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Marketing Opportunity Analysis

Essay by   •  December 10, 2011  •  Case Study  •  1,164 Words (5 Pages)  •  1,878 Views

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1) How are customers' tastes changing in the fast-food industry? What impact do these changes have on McDonald's?

According to the case the customers tastes are changing towards the following trends:

* More healthy choices since the customer is more aware of the impact of fast food on health and some statistics reflect that 66.5% of adults in the United States are overweight or obese and 17 % of adolescents and 19 % of children are overweight. And the trend towards health and nutritious awareness has even brought the government attention to regulations for food industries that are seen as marketing unhealthy food.

* More awareness about the purchasing power being affected by the economic situation at the time being since the recession affected the personal financial situations and made people eat out less.

* More sophisticated preference and looking for better alternatives than the fast food chains .Also looking for a variety of products within the fast food restaurants.

* Looking for convenience and time saving since people are looking for a meal that will not take effort or time to prepare or even order it.

McDonald's had to go through dynamic market expansion, new products, and special promotional strategies, along with some major changes in its service and drive though along with new themes in order to be able to follow the market trend and to be able to compete in a mature market.

Regarding the healthy trend and more healthy choices McDonald's offered more healthy meals such as Chicken grilled sandwich and McDonald's advertising message focused on tasty and nutritious food. Regarding the awareness about the purchasing power and the economic situation McDonald's had to make value priced offerings and meals .Regarding the preferences of the customer and the increase of the fast -casual dining segment McDonald's launched the McCafe that shares an entrance with a traditional McDonald's restaurant and offers selection of specialty drinks and some baked foods in order to offer an upscale coffee shop environment .McDonald's had to come up with " New Tastes Menu " items in order to be able to compete with other fast food restaurants both in the hamburger and non hamburger segments .Also McDonald's recognized the importance of drive -thru customers so it worked on improving the service and the speed of drive through delivery .

2) How well are these changes in customer tastes and preferences being reflected in competitive strategies in the industry?

All restaurants are aware of those changes whether it was the trend towards healthier food or more variety in the menus or more value priced offerings to address the changes in the environment.

Regarding the health awareness trend fast food chains are trying to do the following:

* Increase the availability of lower-calorie products, menu items and meals.

* Shift the emphasis of marketing. The marketing of lower-calorie and less-calorie-dense food should increase accompanied by a reduction in marketing that highlights higher-calorie (or calorie-dense) foods or encourages large portions.

* Strengthen and/or create education and promotion programs regarding salads, grilled food, vegetables, no- and low-fat milk and milk products, whole grains, and foods low in saturated fats and trans-fatty acids.

Regarding the variety in menu items, all chains try to add new item lines and also concentrate on quality, customer satisfaction, and innovation in its food menu.Also the fast food restaurants try to compete with the price difference edge by offering permanent array of value price offerings.

3) What are McDonald's strengths and weaknesses and what conclusions do you draw about the future?

McDonald's major strengths are:

* Being the market leader in both the domestic and international markets in fast food chains



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