An international retail leader, Walmart is one of the largest international retail chains and operates more than ten thousand stores in twenty-eight countries. As a global company, it tries to achieve cost leadership through product distribution and advanced information systems. Their market saturation strategy helps retain competition and the high profitability of their major product lines, which allows them to keep such low prices on products. Therefore, the company has made considerable efforts to develop an effective promotion and communication strategy.
Walmart spends billions of dollars on advertising campaigns annually, and its commercials are aired nationally. They advertise products on TV and in newspapers, where discounted products are stated. The company also delivers information about their most popular items on the radio and advertises through different websites (Walker 91). The content of the ads varies and often addresses specific topics such as organic food at moderate prices or current social issues. One of Walmart’s latest campaigns was designed to showcase its positive role in society as a company that helps customers save money and gives career prospects to its employees. Meanwhile, Walmart has decided to cut down on advertising costs and rely on word of mouth instead of engaging in traditional campaigns.
The company gains publicity and customer interaction through Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. Walmart uses these social media platforms to transmit its message to its stakeholders. The company has also introduced mobile applications that engage customers in mobile shopping. Moreover, Walmart has enabled customers to rate their products and services, thus allowing the company to easily learn about customers’ experiences. In regards to PR, Walmart used to collaborate with outside agencies of different levels, such as Ketchum or Martin Agency. These agencies assisted in creating effective campaigns and helped appeal to new markets (Roberts and Berg 56). Apart from outside agencies, Walmart utilizes their own website to inform investors and clients about innovations. Quite frequently, they publish press releases and information to make their operations more transparent.
Walmart usually offers seasonal sales promotions, along with discounts during Christmas and other holidays. Many people anticipate Black Friday every year. The retailer also announces sales promotions and special deals on the website (Tanner and Raymond 365). Moreover, the company operates eleven international websites, facilitate convenient 24-hour online shopping in different countries and contribute to the development of e-commerce. Walmart has developed a mobile payment technology that is available to any iOS or Android user and supports all major credit and debit cards. The app allows customers to find useful information instantly and features a barcode search function.
Like many other companies, Walmart uses a personal selling strategy (Lamb, Hair, and McDaniel 288). For instance, shop assistants offer customers samples of new products, while sales personnel quite often notify shoppers about new deals in stores. Customer service personnel liaise with customers and ensure that Walmart maintains its productive relationship strategy with its clientele.
Walmart enhances customer experience through its interactive website. The company carries out various surveys to elicit customers’ ideas on the services provided and to reward active participants. The reward system encourages customers to give feedback to the company (“Marketing communication” 27). Walmart has created a mobile application called Savings Catcher that compares prices on the same products and provides a gift card in the event that Walmarts price is higher (Tharp 36). The whole purpose of the app is to show the significant advantage of shopping at Walmart.
Walmart plans its overall promotion strategy thoroughly to reinforce interaction with customers. The company is dedicated to improving its marketing strategy and maintaining its image at the highest level in order to maximize the effectiveness of its marketing. As one of the leading companies in the retail industry, Walmart constantly enhances its communication strategy. Walmart manages its digital, promotional and customer services to earn customer loyalty, institute superior marketing processes and maintain its position as an international retail leader.
Lamb, Charles, Joe Hair, and Carl McDaniel. MKTG 8, Boston: Cengage Learning, 2014. Print.
Marketing Communication. New York, NY: Pearson Learning Solutions, 2014. Print.
Roberts, Bryan and Natalie Berg. Walmart: Key Insights and Practical Lessons from the World’s Largest Retailer, London: Kogan Page Publishers, 2012. Print.
Tanner, John, and Mary Anne Raymond. The Promotion (Communication) Mix, Washington, D. C.: Flat World Knowledge, Inc. 2012, Print.
Tharp, Marye. Transcultural Marketing, Abingdon: Routledge, 2014. Print.
Walker, Orville. Marketing Strategy: A Decision-Based Approach, North Ryde: McGraw-Hill Education Australia, 2015, Print.