This report intends to the marketing analysis of Yankee Candle Inc., a US based company with the focus on their marketing mix as well as their relevant marketing strategies. The importance of this business can be gauged from the fact that candle manufacturing and in particular the scented candle manufacturing industry has become an essential product for the consumers. The industry is moderately concentrated; more than half of the revenue of the industry is generated by The Yankee Candle Company. With the rise in the disposable incomes, the revenue has been given a boost as the purchase of the discretionary products like candles has been increased by the consumers. In order to sustain and expand in the competitive environment, businesses need to focus on their marketing strategies and to decide optimally about the four Ps of the marketing mix; those are the product to be offered, place of offering, price at which the product shall be available and the methods of promotion. The target is generally the women and due to their financial independence over the recent years, the candle industry has grown a lot.
The Yankee Candle Company, Inc. designs, develops, manufactures, retails and distributes scented candles. The company was founded in 1976 and is recognized as the number one name in the business of candle; the company has shared the “passion for fragrance” of its customers in each and every product that it brings to the market which is why it has become the bestselling brand of candles in the country. The company was formed based on a simple gift that a young man named Mike Kittredge made for his mother; he created a candle by melting his crayons to gift his mother on Christmas. With the popularity of and the high demand of that creation, this multimillion dollar company was initially formed (Yankeecandle.com, 2013). Presently, the company has more than 17,500 locations globally. The point of differentiation for the Yankee Candle Company is the uniqueness it offers in its products as compared to the products of the rivals. The major competitors of the company include Blyth, Bath & Body Works, and Lancaster County.
The strategy chosen by a company to penetrate the market is known as the marketing mix. It constitutes of all the tactics and actions which are used by the company to promote its product; in this case, the marketing mix of Yankee Candle Company Inc. includes the decisions pertaining to product, price, place and promotion.
The company offers the largest selection of candles and home fragrance scents throughout the globe with more than 150 fragrances. Along with the renowned line of scented candles known as the Housewarmer; the company also offers a wide variety of seasonal scented candles, specialty candles, car fresheners, candle accessories and products for home fragrance. In 2013, the company launched a new line of scented candles for spring which have been inspired by exotic fruits and the beach. The executive VP, brand, innovation and merchandising, Hope Margala Klein states “We also share in our customers’ desire to create distinctive experiences in their home and the on trend colors” (Yankeecandle.com, 2013).
The uniqueness of the products is their longevity and slow burning of the candles. In 2012, the company also launched its product line for men; the inspiration of those candles takes from fun, games and hard work. It has specially been introduced nearing the Father’s Day. With the new collection, the brand has expanded on its marketing by targeting both men and women. The candles and scents are of high-quality and special attention is given to the seasonal and specialty products and accessories. The candles are manufactured Massachusetts by master candle makers. The designs of the products are not only innovative but their scents are relaxing, and pleasant; in addition, it has been made sure that the fragrances enunciate modern décor.
Although the products offered by the company are unique and different, the company employs a competition-based pricing strategy and targets in retaining its customers. It ensures that all the prices are competitive while having in stock the best collections throughout the globe. But as the products are also special and customized; value-based pricing strategy is also pursued by the company. The special discounts and offers which are made on different occasions are not because of competition only, rather the company values its customers and to make them feel special, it also offers lower rates and discounts on its unique product line. Loyalty Points is also a scheme used by the company as some points are earned by the customer on each purchase and then these points can be used as a method of payment for the purchase in the future. PunchTab, the leading name in loyalty program has designed the loyalty program for Yankee (Hannah, 2013).
The candles and other products are sold through growing network of more than 500 retail stores that are owned by the company. Along with this, the company also owns an online business, international distribution, a division of Yankee Candle Fund-raising, and more than 19100 specialty retailers in America as the customer network is expanding. The company decided to undergo restructuring in 2009 where it terminated almost 330 employees, closed an underperforming retail store, and also closed its Illuminations retails stores as well as direct business (Tode, 2009).
Yankee Candle has employed Molecular, an internet services firm to make improvements in the website; the custom-order capability was redesigned and so the company takes full advantage of the cross channel opportunity of business (Rueter, 2012). Yankee Candle has its own retail stores but also supplies the products to grocery stores, drug stores, specialty stores and national department stores. The company employs the Distributed Order Management which brings inventory order and management closer. The delivery is directly in control of the company.
Yankee targets groups from all the age and income levels and so it required increasing its communication scope. For this purpose, it chose Echomail as the communication partner. EchoMail helps in sending emails to the target audience; it ensures staying in touch with the regular customers while reaching out to the potential ones. With EchoMail, the customers remain informed of the periodic offers of promotion, clearance sale and also of the launch of new products (Echomail.com, 2013). The company also targets the seasonal and occasional events and so special discounts and offers are given on such occasions like Valentine’s Day, Father’s Day or even Mother’s Day.
The public relations team of the company has proactively deals with national media to promote the programs which the target audience of the company consumes on regular basis. In order to launch the brand in Australia, Polkadot PR was chosen which uses these strategies: trade campaigns, weekly coverage of product placements in top magazines, collaborative branding on high profile events, and specially the media relations strategy. Along with Google, the company targets those visitors on their website who did not complete their purchase; this Remarketing campaign included sending both text and image ads to those visitors with special offer of discounts (Chatelain, 2010). Remarketing on the Google Display Network is a promotional strategy to reconnect with customers. A military discount has been offered by the company to pay respect to the military personnel.
Integrated Marketing Program
The company has been using the online marketing strategy along with the direct selling; and the website introduced the feature of client interaction. With the introduction of the online search facility, the consumers have been helped by the company and their user experience has been enhanced. One of the key contributors to the success of the company has been the vertical integration of the business and the design, manufacturing and even the distribution is in control of the business due to which the company has been providing a consistent high quality in its products. One of the marketing strategies which company used with the interaction of Google known as the Remarketing campaign was a great success as positive results were generated and around 10 percent of the visitors who abandoned the shopping carts returned to the website.
The marketing strategies employed by the business have contributed a lot in the success of the company. When the PR team promoted the men’s line, the only aim was to drive the customer traffic to the retails and website as Father’s Day was nearing. It was found that around 13,652 units of the Man candle collection was brought by consumers by the Father’s Day. Company has been employing direct marketing, internet marketing, advertising and public relations to promote its products. Specially the online strategy through which the customers can enter competition and share their experienced via social networking sites from the homepage of the company added a lot to the success of the business.
Yankee Candle Company Inc. is a leading brand in the candle industry and is present in many countries; with its global presence, the company has focused specially on the marketing tactics through which it can maintain its unique selling proposition of innovation and yet targeting all the more customers by the passage of time. Yankee has an innovative approach which is driven by the needs and passion of the customers for good fragrance and it ensures through its marketing strategies that the user experience is enhanced and the customer feel valued by the company.
Chatelain, R. (2010). Case study: Yankee Candle rolls out effort to thwart abandoned carts. DIRECT MARKETING NEWS, [online] 1st Oct. Retrieved from: http://www.dmnews.com/case-study-yankee-candle-rolls-out-effort-to-thwart-abandoned-carts/article/179810/ [Accessed: 9 Dec 2013].
Echomail.com (2013). EchoMail - Email & Social Media Marketing, Monitoring and Management.. [online] Retrieved from: http://www.echomail.com/case-study/yankee-candle.asp [Accessed: 9 Dec 2013].
Hannah, R. (2013). The Yankee Candle Company, Inc. Selects PunchTab as Loyalty Program Provider. Daily News, [online] 15th Nov. Retrieved from: http://loyalty360.org/resources/article/the-yankee-candle-company-inc.-selects-punchtab-as-loyalty-program-provider [Accessed: 9 Dec 2013].
Rueter, T. (2012). Yankee Candle hires an e-commerce vet to beef up direct sales. Internet Retailer, [online] 1st Aug. Retrieved from: http://www.internetretailer.com/2012/08/01/yankee-candle-hires-e-commerce-vet-beef-direct-sales [Accessed: 9 Dec 2013].
Tode, C. (2009). Yankee Candle to close Illuminations stores, direct business. DIRECT MARKETING NEWS, [online] 21st Jan. Retrieved from: http://www.dmnews.com/yankee-candle-to-close-illuminations-stores-direct-business/article/126202/ [Accessed: 9 Dec 2013].
Yankeecandle.com (2013). Yankee Candle : Company Profile. [online] Retrieved from: http://www.yankeecandle.com/about-yankee-candle/company-profile/t [Accessed: 9 Dec 2013].