National Trust is a non-governmental organization that engages in activities of preserving special places. It has a membership of over 4 million members and welcomes an average of 19 million visitors annually to view its properties and the special places. It has a record of over 350000 houses, 250000 hectares of lands that include gardens, coastlines, natural reserves, island, pubs villages and goldmines. (The Times 100)
National trust is managed by a small group of trustees; therefore it is independent form government influence. To stick to its objective and mission to serve the society, the organization obtains its funds from donors, membership subscriptions, legacies and revenue raised from its investments in catering shops. This restricts them from the goal of profit maximization and thus relies on surplus to sustain the growth and development of the organization. (The Times 100)
The organization is guided by its mission ‘for, ever for everyone’ which attracts members form all ages with varied tastes and preferences. The organization has featured in all parts of the United Kingdom. In its future strategic plan, it intends to increase its membership by 25% that will enable them address local challenges swiftly with little challenge. This strategy is in line with its mission statement to accommodate everyone without discrimination.
SWOT analysis involves strengths, weaknesses, threats and opportunities of an organization or a company. It evaluates the viability of approaches adopted by any organization in achieving its objectives. (Erhardt and Joshi, 2003).
The organization is a not-for-profit organization, hence, is not entitled to profit.instead, it sustains its operations through the surplus amount. To supplement revenue from membership fees and loyalties, the organization engages donors to boost their cash reserve. This is a strategic approach since membership revenue cannot cater for all expenses. In its plan to increase capital, it intends to increase its members by 25%
National trust markets its services and products through physical and virtual platforms. Use of internet and information gadgets is an essential approach to tap a wider audience and save on cost. Pursuant to the rules of marketing, the organization uses animations on its websites to captivate people of all ages.
Management and personnel
The organization is divided into several departments to enhance the effectiveness at work. Departments have been created to undertake specialized activity. Each department is accountable to its own flaws thus enhancing accountability.
The organization has upheld a cost-effective method of advertising its products and services through the internet. Information is posted on blogs and major websites to capture a large audience. Besides, the organization publishes their work on weekly magazines or television. Internet advertisement cannot be accessed by every audience; therefore there is the need to use alternative avenues such as newspapers, radio and television. In addition, National trust launched an application on smart phones where youths can access the organization’s handbook at ease.
Use of social media
National trust has embraced social network as a platform to advertise its products and services. This has facilitated passage of information to a wider audience at the same time and minimum cost. For instance, use of twitter and facebook has enabled interested parties to converse with the management and submit their ideas, compliments or sentiments. Moreover, guest articles published on blogs expose activities carried out by National trust to members and prospective guests. (Lausanne, 2010)
Every organization is susceptible to weakness that hinders its development pace. Such weak areas may deter an organization from progressing. One of major weaknesses is financial constraint. Despite a large membership, the revenue collected cannot cater for its operational costs. This may risk the organization since not all potential donors are willing to contribute funds while others may indefinitely terminate their contribution .Thus, the organization may plunge into insolvency.
National organization has an opportunity to venture in other markets beyond the borders of UK. This is influenced by the social platform that captures a large audience simultaneously. This will increase its membership kitty and create opportunities for other serene reservations for its members and visitors.
Another opportunity is little competition. This creates an enabling environment for the organization to market and brainwash people with their products before the market is infiltrated.
Internet platform has been invaded by fraudulent individuals whose intention is tear down the reputation of successful organizations by hacking into their websites and posting malicious remarks. Such is the risk likely to invade national trusts, which use social network for advertising their products and services. Appropriate measures such as coding a highly sensitive password are necessary to avert any eventuality that may befall its clients and potential customers.
Competition from rivals
National Trust management should upgrade their services to avoid extinction by imminent competitions who may adopt their strategy. Several organizations have adopted a strategy and such is a threat to the future of the organization.
Besides seeking funds from donors, the organization should seek alternatives to cushion itself
Inflation and advertisement costs
Capitalize on opportunities
The organization should assess the available opportunities to boost its market dominance. For instance, the management should strengthen its market base before other potential investors venture into the market
The organization should resolve its weak areas and convert them into strengths .For instance, the organization could invest its surplus in commercial projects to supplement the revenue collected
Protect the organization against imminent threats
Invasion of social network by hackers should alert the management to seek technical assistance to avert the situation. For instance, coding the website to enhance quick alert in case a stranger invades it is an appropriate strategy.
How national trust promotes its activities
National trust uses two main platforms to market its products. They include above- the- line and below- the- line promotion channels. Above-the-line promotions entail use of TV, radio, bill-boards, cinemas and newspapers to promote their products and services. Below-the-line promotion strategy entails targeting of a specific audience. They include e-mails, press release, exhibitions and sales promotions. These strategies enhance accessibility of information to the relevant audience.
Effectiveness of these strategies
These strategic approaches enable the organization to pass information of new and existing products to existing and prospective clients
Role of 4Ps and AIDA business tools to inform a business of its strategic direction
The 4Ps are a marketing matrix that is essential in evaluating the capability of a company to meet customers ‘needs and achieve its objectives. These elements include product, price, place and promotion. (Mooradian, Matzler and Ring, 2012).
Product: An organization should choose products that reflect the tastes and preferences of a group of people in a certain geographical location. Through feasibility study, the company is cushioned against a mismatch of products with the wrong audience.
Price: When determining the price to trade the products, the management should set the price not higher than the market rate, unless it is a monopoly.Moreover, elasticity of demand for the products should be a factor to consider considering.
Place: The location of the market should factor when determining means of distributing the products to the customers. For instance, use of social network is appropriate when the location is far and technologically advanced.
Promotion: This element involves the techniques of marketing products to reach a wide audience. The economic level of the location should be put into perspective when assessing the channels of marketing a company’s Products and services. (Hastings, 2012).
In addition, promotion is enhanced through AIDA model which entails awareness, interest, desire and action. The model enables the marketers to lure customers to buy their products without violating ethical standards.
Awareness: It involves creating attention to new customers of the company’s products or informs existing customers of a new product in the market.
Interest: using captivating words to convince the customer how important is the product to him or her
Desire: create desire to the customer to buy the products
Action: act on the customer to purchase to purchase the products
Advantages and disadvantages of social media for promotional purposes in a business
Social media enables an organization to market its products to a wide range of audience within a short period. Moreover, it saves on cost unlike physical marketing which is tedious, time-consuming and costly. (Kashani and Jeannet, 2005).
One of the major obstacles to social networking is the cyber crime which has become a global concern. People hack into individuals and corporate E-mails and operate under the disguise of the administrator. This has been costly for businesses and corporate who are investing heavily to mitigate the situation.
National trust: The use of social media in promotion. (2012). the Times 100, 6. Retrieved from www.thetimes100.co.uk
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