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Corporate Level Strategy- Definition and Types

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Corporate level strategy- Definition and types

Do I tell you a secret? I used the word corporate-level strategy for many years without knowing what it actually meant. Later on, on finding out the meaning, I realized I was using it aright. A miracle right? Join us as we x-ray the concept of corporate-level strategy. It promises to be an interesting one.

 

What is Corporate Level Strategy?

Business owners need targeted corporate-level strategies to position themselves for success.

Corporate-level strategies define a plan to hit a specific target needed to achieve business goals.

Strategies tend to be long-term in nature but you should have a medium for adjustments, based on uncertainty and changing market conditions.

Let me explain.

Decision making in organizations come under 3 strata of management; the top, middle, and low-level management.

Strategies or what you can call business decisions are made by each of these levels. These strategies are made in 3 different ways by these management levels.

That is to say, strategies can be formulated at three levels, namely, the corporate level, the business level, and the functional level.

At the corporate level, the strategy is formulated for the organization as a whole. In essence, a corporate strategy deals with decisions related to various business areas in which the firm operates and competes. It is when a business makes a decision that affects the whole company.

The decision affects the company’s finances, management, human resources, where the products are sold, just about everything in the company. The purpose of a corporate-level decision is to maximize profitability and maintain financial success in the future.

In addition, this decision is utilized to help increase competitive advantage over competitors and to continue to offer a unique product or service to consumers.

I hope you understood the concept of Corporate level strategy or decision?

Let us now move to the types of corporate-level strategy.

 

What are the Types of Corporate Level Strategy?

Strategies can come in diverse forms. For the sake of this post, we will discuss the four major types of corporate strategy.

 

 

 

 

 

Expansion/Growth  Strategy

Every business wishes to grow and occupy a substantial market share if it wants to continue in that niche.

Growth strategies look at methods to get more revenues from the sales of products or goods.

There is a vertical and horizontal strategy when referring to growth strategies. A vertical strategy seeks growth by taking over various components of the operation it usually outsources.

For example, a juice company farming for the fruits it uses. By taking over part of the supply chain, they are able to better control quality and supply needs.

A horizontal growth strategy refers to a business extending its reach of existing products or services to new geographic areas or new target markets.  

I hope you know that this horizontal growth strategy can come in the form of niche marketing? That is expansion into other niches or market segments you never were involved in.

Mediums through which a company can expand are; Concentration, Integration, Diversification, Cooperation, and Internationalization. Concentration is done by Market penetration, Market Development, and Product development.

During the growth stage, you can promote it using Advertising. Learn Low-cost Advert Strategies.

 

Stability Strategy

It is possible for a company to reach its optimal market share goals.

At this point, management might choose a stability strategy to maintain market shares. Methods used to achieve this include making processes more cost-efficient through automation, cutting costs where possible, and negotiating better costs on raw materials.

So, when a company is convinced that it should continue in the existing business and is doing reasonably well in that business but no scope for significant growth, the stability is the strategy to be adopted.

This strategy also requires management to focus on customer retention. This is a popular strategy used during adverse economic periods.

However, there are times when this strategy makes sense for a small business, regardless of the external business environment. You have to figure that out.

If your business operating in the stability strategy, you can Pause/Proceed with caution, make no change or operate with a Profit strategy.

 

 Retrenchment Strategy

Retrenchment strategy may require a firm to redefine its business, abandon some markets or reduce its functions. It may make a firm layoff, reduce R&D or marketing or other outlays,  and increase the collection of receivables.

Redefining the business and reducing the pace of activities can improve the performance of a firm. Expansion in combination with Retrenchment is a very common strategy. Retrenchment alone is probably the least frequently used strategy.

Retrenchment strategy involves a partial or total withdrawal either from products, markets or functions in one or more of a firm’s businesses.

This strategy is used during periods of decline and crisis when a business is not thought to bring profitability back to the firm.

Reasons for following retrenchment strategy:

1. The firm is doing poorly, but if it is worth saving, you adopt a turnaround strategy.

2. If there is pressure from various groups of stakeholders to improve performance. You cut the loss-making portion of the business in a divestment strategy.

3. If better opportunities for doing business are available elsewhere a firm can better utilize its strengths. The company can liquidate.

 

Combination Strategy

Combination strategies are a mix of expansion, stability, or retrenchment strategies applied either at the same time in different businesses or at different times in the same business.

Actually, no organization has grown and survived by following a single strategy.

Normally, businesses require owners to adopt different strategies just to suit different situations.

For instance, as companies divest, they also need to formulate expansion plans that will strengthen the remaining businesses, start new ones or make acquisitions.

An organization following a stability strategy for quite some time has to consider expansion. And one that has been on expansion for long has to pause to sustain his businesses. Multi-business firms have to adopt multiple strategies either simultaneously or sequentially.

 

Conclusion

Corporate-level strategies are directives given by top management who make strategic/longterm decisions.

Don’t shy away from this because you are not a management expert.

In like manner, read slowly and ask questions where you don’t understand.

It is quite easy and can save your business from liquidation. In addition, know the strategy to use at every point in the business’s life.

Be wise!

Victory is a Certified Finance Personnel. She loves to write and relate to people.

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Business

E Marketing: The Ultimate Guide (Updated)

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E marketing

The internet has experienced a greater number of new users than any country has experienced natality over the past decade. Growing from an estimated 1.97 billion users in June 2010 to over 4.5 billion users as of April 2020. So, if the internet is a country it will be the most populous country on Earth and also the country with the highest GDP. Hence, if you’re looking to make the most from these stats and add some bucks to your pocket. E marketing or internet marketing is just a good place to kick off.

WHAT IS E MARKETING?

E marketing (also known as internet marketing or online marketing) refers to any online method used by businesses to pursue their marketing aim. As digital technology progressively becomes an integral part of our day to day lives marketers progressively figure out more contemporary ways to bring their products or services to users at different online platforms. Hence, we likely see more commercials online than offline. So, let’s understand how marketers do this by looking at the types of E marketing.

TYPES OF E MARKETING

There are 6 main types of E marketing. Every online marketer should have these 6 at their fingertip. Because each of them has its strategy and can also complement one another. Let’s explore them in detail.

  1. Social media marketing:

    It’s the use of different social media platforms, like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, to project one’s products to people. This type of E marketing can either be paid or organic (free).

    • Organic social media marketing-

      In this, companies leverage on the relationships they’ve built with a group of individuals to promote their products or services.

    • Paid social media marketing-

      This involves companies paying the social media platform of their choice to help them advertise their business. So, businesses have to create an ad that is tailored to their marketing aim. Afterward, register it with the social media platform that has their target market segment.

  1. Search Engine Optimization:

    Since most searches online are usually through search engines. By employing this type of E marketing companies optimize their site content to match searches by people and thereby increasing their search engine ranking. Furthermore, there are 2 methods of search engine optimization.

    • On-page SEO-

      From the name, by employing this method, businesses try to increase visits to their site by optimizing the content. Some SEO tools like Yoast SEO will help achieve this.

    • Off-page SEO-

      By doing this businesses aim to optimize their website through ways other than optimizing the content of their site. The most influential way of doing this is via backlinks. The idea behind backlinks is that links from websites to another site’s content increase the content’s search engine ranking. So, the number of backlinks from other sites is directly proportional to the content’s search engine ranking. However, the authority of the sites linking back to the content is also taken into consideration by search engines. For example, one backlink from Wikipedia will worth more than a hundred from unknown sites.

  2. Content marketing:

    This way businesses consistently engage their target market by creating and distributing content to them. For example, after SEO optimization of content on one’s site, they can place a lead magnet on that page, like a sign up for free e-book form. And through the visitor’s information, like the email address they get from the form, they can consistently engage them with their content. Also, they can achieve this by placing a follow button of their social media pages on the content and ask their visitors to follow them on social media for more updates. As you can see SEO optimization and social media marketing can complement content marketing.

  3. Search engine advertisement:

    If you wish to use this type of E marketing then you pay search engines to rank your content high on their SERP (Search Engine Result Page) for a given keyword.

  4. Influencer Marketing:

    Companies do meet influencers on different social media to help them promote their content. This should be done judiciously. For example, if you sell a fitness machine, it’s wise to meet an influential fitness trainer that’s popular for that on social media.

  5. Affiliate marketing:

    This way internet marketers make money by becoming publishers of different affiliate marketing programs of different businesses. The commissions earned can be on the basis of CPC, CPA, or CPM.

READ ALSO: LOW COST ADVERT STRATEGIES

IMPORTANCE OF E MARKETING

Let’s check out the importance of E marketing which makes it a worthwhile marketing strategy for business owners.

  1. Market penetration and market development:

    E marketing can be used to achieve these components of the ANSOFF matrix. So, this shows the importance of E marketing both to start-ups and big business owners.

  2. Increased product promotion:

    There is a popular mantra. That whatever that gets repeated, gets remembered and whatever that’s remembered gets done. So, repeated E marketing commercials on a platform subconsciously ingrain your product in the mind of the viewers.

  3. Increased focus on the target segment:

    For example, if you have an online shop that sells shoes. You can use paid social media marketing. And worth knowing is that social media algorithm brings the ads to people based on their previous reactions to products like that.

  4. Consumer preference for e-commerce:

    Because it’s cost and energy-efficient; most consumers prefer online purchases. So, firms must be online to catch these guys.

  5. Achievement of marketing goals:

    When companies set out for a marketing campaign; they set out their goals. And these goals could be to correct a market impression, increase sales and so many others. E-marketing helps them in achieving this goal.

  6. Increased relationship marketing:

    This is another importance of E-marketing. An example to illustrate this is if a company uses organic social media marketing; they will appreciate and respond to questions of their customers on their social media platforms. Hence fostering their relationship with them.

Conclusion

The implementation of E Marketing in any business is an undeniable addition to your strategies. Hope this article helped you realize that. Reach out on the comment section for additional info

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BUILDING A VISIONARY COMPANY: (7 methods + tips)

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building a visionary company

What is a VISIONARY COMPANY?

Looking at successful business organisations that have been from time immemorial, you would notice something quite outstanding about any visionary company. Most of them have risen above the competition, survived turbulence and economic crunch, while some have survived liquidation. Certain factors have stood them out among their equals and made them the crown jewel of whatever industry they belong to.

Uniquely some have lived over 100 years of existence and are still operating in more competitive advantage because of their vision. They have continued to remind themselves of the crucial distinction between the ‘core’ and ‘noncore’, between what should never change and what should be open for change, between what is truly sacred and what is not.

CHARACTERISTICS OF VISIONARY COMPANIES

Visionary companies have characterised themselves by the following

1. They have built a legacy and reputation

for themselves over time and have become so outstanding in their mode of operations, they have set themselves as a benchmark to other firms operating in the same industry and outside.

2. Core Idealogy

Visionary companies have learned to live by the core ideology laid down by the founders while harmonising changes to effectively pursue the purpose for which they were created. The objectives for which they were founded has not been altered but has rather become the driving force to achieving their set goals.

3. Visionary companies are pacesetters and trailblazers

most of them have chosen to be clock builders rather than time tellers. They set the pace and are seen as role models to their fellow industry rivals and have also distinguished themselves by following best practices in all their operations.

4. Adaptability to change

Visionary companies have survived through times both from within and outside the organisation and have grown overwhelmingly, they have also effectively managed to change having learnt from previous mistakes and mistakes of rivals, they have efficiently built on their core strength.

5. Big but clear goals

Visionary companies set big but achievable goal and objectives and have made such their perpetual driving force for success, they set goals that may seem rather unachievable to other firms, but have made more effort to achieving those big goals.

6. Employee Satisfaction not just customers

Visionary companies are a great place to work, they make sure their employees have the best working atmosphere, they prioritise employees Empowerment and continuous improvement, they also groom their employees on how to manage customers/clients and also live and carry on the company’s core ideology. They also hire the best hands to carry out certain duties.

HOW TO BECOME A VISIONARY COMPANY

Becoming a visionary company is not just what you write down on paper or engrave in the wall of the company. it’s not just a well-structured vision and mission statement, but it includes all of these and more. Becoming a visionary company means you have to engrave what the company was founded for and stand by in the hearts of whoever comes to it whether, it’s the customers, employees, investors, partners, etc.

Read Also: How Apple built their brand

You have to instil the doctrine that guides the company into the hearts of the employees and management, you have to make sure the company run through their bloodstream. That is what visionary companies are made up of.

Some ways to achieve that are

1. BUILD A VISION

For a company to become visionary, it must have a path for which it has chosen to toll. Often times, those visions are put in writing and made the VISION and MISSION statement. But beyond writing, the vision must be turned into strategies and objectives through which the vision would be achieved.

Asides the vision and mission statement, there is always that “big idea ” that led to the setting up of the company and that idea should continue to be built on, improved on and also opened to changes if need be. No matter the change in leadership or expansion of business, the core ideology of why you are in business must be maintained and followed meticulously.

Read Also: How Google built a visionary company

When building a vision, it has to be workable and it should be a driving force that can steer up positive actions and motivate any individual that comes in contact with the firm. The vision should be the life the firm lives every day.

2. SET OUT OBJECTIVES

In strategic planning vision are turned into objectives, this is actually the responsibility of the top echelons of the organisation. It is their sole duty to break down the vision into workable objectives. Assuming a firm’s vision is to be “the first choice in-flight service”, that is, for an air transport company. The top management will have to translate that vision into objectives like a brand of planes in their fleet, the in-flight services, route and destination network, customer service and airfares. All these put together will, if constantly worked by and improved on with time, will in the long run achieve the vision of that company. Furthermore, the means of communicating the objective should be understandable and achievable.

3. BUILD A TEAM

A vision can not be achieved by itself, it needs to be carried on by an individual with a drive to achieving that set goal. Having a team of like-minded people is pivotal to any visionary company’s progress. So while recruiting one must look out for distinct character traits that would harmonise with the firm’s vision or better still, hire people who are enthusiastic about the vision of the company.

From the top management to the least employee of the company should be made to understand that their efforts are very pivotal to the company’s growth and success and as such, should make sure those objectives are achieved. Having or building a corporate culture should be prioritised, a cult-like structure where the employees are indoctrinated about what actually drives the company.

Read Also: How to build a strong brand identity

The team should not be divergent in views but rather, harmonised while being allowed to express their personal views about certain key decisions.
The working environment should be work-friendly not so tensed and not allowing lethargy or lackadaisical attitude. High level of decorum and professional ethics should be enforced.

4. SET PRIORITIES

For any business to succeed or be termed visionary, it must have a driving force, something it gives utmost importance to. Of course most businesses are out to maximise profit, but to become visionary need something extra. It is OK to chase the numbers and increase favourable figures but, beyond that is the question “what will your company be known for”? Priorities should be either in excellent customer service delivery, product durability and quality, customer relationship, etc. Management should prioritise these in order to outshine its rivals.

5. TRY TO BE EXTRA-ORDINARY

Why some firms stand out among their equals, is because they did something rather extra. Going the extra mile to do something exceptional makes a business VISIONARY. Also learning over time, continuous improvement, and adaptability to environmental changes both within and outside the organisation helps to give that extra boost to be exceptional.

Read Also: The Coca-Cola Success secrets

In conclusion, being visionary doesn’t come so easy, it is doing the best in every day’s activity, staying true to the core ideology and constantly stimulate progress in all areas. The VISION of any business should be engraved in the heart of everyone that chooses to work there and should be carried on in the unforeseen future.

ADVICE TO BUSINESS OWNERS AND ENTREPRENEURS

You should be ready to set big goals.
Maintain the core ideology and stimulate progress constantly.
Steady continuous improvement should be the goal.
Build a sustainable culture that would live beyond the owners and founders.
Build a team with a visionary drive. 

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Customer relationship: Everything you need to know (+ free strategy plan)

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Customer relationships

Following recent events, you would notice that customers are starting to pick interest in what you sell, how you sell them, and what happens after you’ve sold it to them. And as a result, a lot of pressure is mounting on businesses to invest heavily in customer relationship management, which is in a bid to meet the increasing demand of customers.

So, in this article, we intend to provide you with everything you need to know about customer relationships, C.R management, and C.R strategy so you can stay ahead of the game.

However, the goal is not just to create a customer experience but an excellent one at that. This is because developing a strong customer relationship will bring about producing a loyal customer base. Also, it leads to the retention of these customers which will in turn increase sales and cash in-flow.

Considering these factors, businesses now have a shift in focus to implement customer relationships.

P.S: For clarity sakes, I will be substituting the word customers for clients subsequently when the need arises.

With these in mind, let’s dive in…

What is Customer Relationship?

Simply put, customer relationship is the way and manner in which a business creates, implements, and sustains relationships with their customers.

The rise and fall of a business is most times solely dependent on the close relationships you have with clients. 

This is believed because, when customers are the center of your business, you see your business through their eyes.

Strategically, I cannot overemphasize the place of giving listening ears to your customers. 

Moving on, there are several kinds of Customer Relationships.

They are;

Exchange Relationship:

Here, there is no significant relationship with the client. The only business between the customer and the business is the transactions that take place.

For instance, A small shop at the seaport doesn’t necessarily need to establish a personal relationship with its buyers. All they need is just to meet their needs at that point with cheerful faces and soothing service.

Read Also: 30 Most Searched Customer Service Skills (full details)

Personal Relationship:

Here, the customers can get help from the service representative while purchasing or after purchase.

However, most times it could be a dedicated personal relationship. In situations like this, the company or business assigns a service representative to a particular client.

But This kind of relationship usually comes up in the long run, especially with valuable customers.

Self-Service Relationship:

This kind of relationship is more sophisticated. It could also run on automation at times.

However, In the self-service relationship, clients are provided with every information they need to assist themselves.

Read also: Customer Satisfaction: 10 types of customers that will kill your business. (examples)

Analytical Relationship:

The Analytical relationship works by adopting techniques to analyze the data of the various clients. This is to aid C.R.M (Customer Relationship Management).

It also helps to give them ideas on how to serve them better while meeting their needs.

But, while Customer Service and Customer Relations might be similar, there is a clear difference between the two.

Customer service is basically anything a business/company offers to customers to enable their comfort during and after business transactions.

On the other hand, Customer Relations is more detailed and proactive because it goes beyond enabling their comfort.

It extends to acting on their present problems and lays down feasible strategies to prevent future reoccurrence. It also tries to create better quality services and customer experience.

Again, they are usually Long term. These relationships are built on trust which leads to a boost in the business and the growth of the customers as well.

Customer Relationship Management. (CRM)

Customer Relationship Management deals with not only getting customers but also creating a sustainable relationship with them.

It involves sales, growth of the business, promotion, and distribution of goods and services, and customer service.

Furthermore, It helps your business identify and reduce risks to the barest minimum, lay hold of business opportunities, and create feasible strategies to enhance sales.

Importance Of Customer Relationship Management.

  1. Customer relationship management helps you to discover quality information about your customer and identify their needs.
  2. It helps you see through their eyes while still keeping you ahead of your competitors.
  3. Customer relationship management helps you organize your business, monitor the customer’s engagement, sales, and run business analysis.
  4. It helps you grow, implement, and manage operations relating to customers through customer relationship management tools.

In addition, these tools are designed to give you comfort and flexibility while responding to your clients.

Read More: Download 500+ business plans for any business

Customer Relationship Strategy

To have an efficient customer relationship, there are several strategies to be implemented.

They include;

Identifying Your Profitable Customers:

Every business has it’s own prominent customers.

Before you begin to consider how to develop a good relationship with your customers, you should first be able to decipher the profitable ones.

You should also put into consideration how far you want your business to go in that regard.

Read Also: Customer Experience Strategy: (15 Tips To Improve +examples)

Letting your proposed value be a form of communication:

This is simply done by;

  • Be able to point out everything you gain by using your products or services.
  • Explain all that makes these gain valuable.
  • Be able to tell the major problem of your customers.
  • Link these discovered values to the customer’s problems.
  • Identify yourself as the best provider of this value.

Although, this should be simple clear, and concise.

Making  trade-offs that create customer values:

You can identify a super company by how well it creates trade-offs that competitors can never meet.

This is simply to find your unique selling point, update products, and services always, build an admirable brand image, and use it as an edge over other businesses.

Being sure your Customer Relationship fits Your Strategy:

Ensuring your business processes are always in sync with your customer relationship strategy simply means employing Relationship marketing.

This form of customer relationship strategy extends beyond the buyer-seller relationship. It basically puts the customers at the center of business strategy.

So, when setting strategies to execute a particular kind of customer relationship, ensure it fits into your business and the customers involved.

Being consistent in your Customer relationship strategies in the long run:

Without consistency, the impact of the customer relationship strategy will not be noticed.

It takes time and consistency for the beauty of these strategies to be seen and appreciated.

Finally, In all thy getting, achieve continuity!

Do you have contributions as regards this topic? Do well to let us know in the comment section.

This article covers everything you need to know about customer relationship management and strategy in a simple, clear, and well-detailed format.

 

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