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Hunter Industries - Business Marketing

Essay by   •  February 2, 2013  •  Case Study  •  5,650 Words (23 Pages)  •  1,391 Views

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Hunter Industries has been a major player in the irrigation world since 1981. We have been at the top of our game, competing with heavy hitters such as Rain Bird© and Toro© for many years. The MP Rotator will bring us into the 21st Century with its remarkable water saving capabilities and even watering coverage of lawns both large and small. We expect this new marketing push to increase sales revenues by 2.5% in the first fiscal year, equaling millions of dollars. We will strive to make sure this plan is successful and the company continues to grow while maintaining its customer service and quality standards as outlines below.

2.0 Situation Analysis

The main challenge is 'how will we maintain the landscape while using less water?' The Government Accounting Office released a study in July 2003 that stated 36 of the 50 states are actively seeking ways to avert water shortages expected during the next 10 years. The public's desire for attractive landscapes that use less water affects both water suppliers and the irrigation industry at large. Water suppliers don't want to tell their customers that the landscape they desire and want must be changed, or go 'brown', and the irrigation and green industries are out of business if water is shut-off.

It is because of this growing trend to change to more water-wise landscapes that some water suppliers and the Irrigation Association have come together to encourage that change rather than ignore or avoid it altogether. Some background regarding this change is necessary here. Most water supply agencies have recognized that conservation efforts can actually help them instead of hurt them because it can pay dividends by stretching their water supplies and creating less need for new infrastructure.

The focus of this plan is on landscape or outdoor watering, and this is a more complicated problem. It's easy to identify large commercial high water users in landscape and educate them on smart irrigation and water conservation measures. However, the large gains in conservation come from the residential sector with in-ground irrigation systems, at least in the west, were residential irrigation is the most prevalent in the country. This target area is tough because all systems are different: different designers, different equipment, different installers, and different operators and local standards of maintenance. (Irrigation Association, 2012).

2.1 Market Summary

According to the Census Bureau, in early 2010, 66.9% of United States citizen were home owners. There are roughly 311 million people in the USA according to the US Census (2010), which translates roughly to 208 million homeowners. That is a very large potential market! CNN reports that that is a 1.1% drop from the 2000 census, (CNN, 2011). Recently national and local news shows and reports have said that the market is beginning to level out as sales of homes increase slightly, especially from the sale of foreclosed homes.

Some relevant trends in the US are the increased awareness of water consumption by many Americans. The installation of low water-use landscapes has caught on as water resources are depleted and the cost of water rises. The trend to be more water-use conscious includes topics like: low water-use and drought-tolerant plant choices for the geographical location, new irrigation technologies like rain censors, better layout and low-use irrigation heads, and truly Xeriscaped and 100% native landscapes that are indigenous to the region.

2.2 SWOT Analysis

The SWOT analysis provides us with an opportunity to examine the internal strengths and weaknesses. It also allows us to examine the opportunities presented as well as potential threats.

The Hunter Industries has a valuable inventory of strengths that will help it succeed. These strengths include: a knowledgeable, friendly and hard-working staff, an excellent line of products, and a clear vision of the market needs and wants. Strengths are valuable, but it is also important to realize the weaknesses the industry must address. These weaknesses include not meeting customer expectations, and the cost factor associated with updating irrigation systems or installing completely new systems.

Strengths

1. Knowledgeable and hard-working staff. They've gone to great lengths at Hunter Industries to find people with a passion for irrigation, water conservation and smart planning. The staff is both knowledgeable and eager to share their know-how and expertise.

2. Friendly demeanor. When you meet with a sales representative from Hunter Industries, you'll feel as though you matter. Attention is paid to you, the customer, and their focus is on your needs. Last, but not least, clear, concise presentation of their product offerings and quick response to any questions you have regarding those products.

3. Clear vision of the market need. Hunter Industries knows what it takes to build a good quality team and product. They know the customers, they know the regions they cover, and they know how to build the service that will bring the two together.

Weaknesses

1. A dependence on water and the rising cost of fuel. With the rising cost of fuel due to raise prices, the importing and manufacturing supplies and the distribution of products will be more expensive.

2. Cost factor associated with keeping up with marketing costs. Keeping up with marketing can be expensive. The need to balance the marketing costs with the other needs of the business. One aspect of the business can't be sacrificed for the other.

Opportunities

1. Business in the target areas, mostly West and Southwest US at large, as well as the importance of the local businesses are key to the success.

2. As the industry gains more acceptances and a reputation of conservation and money savings to the customer, more residential and commercial customers will recommend Hunter Industries to their friends and associates.

Threats

1. Emerging local competitors and distributors.

2. The product and service nature of Hunter Industries' business faces competition from other similar style Industries.

2.3 Competition

Currently, Hunter Industries has two large competitors, Toro© and Rain Bird©.

Rain Bird©, a privately held company founded in 1933, Rain Bird© Corporation is the leading manufacturer and provider of irrigation products and

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