. According to Goetsch (2013) flow production means production that runs easily and steadily without disruption. Boddy (2014) describes TQM as a philosophy of management that is driven by customer needs and expectations and focuses on continually improving work processes. This concept also includes every person in organisation who develop the idea of continuous and incremental improvement. Six sigma also plays a significant role in the overall process. It is a strategy within the context of total quality that moves the target to a far higher level of quality than organisations have succeed in the past. The objective of lean six sigma is to make the organisation better in its routine work and processes, its products or services, and its business outcomes.
It is believed that the most significant part of the lean philosophy is its focus on the elimination of all forms of waste which does not add value. According to Slack et al. (2011) there are seven types of waste: over-production, waiting time, transport, process, inventory, motion and defectives. Bicheno et al. (2009) believe that the waste of overproduction is the most serious of all the wastes because it is the source of many issues and other wastes. Overproduction is all about producing more than needed by the next process in any operation. For instance, to print documents or process items before they are required by the next person in the process. The waste of waiting is probably the second most important waste. It usually appears due to broken machinery, lack of skilled staff and discipline or inefficient planning. For example, in a factory business, any time that an item is seen to be not moving is a sign of waste. Transporting waste cannot be fully eliminated but it is also a waste that should be reduced over time. This particularly includes pointless transfers or distance travelled by materials, information or people. Movement or process itself may be a source of waste as moving customers or products around the operation often does not add value. (Slack et al, 2011) The waste of unnecessary inventory (such as raw materials, work in progress and end items) also exists. Next in importance is the waste of unnecessary motions which refer to both human and layout. For instance, an operation may look busy but sometimes no value is being added by the work. The waste of defects also cost money, for example, Toyota philosophy is that a defect should be regarded as a challenge rather than something to be tradeoff against what is ultimately poor management.
Nowadays, many companies such as Nike, Intel, Ford, Toyota, Textron, Caterpillar Inc. and many others use lean management principles. For example, Nike worked with Fair Labor Association in order to create performance indicators and maintainable sourcing and launched the Sustainable Apparel Coalition with the US Environmental Protection Agency and other manufacturers, and in the process saved money on energy and waste materials. (Wilkes, 2013) Intel, the world’s largest computer chip maker company, had to spend 14 weeks to introduce a new chip to the factory, however, after using lean principles it takes only 10 days. The US Caterpillar machinery manufacturer admitted that pace is a critical characteristic of lean integration, and if project takes too long to complete, the business will fail. In order to be successful, projects must be quickly implemented.
The main benefit of the lean management system is that the work which is under execution is reduced. Lean management system increases the production level to a higher level. It also focuses on customer satisfaction. E.g. when the products or services are good quality and delivered on time, the company receives a positive feedback from the client. This feedback improves the sales of the product and also builds a strong trust relationship and a sense of need between the company and its customers. Leadership is an important part of lean management system; leadership helps to increase income of the company. A well-qualified and skilled professional who manages the company can provide a better development to the business. The lean management system is especially effective and productive when a task is performed by a group of members rather than individually. It is also useful for both small and large scale industry.

 3.0 Application of concepts
The successful implementation of lean management philosophy to any organisation requires a thorough analysis and understanding of the current situation and possible valuable outcome. There are three concepts which are the most likely to be implemented in hospitality industry, particularly for the Green Hotel Company: value stream mapping, 5S and TQM.
Value stream mapping (VSM), the Japanese concept of Kaizen, is a tool that uses symbols to describe a value stream. Good mapping practice has four maps: current state, future state, ideal state, and action plan. It provides an opportunity to visualise a horizontal process view through organisational and functional structures in order to form a better understanding of the true value of each activity. (Aitken, 2014) One of the main advantage of VSM is that it provides a very clear focus to where the lean tools must be applied and ensures that the end to end process is optimised. Danaher Corporation have been using VSM as a tool in order to focus on activities in the pursuit of a lean organisation over the 5 years. It is not uncommon for processes with lead times in excess of 20 days to be completely restructured to less than 5 days over a period of 3-6 months, in addition to major decreases in inventory and batch sizes. (Source: http://www.oeeuk.com) VSM can help the Green Hotel organisation to guide creative thinking around process redesign and improvement options. For instance, the process of cleaning a hotel room can be easily analysed and planned with the help of value stream mapping. By implementing the VSM, the organisation can easily detect waste in a business process. Having a visual image may help the Green Hotel business to see the story of how the product or service makes its way to customers’ hands.
The 5S process is one of the most central and widely applied component of lean management. Five-S is considered as essential to continual improvement. (Goetsch, 2013) It is a method of doing things that eliminates waste and reduces faults, defects, and other damages. Benefits to the business from using the 5S methodology include improving quality, lowering costs, promoting security, building buyer confidence, increasing factory up-time, and lowering repair prices. A proper sortation of stock equipment such as spare tools, documentation and other items can help the hotel to identify the useless things and dispose it in order to save time searching around the work area. The useful items must be stored safe and kept in its place so that they are visible and immediately available to the workforce. This storage manner can comfort the hotel’s staff to access the needed equipment (extra chairs, bed clothes, detergents) by having it easily at hand every time it is needed. All of these lead to a cleaning work area around as the act of keeping everything clean becomes a form of inspection of machines, tools and environmental conditions. Standardize and sustain state for selecting the best practice and make sure that rules are followed and functioning well in organisation. The implementation of 5S can make hotel employees feel better about their work environment as well as improve productivity and reduce possible waste.
It is believed that TQM is a key concept of lean management and plays an essential role in improving the quality of products and services based on customers’ feedback. The Four Season Hotel is a good example of successfully implementing TQM methodology. Their golden rule is all about treating their guests with politeness and intelligence. They focus on listening carefully to the guests and meeting their expectations and needs. All Four Seasons hotels use a ‘guest history system’ to track guests’ preferences in order to prevent possible mistakes in the future. (Slack, N & Chambers, S; 2009) Ryanair, on the other hand, does not offer luxury service as they position themselves as a low-cost airline. Both companies describe quality as ‘getting the service you expect, given what you are paying’ by seeing things from a customer’s standpoint. The implementation of TQM methodology to the Green Hotel organisation can help to raise profitability, improve and increase customer satisfaction/loyalty, enhance market image as well as straighten competitive position. TQM covers all parts of the organisation and includes every person in the organisation as well as across the supply chain; it has clear systems and procedures to support quality and developing the idea of continuous improvement, implemented by teams; also, it tracks all costs affecting quality, especially those of failures and of getting things right first time. (Boddy, 2014)

4.0 Challenge Plan
This section describes the Green Hotel and provides a solution to the problem and a plan for running a wedding party for 120 guests in 8 weeks’ time. Some calculations, extra resources and scheduling of entertainment activities are analysed and prepared in clear details. Boddy (2014) states that planning sets out the overall direction of work which includes forecasting future trends, assessing resources and developing performance objectives.
It is obvious that the wedding party is usually celebrated on Friday-Sunday week days. According to the information produced, the average bedroom occupancy is 60% Friday to Sunday what makes it easy to locate 120 guests in 30 bedrooms hotel:

30 bedrooms – 100%
x bedrooms – 60%
30*60/100=18 (bedrooms) – It means that 60% of occupancy takes 18 bedrooms.

30 bedrooms – 100%
12 bedrooms – x %
12*100/30=40 – It means that the rest 12 bedrooms (out of 30) takes 40%.

Besides, most rooms are refundable if someone cancel it 48h ahead of check-in process.
All produce is sourced from suppliers within a 50 miles area. This supports their “Green ambitions” and helps to minimise their carbon footprint. Delivering smaller quantities more frequently can reduce inventory levels and shorten lead times. It will take approximately 2 hours for a vehicle driving 50mph in both ways, stuff loading may take around 1.5-2 hours as well as unloading:

2+ (2*2) =6 (hours) – All the stuff delivery takes maximum 6 hours in a day.

According to the fact that the busiest days are Fridays-Sundays, it is more advisable to do any delivery processes on Mondays-Thursdays as it is more convenient for the working staff to meet their time management and set priorities correctly. However, food must be delivered as close to the wedding party day so that it will stay fresh.

The main resources list includes:
Food and Beverages (hot and cold) (480 portions of dishes- three course lunch & buffet, 108 alcoholic bottles for cocktails and etc., 240 bottles of soft drinks)
Extra furniture (chairs x 120, tables x 30, outdoor seats x 10)
Extra kitchen dishes and table clothes (plates x 120, glasses x 290, knives & forks x 290, napkins etc.)
Extra bedclothes x 120
Large TV screens x 2
Music and sound equipment (microphones, loudspeakers) x 1 set
Other (fireworks, flowers, grill etc.) x quantity by request
The following graph below illustrates the delivery dates during the 8 weeks’ time.

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Every wedding occasion requires a variety of entertainments for adult and their children. The Green Hotel can provide an outdoor ceremony for newlyweds and their guests as well as an outside party with different snacks, beverages and buffet facilities. There is a need to hire more bartenders and runners who can serve food and cocktails as well as do cleaning at night. Another activity for adults is a large TV screen with photo collage showing the bride’s and groom’s life. Different musicians, DJs or showgirls may cover the background and make the event especially memorable and lively. The Green Hotel also provides a large dance floor with disco ball and other decorations. Activities for children are also included, for example, a game room and an outdoor swings. Any other entertainments or decorations facilities can be booked outside of the Green Hotel. The graph below shows the supposed entertainments timescale during the wedding event.

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ISO 9000’s operating principle (Plan-Do-Check-Act) will help to guarantee that the products or services provided by organisations are regularly fit for the intended purposes. Plan-Do-Check-Ant cycle result in continual improvement for products/services, processes and systems of processes. (Goetsch, 2013) By establishing objectives and developing the future plans, and putting it into action, it is easier to measure the result of action or were the objectives met? It will help to learn from the results and make any necessary changes to the plan and repeat the cycle. The implementation ISO 9000 to the Green Hotel’s wedding occasion will help to set priorities and improve client satisfaction as well as achieve continual improvement of organisational performance and competitiveness. The cycle below illustrates the implementation of ISO 9000 to the wedding party at the Green Hotel.

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5.0 Conclusion

The main aim of the lean system is to eliminate waste so as to improve productivity – the only effective strategy under the new economics. Lean activities are interrelated and mutually supportive and are informed by the same way of thinking. The positive goals of lean production include creating flow so that the customer can pull and involving the workers in improvement activities. (Pascal, 2007) This report also produced a solution to a planning problem at the Green Hotel by providing a list of needed resources and its quantities, schedule of delivery dates and wedding entertainment activities.

6.0 References

Aitken, A. (2014). Lean: Concepts and Realities. Available: http://www.lanner.com/en/pdf/lean_and_lanner.pdf.%5B Last accessed 14th Apr 2014.]

BBC. (2014). Business studies: Just in Time. Available: http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/gcsebitesize/business/production/organisingproductionrev3.shtml.%5B Last accessed 10th Apr 2014.]

Boddy, D (2014). Management Production. 6th ed. London: Pearson Education Ltd. p.656,586, 20

Bicheno, J & Holweg, M (2009). The Lean Toolbox: The Essential Guide to Lean Transformation. 4th ed. Buckingham: PICSIE Books. p.22-24

Chambers,S & Johnston,R et al (2009). Operations and Process Management: Principles and Practice for Strategic Impact. 2nd ed. Essex: Pearson Education Ltd. p.440,386-387

Goetsch,D & Davis,S (2013). Quality Management for Organisational Excellence. 7th ed. New Jersey: Pearson Education. p.396-397,38,266,233

Oeeuk. (2012). Value Stream Mapping. Available: http://www.oeeuk.com/five-min-briefing/value-stream-mapping/#success.%5B Last accessed 14th Apr 2014.]

Pascal, D (2007). Lean Production. 2nd ed. New York: Productivity Press. p.25-26,87

Plenet, G (2007). Reinventing Lean: introducing lean management into the supply chain. Oxford: Elsevier. p.146

Slack, N & Lewis, M (2011). Operations Strategy. 3rd ed. Essex: Pearson Education. p.91,92

Slack, N et al. (2011). Essentials of Operations Management. London: Pearson Education. p.89

Wilkes, J. (2013). Top Ten Lean Manufacturers. Available: http://www.manufacturingdigital.com/top_ten/the-top-ten-lean-manufacturers. [Last accessed 8th Apr 2014.]

 

Northampton University. Advertising students.

Northampton University. Advertising students.

Here we are : Jane, Georgina, Alyona, Joshua, Josh, Lara, Nicolle, Shayo and Tarek.
We are second year students doing BA Advertising course at Northampton university.
Today, we are working on our video project about our course in order to attract new students to study this course at the University of Northampton.
Please follow my blog and see our promotional video by the end of March, 2014.

Celebrity PR

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Celebrity PR has acquired a high profile and has become a popular starting point for those thinking about PR career. Celebrities now play a central role  in contemporary culture and a large and seemingly growing proportion of media content is devoted to their activities. The lion’s share of this is supplied by the PR industry. Celebrity PR crosses over into other areas of PR partly because the original reason for a celebrity’s fame often involves a sector covered by specialist PR-for example, music, enterntainment, sport, fashion or food. In addition, one of the most typical ways by which PR people seek to secure publicity for products is to win celebrity endorsment together with celebrity involvement in associated PR activity. Too often this is a knee-jerk response to a PR problem:celebrities have to be carefully chosen and do not guarantee success.
As with other specialisms, celebrities can employ in-house PR people and employ PR agencies-often smaler firms which specialise in such work and perhaps related areas of specialist PR. Indeed when the footballer David Beckham faced allegations of an extra-marital affair in 2004 it emerged that no fewer than three PR firms were responsible for his and his wife Victoria’s image, while the allegations concerned a “PR girl” who worked for another company which they had allegedly ceased to use. Much of the discussion of the case concerned the implications for the Beckhams’ large range of product endorsements.
However, many large PR agencies are reluctant to work for celebrities. There are two main reasons. First, even if the individual celebrity is able to pay the substantial fees which suck firms demand, they are often reluctant to do so.: it involves parting with money from their personal earnings which feels more painful than it does for a  large company which is accustomed to paying large amounts for marketing services. Second, large PR firms are accustomed to dealing with clients which are structured, disciplined organisations which attempt to behave in logical and fairly predictable ways. Celebrities are individuals who have often achieved fame or even notoriety precisely because of their idiosyncratic behaviour and turbulent lives. If a new product causes problems it can be altered or dropped but the scope for repackaging an individual personality is much more limited. If an employee of a corporate client steps out of the line they can be disciplined or sacked. If a member of a celebrity’s family causes problems they cannot readily be dealt with in the same way. All of this means that celebrity PR and the handling of personalities it entails often requires a different approach and temperament.

A niche area of PR- although its exact status is disputed-has emerged in response to the growing numbers of ‘wannabe’ celebrities. Such people are seldom in a position to pay up-front for PR but often their initial claim to fame is an association with one or more existing celebrities-most typically a sexual liaison. Whereas once upon a time they might have approached the media directly, increasingly they can choose to do so via PR people who are experienced in media handling and can negotiate a fee for the story and take a percentage of themselves. Although relatively few PR people make their living in this way it is a high-profile activity and is undoubtedly responsible for a significant proportion of media content. Many other PR people seek to distance themselves from such work, seeing it as distasteful. Its practitioners are often described as publicists, although that term has a wider meaning.

While the rights and wrongs remain a matter of personal judgement, what is true is that the modus operandi of such people is significantly different from conventional PR. Normally PR people are paid by their clients or employers for media handling. In this case the ‘PR’ people are more akin to an entertainment industry agent in that they receive a percentage of their clients’ fee, although they may also offer advice on other matters.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/max-clifford-in-court-celebrity-pr-used-connections-to-bully-and-manipulate-women-court-hears-9173724.html

The New 2014 Campaign for Toyota Company. Assignment-Report.

1.0   Introduction

The purpose of this report is to demonstrate and critically analyse how my company “PR 4 U” has applied an innovative approach to a world’s well known Toyota Company, particularly Supra 2014 sport model, by launching new plastic products glowing in the dark.

The campaign’s overall objective is to provide a full safety for drivers while driving cars at nights and the ability to express the uniqueness and individuality.

Public relations is all about strategic communication process which creates positive and valuable relationships between organisations and their publics. This report covers a variety of different tactics, methods and strategies which help PR initiatives to achieve a success in Toyota new campaign.

 

2.0   History of brand

Toyota originally came from Japanese industry and was invented by Sakichi Toyoda. In 1924, he presented Toyoda Model G Automatic Loom which patent was sold to a British Company in 1929. By the end of 1975, Toyota sold over one million vehicle and surpassed Volkswagen to become number one import brand in the United States. In August 1982, the Celica Supra model became available in the European market for the first time, and with supply to the UK limited to just 100 cars per month it benefited from an additional air of exclusiveness. The new Celica was launched in 1999 and the design had radically changed. Toyota designed the Supra model to fill the upper end of the sporty subcompact market. During its 20-year history the Supra went through four generations, plus a special 15th anniversary edition. (Source: http://www.Toyota.com)

 

3.0 Evaluation of current market

Toyota is trying to develop cars that meet the needs and expectations of their customers while at the same time achieving an ideal balance between consideration for the environment, safety, drivability, comfort and reliability. Toyotas are not particularly exciting or rugged but consumers regard them as sincere and competent. J.D.Power, an organisation that surveys car owners to evaluate levels of satisfaction, annually reports that Toyota is at or near the top of satisfaction ratings. This, of course, is due to the brand’s overall success and reliability. (Shimp, 2007) The Company’s automobile segment is engaged in the design, manufacture and sale of car products, including sedans, minivans, sport-utility vehicles ,2BOX cars and trucks, as well as the related car parts and accessories. According to “The Guardian” newspaper’s article, Toyota Company sold 9.7m cars and trucks worldwide in 2012, and it is still growing. Toyota kept its crown as the world’s best-selling auto maker for two years in a row in 2013, beating competitors like General Motors and Volkswagen after having sold 9.9m vehicles together with group companies Daihatsu and Hino Motors. However, Toyota Motor claimed that it would stop producing engines and cars in Australia by the end of 2017 due to the decreased sales rates by nearly half in the past decade. (NY Times, 2014) In the United Kingdom, the production has made Toyota a key player in the nation’s manufacturing business. In 2013, Toyota GB sold 84,563 vehicles which is up 14, 9%. (Hubbard, 2014) Toyota is planning to sell around 10.32m vehicles globally in 2014. (The guardian, 2014)

4.0  The Campaign

4.1  The new product description

The main idea of this new campaign is to produce a wide range of different plastic accessorises glowing in the dark such as number frame plates, bolts, side frames, caps on the nipple and arch liners. To start with, a number frame plate has a very useful and unusual feature, it is glowing in the dark without electricity, bulbs or LEDs. The principle is that during the day, the material from which the frame is made, collects daylight and then send accumulated lumens as a bright glow. Phosphorus, a non-metallic chemical element, has an ability to glow in the dark and is widely used in medicine, explosives, fireworks and toothpaste. While driving a car, the frame glows even more brightly due to the energy generated by friction with the air. Even with the fully dead battery, the car will be noticeable on unlit roads at night. Basically, the colours of plates are white or translucent during the daylight but it is possible to produce any frame colour. In this case, the brightness level is lower than the classic version. It is interesting to note that the brightest glow in the dark is green colour. The arch liners glowing in the dark will decorate any vehicle making in notable especially on sport cars like Toyota Supra. Also, the new phosphorescent caps for nipples will create a beautiful green halo around the wheels when driving more than 30 mph. Nowadays, there is no need to spend much money on painting the whole wheel with the professional glowing dye for automobiles.

 4.2  The SMART objectives

For objectives to be effective they should meet the criteria of being Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-bound which forms the acronym SMART. (Gordon, 2011) The SMART framework will help to identify what is needed to successfully implement new products for the Toyota brand and meet the deadlines on time.

 

  • Specific

By May 1, 2014, implement the new outside phosphorus-glowing car parts for the Toyota brand market and to raise awareness amongst age group of 22-35 middle and high income drivers by using clear marketing and PR structure. Also, to update the http://www.toyota.com web site stock with new accessorises and start communication with the audience in order to promote the “glowing” campaign and attract new potential customers to the Toyota market.

  • Measurable

The measurable objective in this campaign is to reach a high volume of noticeability. This includes five days a week advertisements in famous national newspapers such as “The Telegraph”, “The Guardian” and “The Times” which have millions of readers in the UK, also, in well-known auto journals and magazines, for example “Auto express” and “Car magazine”, three days a week radio ads will help to reach the audience’s ears while driving a car and some e-blogs publications will grab the attention of people who spend much time on the internet. Social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram have a special influence on publics and their perception of the brand. For example, in 2013, Facebook reached 1.19 billion monthly active users. (Source: The Next Web, 2013)

  • Achievable

The overall business objective is to make the Toyota the best-selling car in the UK market with the help of a new glowing products, and to help achieve that the PR objectives are to get all the key monitoring journalists and bloggers to write a review of the Toyota sports car event show. The aim is to achieve at least 10,000 online readers and followers as well as 100,000 sales in the first 10 months.

 

  • Realistic

With the £1.5 million budget and a clear strategic business plan, the new innovative approach is more than realistic to implement. The major amount of the budget is going to be spend on the development of glowing car parts and its dyeing; around 1/3 of the rest budget is for the Toyota sports car open air race show which also includes rent fee, laser and music demonstration, catering facilities, glowing products exhibition and other equipment. Other amount of money is intended for advertising in press and TV channels, event leaflets, for reporters, journalists and photographers. The entrance fee to an event will be £5 per person; the money will go for charity organisations like “Save the Children” and “The Lullaby Trust” located in London.

  • Time-bound

The product development and all the organisational and promotional goals must be completed by May 1, 2014. The event will be held on 3nd May till 5th May which is Bank Holiday in the United Kingdom. The desired success is predicted within 6 months after the event days.

 

4.3  Target Audience

Knowledge of audience characteristics such as beliefs, attitudes, concerns, and lifestyles is an essential part of persuasion. It helps the communicator tailor messages that are salient, answer a felt need, and provide a logical course of action. (Wilcox, 2011)  The “glowing” campaign is mainly aimed at females and males drivers of age around 22-35. The intended target audience for these products are middle- and high-income people who take care of their cars and are more likely to try these new glowing accessorises. People in this age range tend to be graduated students with stable salary and people with quite high income who can afford such a “glowing” and unique privilege. Audience profiling also depends on hobbies/interests and social values. This campaign expects to see sports and travel lovers, who treat their cars as a family member or the best friend. The selection of target segments is a critical step toward effective and efficient marketing communication. (Shimp, 2007)

5.0  Tactics and Promotional tools

  • Advertising

Printed words can be kept indefinitely and can be reread. Messages delivered in that form through newspapers, magazines, and journals are fundamental elements in public relations work. (Wilcox, 2001) The new campaign advertisements are to appear in famous local newspapers and car journals. Magazines are also noted for their long life as kept around the home, salons, shops and offices for weeks. Magazines and journals provide both mass audience and highly selective vehicles to choose from. Newspapers have the value of natural timeliness and immediacy so important to achieving consumer response. (Parente, 2006) The new campaign also requires a television advertising. Television has the strongest emotional influence of all media. A 30 sec commercial video will be broadcasted on Eurosport, BBC, and ITV channels on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays as on these days people are more likely to spend their after-work-time watching TV. The billboards ads will be placed on the roads and streets. Eye-catching impact is the goal as the duration of viewing is short. (Appendix 4) The event leaflets will include the programme name, date and venue as well as entrance fee.

  • The internet and social networking

The Internet is an essential element of many people’s lives. The online media are usually used as a supplemental method of reaching a generally well-educated, relatively affluent audience interested in new ideas and fresh approaches.(Wilcox,2001) Firstly, online advertising must be on http://www.toyota.com website with the online shopping tool. Display or banner ads can also be publicised in automobiles online magazines or e-blogs. Secondly, the social networks greatly excite marketing and PR people as they are made up of defined communities of people with some shared interests. (Morris, 2012) The social network sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram allows target audience to share photos and information with their friends and connect to the new people with the same interests or hobbies. This is the best way for Toyota to receive a direct feedback from customers about their experience or thoughts about glowing car parts. In addition, web sites can expand a relationship between a company and the customer on a one-to-one basis.

  • Promotional products

Promotional products, such as T-shirts, automobile sun protectors, key tags, calendars, iPhone cases and other stuff with company’s logo can help further the Toyota brand’s image if it is used strategically. All these products should appear during the event days. The visitors and intended target audience who like and drive Toyota automobiles will definitely purchase some of these products for themselves or their friends.

  • E-Commerce

Shopping online has become a reality and a very popular B2B and B2C sales. The http://www.toyota.co.uk can provide online shopping tool which includes reservation, delivery and collection at your nearest Toyota salon. The convenience in implementing such a tool is that many car buyers shop online for information before they go to a dealership. (Parente, 2006) The items stock list will make the future customer aware about availability of glowing plate frames or arch liners, prices and other description can easily be accessed and understood by any client. The payment method will be through PayPal, Credit cards and Bank cheques.

6.0  Launch Event

Event hospitality is often seen as a part of the public relations’ information dissemination process. (Baines, 2004) The Toyota Sports Car Show will take place on Good Wood Motor Circuit in London on 3rd, 4th and 5th of May, 2014. The objective of the event is to raise awareness about glowing car accessorises among the target audience and to reach a high number of publications in press and word-of-mouth communications. Apart from the car show, the event will also include laser performance from Definitive Company, catering facilities and exhibition stand where visitors can make a professional photograph with races and body-art females. The massive decorations will greet the visitors and will show the directions to parking places. The money raised for the entrance (£5 per person) will be donated to charity organisations “Save the Children” and “The Lullaby Trust” in London. Photographers and journalists of different newspapers and TV channels are invited and welcomed to the event. The press will have special VIP seats in order to take the best photographs of the car race show. Some interviewing places will be provided for them so that the light and sound will match the high standard format. Lots of hospitality tents will meet potential clients with different snacks, hot food and drinks as well as entertain them of the Toyota’s promotional products.

The third day of the event will be announced as a public day where people can still have a look at the Toyota sports cars exhibition stand and glowing accessorises, enjoy BBQ and other catering food, different businesses companies can also come along to the exhibition and have a talk about future partnership or sponsorship with Toyota, the press can take interviews of top executives, managers, media gatekeepers and other influential persons in the industry. All the participants of various Toyota associations and clubs are welcomed to demonstration their sport cars and drift on the run. The image that the event portrays will have a direct effect on how visitors see the organisation regardless of the reality.

7.0  Media Timing/Scheduling

Timing is all about scheduling; decisions need to be made concerning when the ads appear to the publics, and the way these ads are scheduled over time. Timing is an important element of media strategy because when someone is exposed can affect that person’s receptiveness to the advertising message. (Parente, 2006) The Appendix 9 shows the frequency and time of using different media tools in order to achieve a high noticeability and raise awareness among target audiences. It is always important to integrate the marketing communication recommendations with the advertising plan so that the target audience gets a consistent message and “feel” from every contact it has with promotional activities. (Parente, 2006)

8.0 Conclusion

In conclusion, the new campaign for Toyota will definitely grab the attention of customers by its uniqueness and safety which phosphorus-glowing accessorises provide. Different tactics and promotional tools like advertising, social network and internet-commerce, PR, the event launch and word of mouth communication create a clear message for this campaign in order to meet all the SMART objectives.

My Company “PR 4 U” suggests this new campaign with a clear PR strategic plan for Toyota Company. Implementation of a public relations plan uses many different tactics applied in creative ways.

“PR is extremely important, and being able to use it in the right way means everything. You have to market your success.” – Lee Haney, bodybuilder and former Mr Olympia.

 

9.0 References

Baines, P et al. (2004). Public Relations: Contemporary issues and techniques. Oxford: Newgen Imaging System Ltd. p.199

Gordon, A.E. (2011). Public Relations. Oxford: Oxford University Press Inc.. p.176.

Hubbard, C.J. (2013). UK car sales 2012 winners and losers. Available: http://cars.uk.msn.com/features/uk-car-sales-2012-winners-and-losers?page=4. Last accessed 17th Feb 2014.

Morris, T et al (2012). PR Today: The authoritative guide to PR. London: Palgrave Macmillan Publishers Ltd. p.151

NY Times by Reuters. (2014). Toyota to Stop Making Cars in Australia. Available: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/11/business/international/toyota-to-stop-making-cars-in-australia.html?ref=toyotamotorcorporation&_r=0. Last accessed 17th Feb 2014.

Parente, D.E (2006). Advertising Campaign Strategy. 4th ed. Mason USA: Thomson Higher Education. p.191,225,278

Protalinski, E. (2013).The Next Web. Facebook passes 1.19 billion monthly active users, 874 million mobile users, and 728 million daily users . Available: http://thenextweb.com/facebook/2013/10/30/facebook-passes-1-19-billion-monthly-active-users-874-million-mobile-users-728-million-daily-users/#!utbb2. Last accessed 5th Feb 2014.

The Guardian . (2013). Toyota reclaims position as world’s biggest carmaker. Available: http://www.theguardian.com/business/2013/jan/15/toyota-world-no-1-carmaker. Last accessed 8th Feb 2014.

The Guardian. (2014). Toyota forecasts record annual profit as yen falls and Japan sales rise. Available: http://www.theguardian.com/business/2014/feb/04/toyota-record-profit-yen-japan-sales. Last accessed 8th Feb 2014.

Toyota Com. (2012). Product History:Celica. Available: http://www.toyota.com/about/our_business/our_history/product_history/pdf/celica.pdf. Last accessed 15th Feb 2014.

Shimp, A (2007). Intedgrated Marketing Communications in Advertising and Promotion. 7th ed. Mason USA: Thomson Higher Education . p.18, 40.

Wilcox,D et al (2001). Essentials of Public Relations. US: Addison-Wesley Educational Publishers Inc.. p.184,202,204