(SCH) operates in the holiday cottage market. Her stakeholders include the cottage owners, the local government tourist authority and consumers. The purchase decision process is high involvement and based upon high levels of trust. This marketing plan aim to help SCH to retain her competitive advantages and establishing the company to become the most well known holiday cottage provider in the market, which eventually increases the customer attendance and gains profits.
According to our data, we have determined to use the advanced marketing communication tool – the Internet to match with the traditional promotional mix. Internet being widely used all over the world, it is the best way to give the up-to-date information, to provide round-the-clock services and to communicate with all the widely spread potential customers. The Internet absolutely can strengthen and broaden the existing promotional mix. It helps SCH reposition her situation. We plan to launch the SCH own web page to suit nowadays marketing trends.
It can facilitate the customers to obtain the information online at anytime they like, in the freedom of designing different combinations of their holidays in terms of rent, destination, size of accommodation and facilities available inside the selected cottage. Besides the general information, some features will be included inside the homepage to provide the customers more convenience, for example, the updated railway schedule, bus routes, interactive maps of different cottages. It will also include a forum/customer feedback area, where customers can express their feelings, opinions and suggestions for the cottages and their journeys.
The homepage not only allows SCH to response to the customers more quickly, but also to improve the customer relationship into the more customers focused one. It is inevitable for us and the customers to choose the Internet as one of the medium for marketing communication. The main problem faced by SCH is weather, which can be hardly forecasted and controlled. A poor early summer in Britain will lead to an increase in late demand for holidays aboard (as happened in 1991), while a mild winter followed by a promisingly warm spring will lead people to plan to take their holidays at home in Britain.
Therefore, the business is seasonal, and the peak season is summer from June to September. The major clients of SCH is the cottage owners, they usually choose an agent (such as SCH) to represent themselves and take up the responsibilities for marketing properties and managing bookings. They reward the agent for each successful booking. One of the ways to increase gain is to fully utilize the cottage holidays through the whole year, not only the peak seasons. We must enlarge the market segment to those retired couples, provide and attract them by special discount for non-peak season travel.
The relationship between the cottage owners and SCH is another major factor influencing future revenues. Therefore public relation will also be strengthened. Based on the information from SCH, we identified the following target market segments as potential clients are mainly from the social groups concentrated at A, B and C1; families and married couples. Cottage holidays market is highly competitive. Thus, fast response and accurate information are necessary. Since many potential customers are unsure of their destinations, they look to the agent for in-depth advice and competitive price.
SCH always excels in providing useful information and tailoring satisfactory vacation for the customers, who can save time and money at the end. To cope with the changes caused by the launching of our webpage, our organization is going to restructure. We shall hire a webpage design company and a web hosting company to assist us to develop our own webpage. The top management will inform the staff about the changes, fully communicate with them, and let them know about all the changes are essential for SCH future development, such as Human resources department shall provide training to the existing staffs to familiar with the changes.
An IT department shall be set up for future maintenance and updating about the webpage. Customer services department shall take over those enquires, complaints and suggestions from the customer via Internet and everybody within SCH shall appreciate the changes. The external customers such as cottage owners shall be informed about such campaign. This will arise our awareness within the market and also the exposure of their cottages through our webpage. It is necessary to communicate with them on a regular basis to gain their cooperation. This may increase our bargaining power to raise the percentage refund from those owners.
On the other hand, we can ask for special discount of the rent from them. It provides us a price advantage. SCH shall communicate with the local government department, such as The Regional Tourist Board (RTB) about her mission, strategies and performance in the hope of getting more financial assistance to pursuit her goals and objectives. It is important to communicate with the other organizations in the network (e. g. Coach Company) and in the communities in which SCH operates, or is likely to operate, with a view to build the reputation of the organization.