According to Perreault, Cannon, and McCarthy (2014), branding is the use of a name, term, symbol, or design, or a combination of these, to identify a product. Branding can have a significant impact on consumers when they are making buying decisions. For example, can you think of a common brand of orange juice? Coffee? Soda? Sneakers? Cleaning product? Now, when you think of each of these, do you also picture their logo? The likelihood is high that you do, and this is due to their strategic branding.
• Describe Ikea's main products, target segments, and cause-related marketing activities.
• Explain how cause-related marketing impacts the company's image, positioning, and profitability.
• Evaluate this cause-related marketing strategy. Explain your rationale.
• Explain how the company's cause-related marketing might affect social change.
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First, the Swedish company produces home furnishings and home wares and was established in 1943 (). Specifically, IKEA exemplifies "..the largest furniture retailer in the world, that operates a chain of stores at multinational level. The company's spokesperson states that the sole objective of the firm is to make life better for people" (Terry-Armstrong, 2012, p. 7). Experts also suggest that Ikea also wants to cater to busy couples' and families' needs in the middle class socioeconomic demographics by adding "A pickup and delivery service for furniture items launched this year. And existing services, such as warranties (sofas are guaranteed for 10 years and kitchens for 25 years) and planning tools are being more heavily promoted" (ZMUDA, 2011, p. 15). Because of its low-price messaging, it also accommodates young adult demographics and even college students and recent graduates. Ikea also prides itself on innovative design and creativity. Studies validate how "Indeed, the retailer's huge stores are the de facto destination for college students and recent graduates looking to furnish dorm rooms and first apartments. Plenty of customers grew up with Ikea" (ZMUDA, 2011, p. 17). Thus, its brand loyalty is strong.
They also have products to fit with upper socioeconomic class consumers: "Yes, there are $3.99 rugs, but there are also $499 rugs. Yes, there's plenty of blond wood and sleek white furniture, but there's also leather, rich brown and basic black. The retailer is also stressing that its products are built to last" (ZMUDA, 2011, p. 16).
Besides, the niche market for DIY consumers is also something that Ikea's ...
Some research sources to guide an investigation of how IKEA employs cause-related marketing is briefly presented.