An Evaluation of the Promotion Management of Information Solution Limited
The report is done on the Promotion Management of Information Solution Limited to explain and evaluate the promotional activities and to identify problems related to promotional activities of Information Solution limited. The report is descriptive type in nature and prepared with secondary data. Information Solution Ltd is the technology distributor of Bangladesh and a leading technology sales, marketing and logistics company. Since its beginning in 1993, it has connected technology solution providers with users nationwide, identifying markets and technologies that shape the IT industry by distributing and marketing IT products from nearly 35 suppliers to thousands of people. Service support is the key differentiation factor for the company over its competitors.
Information Solution limited doing its promotion with different types of promotional tolls and these are described in the past three of the report. The company uses direct marketing, advertising, public relations and corporate image, managing exhibitions and trade events, sales promotion etc as their promotional tools.
In the market of IT product sales and distribution, most of the times, companies compete among them with same branded foreign products. This uniqueness of the sector makes the market promotion a must needed requirement for Information Solution limited. Since the company is doing its promotional activates well, there are some problems from lack of aggressive advertisement and lack of sufficient budget for promotion etc. The company also doesn’t specify its target customers before promotional activities. Here, in this report, some recommendations are made for the company to overcome the problems about the promotional activities. The target market should be identified before go for any promotional activities as it would help the company to know its target customers and their wants and needs. To win over competition the company needs aggressive promotional activity though electronic media, like television advertisement. If the company can bring some changes in the promotional activities, then Information Solution Ltd. would be almost flawless in its sector.
IT Industry is one of the promising industries in our country. The importance of the sector revealed through its contribution to the communication of the country.
Information technology is concerned with improvements in a variety of human and organizational problem-solving endeavors through the design, development, and use of technologically based systems and processes that enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of information in a variety of strategic, tactical, and operational situations. Ideally, this is accomplished through critical attention to the information needs of humans in problem solving tasks and in the provision of technological aids, including electronic communication and computer-based systems of hardware and software and associated processes.
Objectives of the Study
- To identify the tools of promotion used by Information Solution Ltd.
- To explain and evaluate the promotional activities of Information Solution Ltd.
- To identify problems related to promotional activities of Information Solution Ltd.
- To make some recommendations to solve the problems.
Methodology of the Study
The report is descriptive type in nature from following listed secondary sources.
- Prior research Reports on Information Solution Ltd
- Some printed materials like catalog, brushier, hand notes etc.
- Web site of the company.
For analysis of data, table, chart and graphical representation, Microsoft word and Microsoft excel were used.
Introduction to the Organization
Since its beginning in 1993, Information Solutions ltd has connected technology solution providers with users nationwide, identifying markets and technologies that shape the IT industry. The company offers a broad array of solutions and services to thousands by distributing and marketing IT products from nearly 35 suppliers.
HP, DELL, APPLE, Samsung, corsair, DLink, Linksys, Molex, Apacer, Transcend, Foxcon, Targus, Norton Antivirus, Lexmark, Fujitsu, Intel, MSI, Prolink, Avermedia, Microlab, CSM, Perfect, Logitech, are well known brands of Information Solution Limited. Service support is the key differentiation factors for the company over its competitors. The company has created its own warranty brand called ‘BUY 48’ under which it offers solution to its valued customers within 48 hours of warranty claim.
Product and Service offering
Product of ISL
Dell: Information Solution Limited Distribute Dell notebooks, Brand PC, Projectors, Monitors
Apple: Apple is the number one brand product in the world. Technology & future is very much high. All kinds of Apple pc and notebook Information Solution Limited distribute
Fujitsu: Sole Distributor for Japanese made Fujitsu notebook pc and in Bangladesh.
CSM: CSM is the local brand by Information Solution Limited that includes desktop pc. CSM is the channel product of Intel.
Clone PC: Information Solution Limited is a major supplier of computer parts and accessories in the local market.
External Hard Drive: Western Digital, Transcend & Apacer branded External hard disk are Information Solution Limited distribute.
Lexmark: Sole distributor for popular USA brand Lexmark for its full range of printing solutions.
Monitors: Information Solution Limited deals Samsung, HP and dell brand LED and LCD monitors. It has got different size and specification of LED & LCD to cater for varying needs of customer.
Motherboard: Information Solution Limited deals with the global IT leader Intel, foxcon and innovative MSI for full range of desktop boards. It has got different price range and specifications.
Processor: Information Solution Limited is the authorize distributor for Intel Processor.
Hard Drive: To store the data safe in desktop pc Information Solution Limited deals with western digital hard disk drive.
RAM: Information Solution Limited distributes many branded RAM. Apacer, Cheval, Corsair, Transand. Multimedia PC speaker to Home Theater System.
Services of ISL
We assists in deploying effective and resilient ICT infrastructure allowing various business processes to link together seamlessly and produce greater benefits. We provide standard based, cost effective business integration services to integrate desired IT components developed across different platform into a seamless, user friendly, maintainable and upgradable IT infrastructure system for tangible and long term reduction in IT cost.
- Server Solution: Intel Server Solution
- Network Storage Solution: SAN, NAS
- Local Area Networking: Network Design Verifications, Implementation & Certifications
- Structured Cabling: UTP/Fiber optic backbone network PABX cabling
Wide Area Network (WAN): Radio Link Solution, Leased Line Solution, Any third Party Link (i.e. VSAT) Solution
Add-on Services: Virtual Private Network (VPN), IP Telephony & VoIP, Cisco full range of solution, Dlink full range of solution.
To ensure these solutions effectively ISL uses world class Hardware’s. ISL Also represents computers in Bangladesh, which is the largest selling brand computer locally. ISL is currently the largest distributor of Dell Products lines with
- Micro Computers
- Work Stations
ISL has the expertise to build simple Ethernet to complex Fiber Network and Wireless Networks for any type of organization. We have wide expertise in setting up and managing all range of switches, routers, wireless networks, VPN, security and network management solutions.
Service & Maintenance
We draw from our wide ranging, deep rooted expertise and industry experience to enable customer, deploy, consolidate, and upgrade their IT infrastructure in timely, cost effective and SLA (Service Level Agreement) based deployment and maintenance.
At ISL, our aim is simple; to provide you with the most comprehensive range of innovative and market-leading products there is. Together with our unrivalled support packages, ISL’s unique blend of products and skills will provide you with an unbeatable opportunity to develop your own business, and generate additional revenue.
We don’t just provide you with products – we provide you with the RIGHT products. We work with you to evaluate your requirements, and only offer the applications and services tailored to your needs. ISL provides you with a complete product solution, and can configure and integrate products and systems on your behalf, saving you time and development resource. Furthermore we provide full technical backup, including on-site services, meaning you and your customers can purchase with the confidence that full support is available when needed.
Promotion Management of Information Solution Limited
Marketing Mix (4P) of Information Solution Limited
Achieving Promotion Management requires a variety of integrated strategies, and promotional activity plays a vital part in the marketing mix. Promotion is one of the socalled four P’s of marketing, the others being product, price and place. The promotion category focuses on strategies a business can use to provide information to consumers about its products. Specifically, promotion involves the strategies of advertising, personal selling, sales promotion and public relation.
A product is seen as an item that satisfies what a consumer demands. It is a tangible good or an intangible service. Tangible products are those that have an independent physical existence. Information Solution Ltd is distributing world’s most popular 46 brands in Bangladesh it market. Quality of the product has no more doubt at all. Information Solution Ltd is always assuring the quality of product. Information Solution Ltd provide all kinds of it product in Bangladesh. Product is packaged from the factory of main company. Information Solution Ltd provides one to three years warranty of each product. If the clients facing any problem within three days Information Solution Ltd return those product.
Information Solution Ltd maintains the price tag of each main, and Information Solution Ltd always maintains the price strictly. Information Solution Ltd set the price 6.5% above from the import cost. Information Solution Ltd provide some discount offer. Information Solution Ltd sale the product by two payment terms, which is cash and credit card. Information Solution Ltd provide flexi buy facility by credit card of Scb, Brac and Amex
Refers to providing the product at a place which is convenient for consumers to access. Information Solution Ltd has 45 branches in Bangladesh. Within Dhaka Information Solution Ltd transfer the product by own pick. For outside Dhaka transfer the product by courier service. Information Solution Ltd strictly handles the inventory by the online software.
Promotions refer to the entire set of activities, which communicate the product, brand or service to the user. The idea is to make people aware, attract and induce to buy the product, in preference over others.
There are several types of promotions. Above the line promotions include advertising, personal selling, consumer promotions (schemes, discounts, contests), while below the line include trade discounts, freebies, incentive trips, awards, public relations and so on. Sales promotion is a part of the overall promotion effort.
Advertising occurs when a company pays to communicate its sales message to consumers. For example, a company could use a television advertisement to let customers know about a conveniently located store’s rock-bottom prices. In other words, the advertisement integrates the pricing strategy — the low prices — and the place strategy — the store’s convenient location — to ensure all marketing strategies work together to achieve the same objective.
- Personal Selling
Personal selling involves salespeople who use their skills to persuade consumers to buy a product or service. Salespeople often use pricing strategies to convince customers to buy a product, thus integrating the price and promotion categories of the four P’s. Other personal selling tactics include highlighting the specific benefits of a product and offering free delivery, which, respectively, integrate product and place strategies.
- Sales Promotion
Sales promotions are temporary incentives that make a product more attractive to buyers, according to the book “Advertising, Promotion and Other Aspects of Integrated Marketing Communications”. Coupons, discounts, sales and bulk pricing are forms of sales promotions.
These tactics obviously integrate well with a business’s overall pricing strategy, but they also can integrate well with product and place strategies. For example, a coupon might inspire customers to try a new product, and a store-wide sale might help generate publicity for a new store location.
- Public Relations
The public relations element involves promoting a product or service in an informal sense, for example, by developing a company’s reputation for customer service so that people recommend its products to others. Associating a company with charitable endeavors is another way to generate public goodwill. Companies also can integrate other marketing strategies. For example, a business might advertise that the profits from an upcoming sale will fund a charity located in a geographic region into which the company hopes to expand its operations.
Core Marketing Activities
- Direct marketing
- Corporate Image and Public Relations
- Managing Exhibitions and Trade Events
- Sales Promotion
Direct marketing is a channel-agnostic form of advertising which allows businesses and nonprofit organizations to communicate straight to the customer, with advertising techniques that can include cell phone text messaging, email, interactive consumer websites, online display ads, database marketing, fliers, catalog distribution, promotional letters, targeted television commercials, response-generating newspaper/magazine advertisements, and outdoor advertising. Amongst its practitioners, it is also referred to as Direct Response.
Direct marketing messages emphasize a focus on the customer, data, and accountability.
Hence, besides the actual communication, creation of actionable segments, pre- and postcampaign analytics, and measurement of results, are integral to any good Direct Marketing campaign. Characteristics that distinguish direct marketing are:
A database of names (prospects, customers, businesses, etc.), often with certain other relevant information such as contact number/address, demographic information, purchase habits/history, company history, etc., is used to develop a list of targeted entities with some existing common interests, traits or characteristics. Generating such a database is often considered part of the Direct Marketing campaign.
Marketing messages are addressed directly to this list of customer and/or prospects. Direct marketing relies on being able to address the members of a target market.
Addressability comes in a variety of forms including email addresses, phone numbers, Web browser cookies, fax numbers and postal addresses.
Direct marketing seeks to drive a specific “call to action.” For example, an advertisement may ask the prospect to call a free phone number, mail in a response or order, or click on a link to a website.
Direct marketing emphasizes track able, measurable responses, results and costs from prospects and/or customers—regardless of medium.
Direct marketing is practiced by businesses of all sizes—from the smallest start-up to the leaders on the Fortune 500. A well-executed direct advertising campaign can prove a positive return on investment by showing how many potential customers responded to a clear call-to- action. General advertising eschews calls-for-action in favor of messages that try to build prospects’ emotional awareness or engagement with a brand. Even welldesigned general advertisements rarely can prove their impact on the organization’s bottom line. The demonstrable result of Direct Marketing is the reason for its increasing popularity.
Advertising can be divided into two categories as for marketing activities: Print media advertising and outdoor advertising.
Print media advertising:
Print media advertising is strong promotional tool for any company. Information Solution Ltd maintain Print media—newspapers, m a g a z i n e s , and newsletters — to reach large individual and corporate groups. Standing columns in newspapers and magazines can communicate issues on a regular basis. An advantage of print media is that it lasts; it can be reread, clipped out, copied, and passed on. A disadvantage is that, unlike radio and television, it cannot convey a host’s personality or the interaction between someone suffering from a mental disorder and a psychiatrist.
As part of our public service, for the past year they have published a free monthly newsletter, ISL Newsletter, for their clients. Production costs are negligible as they use desktop publishing and edited versions of copy from our media program.
Advantage of print media advertising:
- Fast & Permanent
- Can include coupons
- Targeting – can be focused
- No limitations on volume
- Can be grouped
- Full attention of reader
Against of Print media advertising
- Short Life
- Poor print quality
- Passive medium
- Static medium
- Literacy levels
Information Solution Ltd Activities for Print Media Advertising
Information Solution Ltd. published a quantity paper, magazine advertises each year. They have in-house design section, in-house ad booking, and ad tracking etc system. Their main printing daily media are Ittefaq, Prothom Alo, Jugantor, Amader Somoy, Somokal etc and monthly. magazines are e-biz, c news, pc world, computer jagot, technology tomorrow etc. They mainly use IT pages and IT magazine for our advertising and press releases.
This lecture covers Information Solution Ltd’s outdoor advertising in its various forms. In designing advertising for this application, they need to consider the target audience, the message they are trying to convey, and the situation that the viewer is in. For example –
Transport Advertising – inside is very different from outside. Inside the bus or the train, the viewer has a longer time to study the content. They can make the advert text-heavy – but to attract and retain attention we need to make it eye-catchy. Adverts on the outside of the bus will be seen by a different audience – different types of people, perhaps with less time to read the advertisement.
Information Solution Ltd’s main outdoor advertising category
- Gas balloon
- Shop signboard
Billboards and Posters:
Billboards and Posters are the main promotional tool for Information Solution Ltd. In the way of busy area and eye catching place we hang billboard and poster. Advantage of billboards and poster are low Cost, can be localized, can be used seasonally, easily changed etc.
Disadvantage of billboards and poster are limited capacity, difficult to evaluate, difficult to target, vulnerability, noise, environmental restrictions
Banner and Leaflet:
In all types of Information Solution Ltd events, banner and leaflet is mandatory for product promotion. Banner and leaflet is the easy way to increase customer awareness. For banner and leaflet they have in-house designer and in-house publishing firm. So in the very short period of time we can create any types banner and leaflet as per the demand of customer.
Corporate Image and Public Relation
A corporate image refers to how a corporation is perceived. It is a generally accepted image of what a company “stands for”. The creation of a corporate image is an exercise in perception management. It is created primarily by marketing experts who use public relations and other forms of promotion to suggest a mental picture to the public. Typically, a corporate image is designed to be appealing to the public, so that the company can spark an interest among consumers, create share of mind, generate brand equity, and thus facilitate product sales.
Corporate Image of Information Solution Ltd
Corporate branding is a potentially strong tool for re-aligning a corporate strategy and ensures that the corporation – big or small – is leveraging adequately on the un-tapped internal and external resources. There are 10 crucial steps on the way to a successful corporate branding strategy, and they can serve as a useful guide for any corporate branding project
(1) The CEO leads the brand strategy work
The starting point for corporate branding must be the board room, which is also serving as the most important check-point during the project. The CEO must be personally involved in the brand strategy work, and he/she must be passionate and fully buy into the idea of branding. To ensure success despite the daily and stressful routine with many duties at the same time, the CEO must be backed by a strong brand management team of senior contributors, who can facilitate a continuous development and integration of the new strategy
(2) Build Information Solution Ltd own model as not every model suits all
All companies have their own specific requirements, own sets of business values and a unique way of doing things. Therefore, even the best and most comprehensive branding models have to be tailored to these needs and requirements. Often, only a few but important adjustments are needed to align them with other similar business models and strategies in the company to create a simplified toolbox. Remember that branding is the face of a business strategy so these two areas must go hand in hand
(3) Advance the corporate vision
The corporate branding strategy is an excellent channel for advancing the corporate vision throughout the company. It allows the management to involve, educate and align everyone around the corporate objectives, values and future pathway. It provides a guiding star and leads everyone in the same direction. The internal efforts are at least 50% of making a corporate branding strategy successful.
(4) Exploit new technology
Modern technology should play a part of a successful corporate branding strategy.
Technology helps to gain effectiveness and improve the competitive edge of the corporation.
A well-designed and fully updated Intranet is a must in today’s working environment which has become increasingly virtual with employees working from home, from other locations and traveling across the globe to name only a few factors.
(5) Create the right delivery system
The corporate brand is the face of the business strategy and basically it promises what all stakeholders should expect from the corporation. Therefore, the delivery of the right products and services with all the implications this entail should be carefully scrutinized and evaluated on performance before any corporation starts a corporate branding project. Think of the cradle to grave concept of a lifelong customer and the value he/she will provide in such a time span. Make sure he/she is handled with outstanding care according to internal specifications and outside expectations. The moment of truth is when the corporate brand promise is delivered well – and it does not hurt if the corporation exceeds the customer expectation. Singapore Airlines runs a very rigid, detailed and in-depth description of any customer touch points with the corporation, and several resources are spend on making sure it actually does happen every time to every customer.
All employees regardless of title and rank from Singapore Airlines spend a not insignificant amount of workdays being trained every year.
Bring the corporate brand to life through a range of well-planned, well-executed marketing activities, and make sure the overall messages are consistent, clear and relevant to the target audiences. Make sure the various messages are concise and easy to comprehend. Do not try to communicate every single point from the corporate branding strategy. Instead, a selective approach will make much more impact using the same resources.
(7) Information Solution Ltd always measures the brand performance
A brand is accountable and so should a corporate brand be. How much value does it provide to the corporation and how instrumental is the brand in securing competitiveness? These are some of the questions which need to be answered and which the CEO will automatically seek as part of his/her commitment to run the strategy successfully. The brand equity consists of various individually tailor-made key performance indicators (including the financial brand value) and needs to be tracked regularly. A brand score card can help facilitating an overview of the brand equity and the progression as the strategy is implemented.
Public relations (PR) are managed by Computer Source Limited for internal and external communication of an organization to create and maintain a positive image. Public relations may involve popularizing successes, downplaying failures, announcing changes, and many other activities. Public relations and publicity are not synonymous but many PR campaign include provisions for publicity.
Information Solution Ltd conduct PR as Publicity is the spreading of information to gain
- Public awareness for a product, person, service, cause or organization, and can be seen as a result of effective PR planning.
- Audience targeting.
- Customer loyalty.
- TV Media, paper media and other communicative public relations are tainted by Information Solution Ltd.
Exhibitions and Trade Events
Exhibitions and Trade Events is the mix sales promotion tool for Information Solution Ltd.
Every year Information Solution Ltd campaigns continuous exhibitions and trade events for their brand promotion. The main objective of any exhibition is to introduce their product and service to all level of customer. Reason for any exhibitions or any trade events is:
- To meet new customers
- To enhance company Image
- To interact with customers
- To promote existing products
- To interact with distributors
- To take sales order
- To meet with new distributors
Some recent successful exhibitions and trade events sponsored and organized by Information Solution Ltd are –
- Laptop party
- BCS IT Expo, Multiplan Centre
- HP Boishakhi road show
- Logitech road show at bashundhara city
- CSM PC road show
- BCS Computer Fair, Dhaka
Sales promotion is any initiative undertaken by an organization to promote an increase in sales, usage or trial of a product or service (i.e. initiatives that are not covered by the other elements of the marketing communications or promotions mix). Sales promotions are varied.
Often they are original and creative, and hence a comprehensive list of all available techniques is virtually impossible (since original sales promotions are launched daily).Here are some examples of Information Solution Ltd sales promotions activities in the year 2013:
- During the Ramadan month, there was gift voucher of Tk.500 with each HP Notebook. After this promotion, sales volume increased by 5%.
- From 1st September 2014, 1% cash back is given on credit purchases and 1.5% in case of cash purchases for the purchases by the resellers. After this promotional offer, the sales volume has increased to the resellers.
- The installment facility of three credit cards are allowed in Information Solution Ltd which gives an added value to the sales volume and for this facility, sales volume almost increased by 40%.It is an important promotional activity by Information Solution Ltd In the Dell Laptop Fair 2015, discounts of Tk.500-Tk.5000 through scratch card was offered and there was the highest offer of one hour ride in the helicopter too. For this offer, sales volume has been increased by 100%. It was a very successful event for Information Solution Ltd.
- In April 2015, there was an offer of exchanging old HP notebook a long with tk 21,000 for a new HP notebook increase the sales of the HP notebook of the package significantly. The all HP notebook were sold by 2 months.
- There was an offer through an advertisement by Sakib-Al-Ahsan of one 8GB pen drive of Apacer free with every Norton antivirus. Information Solution Ltd got huge responses from this offer and since this offer; Norton has been the leader in the ant viruses in Bangladesh.
- Since 2013, one backpack is given free with every D-link router.
- Information Solution Ltd is very concerned of the promotion for the reseller. Trough out the year Computer promotions are: Source Limited runs sales promotion for them. Some promotions are:
- If any reseller purchases at least 30 pieces of Prolink UPS, then he would get a prize bond of Tk.1000.
- If any reseller purchases at least 30 pieces of Micro lab Speakers, then he would get 0.50% cash back, if he purchases 600 pieces or 1000 pieces, then he would get
- 1% or 1.5% cash back respectively.
- If any reseller can sell MSI Motherboard, then he would get a cash back of Tk.500
- Resellers are offered with a Corolla Fielder car free with 8000 Norton’s.
Information Solution Ltd always focused upon consumers demand to any sales promotions. Information Solution Ltd promotions mainly aimed at wholesalers and distributors as well. These are known as Trade Sales Promotions. Examples here might include joint promotions between a manufacturer and a distributor, sales promotion leaflets and other materials (such as T-shirts), and incentives for distributor sales people and their retail clients.
Increase of Sales volume due to the promotional activities
With a variety of promotional activities, adapted in the year 2011 and 2012, the sales volume of the company increased significantly.
Findings and Recommendations
Current economic scenario of Bangladesh IT market is not a promising one. Since this is a tough time for IT market, business houses are providing extra efforts in their promotional activities for their products. Same thing is happening in case of Information Solution Ltd.
The factors I have found in Information Solution Ltd are:
- The company always seeks for the low cost promotion which leads in lesser effectiveness of the promotional activities.
- The promotional activities do not always specify the target customers. They always go for common strategy.
- There is always lack of aggressive promotional activities. A company like ISL needs aggressive strategy to win over competitors.
- The major problem of the company is the promptness of the promotional activities.
- Sometimes the plan of the promotional activities gets disclosed to the competitors. Thus the competitors take counter activities.
- Lack of budget for advertisement is another problem of the company.
- Sometimes the company makes promotional activities for old products which results in a bad impression for the future.
- The company use vague information in their promotions.
- The website of the company does not have sufficient information about the products and services of the company.
- The of advertisement of the company is mainly based on newspaper advertisement. The company does not go for television advertisement.
- The company has excellent capacity to expand its business to enter into new market as well as for new product. But capacity utilization still not satisfactory for the company.
- The company does not promote its brand image properly.
There are some recommendations set out for the management of the company to overcome the shortcoming arises in Information Solution Ltd:
1) The company should not always remain conservative about the expense for promotional activities.
2) The target market should be identified before go for any promotional activities.
3) To win over competition the company needs aggressive promotional activity though electronic media.
4) The promptness in decision making for different promotional activities need to be ensured.
5) Promotional plans and strategies of the company must be kept secret from the competitors.
6) Budget for advertisement needs to be increased.
7) The company should take some creative ideas for promoting old products.
8) Different types of advertisement of the company must include more clear information about their product and services.
9) Website can be a great medium for promoting the company’s products. The website of the company need to be modified so that it includes more information about the company’s product.
10) The company should go for electronic media advertisement like television advertisement.
11) The company can use its capacity to promote its products in new markets.
12) The company can promote its brand name more widely.
As a market leader Information Solution Ltd provides comprehensive IT solutions to its channel and corporate partners. It creates sales & profitability opportunities for its business partners and resellers through unique marketing initiatives, logistics services, technical supports, and financial support services. Information Solution Ltd has an aim to distribute its all products throughout the country, even in district and upazilla level. In order to do that, market promotion is the major factor. Since they a vast product line, they should take the promotional activities in a regular basis. Though Information Solution Ltd faces a lot of barriers while doing their promotional tasks, it is doing quite well with its in-house media and marketing department. Information Solution Ltd also faces some barriers for its channel sales distribution. But due to its core strength in product and service support its business is growing day by day. To overcome the barriers Information Solution Ltd already has taken several initiatives which they think will add value in their business.