Sample Marketing Plan
Edibles is a brand of sustainable cutlery solutions that you can EAT. Forks, spoons, cups, straws, and plates that are biodegradable and truly edible! It is a sustainable and delicious alternative to disposable cutleries and cups destined for the landfill. All Edibles products are 100% vegan, gluten-free and made with organic ingredients. We use fun flavour combinations in our products, and we offer people eating and drinking experiences a whole lot more exciting and interesting than before.
With Edibles, we are creating a plastic-free revolution!
Our Competitors & Price/Quality Positioning
In Canadian market, Edibles currently do not have any direct competitors, because Edibles is the only company that sells edible cutleries. However, in terms of eco-friendly characteristics, the companies will face tight competition from other suppliers who offer disposable cutlery made from corn starch or PLA plastic. Moreover, although Edibles aims to be introduced as the new replacement to all traditional single-use plastic cutlery seller, the products are still relatively new to the general market. Therefore, the competition from traditional plastic merchants would remain brutally aggressive, especially in terms of prices. The following table will compare prices and consumer ratings of 5 existing competitors in Canadian market:
|Brand Name||Asking Price||Original Packing Size (Unit)||Price per item||Average Rating||Number of Reviews||Source of Data|
We are planning to set our prices above the average, but not the highest. The reason is that we use high-quality ingredients for production while other companies do not use as they are not edible. However, we want to keep our prices affordable to attract more consumers and businesses to give our products a try.
Our Target Market
Our target market is all people and businesses who care about our planet and environment. We have segmented our target market based on their needs, traits, lifestyle, etc. to distinguish and separate our marketing strategies and mixes.
According to our segmentation strategy, details about our target market audience and their characteristics can be described as follows:
We will be targeting people from all genders, all ages and all family status in Canada. Particularly, people who love eating outside, partying outside, who take lunches or dinners to work will be in our target. Also, food business owners, restaurants, cafes will be included in the first target audience to approach. We will start with Canadian market, and after we settle in this market, we are planning to launch in the US, and South American countries, respectively.
Since our products will be slightly higher in price compared to single-use, cheap plastic cutleries, we will not be targeting the lowest income level of society. People from the middle-income level and also high-end people will be our target.
Eco-friendly and environmentalist people would be very much interested in our cutlery solutions. They are aware of damages and harms caused by plastics on our environment, oceans, and other habitats. They would be interested in turning our planet to a better and cleaner place.
The lifestyle we will be targeting in the market will be people who use single-use cutlery and utensils in their daily life for lunch out and/or parties.
Benefits offered to the target market
Edibles cutlery solutions will not only be eco-friendly but also healthy and tasty. The mix of our product will be from organic ingredients. It will be low in calories and carbs.
Since our products will be used for holding meals and food, we will make sure that the mixture of our product will be firm enough to allow consumers to comfortably use them with every type of food. Besides, any of our products will not react with food, in particular, our edible straws will not react with any liquid and/or beverage and so will not change the taste of any food or beverage in which they are used.
We are committed to making our products tasty for our customers. We want our customers to enjoy the taste of our edible cutlery sets when enjoying the satisfaction of being an eco-friendly person every time they use our products. We are planning to diversify our products with different tastes, especially one set will be produced in a taste that kids will enjoy.
Why did we choose this market?
We are a team of dedicated people who care about the environment and want to preserve the planet. We understand that plastic pollution is one of the biggest threats for the next generations. It adversely affects not only the future of humans, but also the future of animals and wildlife habitats too.
There are countries that banned single-use plastics. Very recently, France introduced a new policy that bans single-use, disposable cutlery, utensils, cups and plates in 2019.
We are a Canadian company; our government is always a pioneer in the world in leading other countries to create a better planet. We appreciate this approach of our government and we want to make Canadians pioneers in stopping using plastics in their daily life and being a role model to other countries.
Our Positioning Strategy
Our positioning strategy is as follows: We want our customers to have perception on our products as a revolution against plastics. We will strongly aim to place Edibles in minds of consumers with sustainability and eco-friendliness.
Our positioning statement is “Edibles is a sustainable cutlery solution that provides you a more convenient and eco-friendly way to enjoy your meal!”
Our Brand Name & Logo
Our brand name is Edibles. Our logo is below:
When we were in the process of deciding our brand name, we have taken into account the following criteria:
We wanted it suggests something about the type of products we brand. Edibles offer cutleries, cups, straws and plates that we can eat, so naming our brand as “Edibles” made sense for us according to this criterion.
We wanted it to be easy to pronounce, recognize, and remember. Edibles is very easy to remember and pronounce. We designed our logo in a way to involve a fork (see the first E in the logo), so that it will be recognizable for consumers too.
We wanted it to be extendable; that is, not tied too closely to one product. We want to expand the products we offer under Edibles brand to utensils and other kitchenware in the future. For this reason, we have avoided to name it to run through the people’s minds just cutlery. When we want to produce other kitchenware products under our brand, Edibles will be ready to cover all since it is not tied to only cutlery.
We wanted it to be pronounceable in many languages. Before we set our brand name as “Edibles”, we wanted to make sure that it is pronounceable in as many languages as possible. We have used different online platforms, like Rebrandly, Namecheckr, etc., and nothing has been raised in those websites. Also, since we have people from different countries in our team, namely from Turkey, Colombia, Vietnam and Philippines, we have checked with our team members to see if they will raise any concern to name “Edibles” too. None of our team members shared any issue on this.
We wanted it to be capable of registration and protection as a trademark. Trademark availability was one of the most important criteria for us, we have done our intellectual property research in a more detailed way, please see section VI of this plan below.
We have searched for the trademark availability as seen below.
We have come across “Edible” and “Edibles” in the name of some brands, but all of them are either abandoned brands or the business underlying those brands were unrelated or unsimilar to cutlery business. The followings are some of the examples we came across in our trademark search:
- Edibles: A brand for chocolate, chocolate sauce, baked goods company.
- Incredible Edibles: A brand for meats and processed foods, staple foods.
- Edible Compliments: A brand for moulds for food servings. This brand’s business seemed somewhat close to our idea, but CIPO status of this brand is “abandoned”, therefore we did not put concern on it.
Overall, Edibles, as a brand name, is available for use.
4P Marketing Strategy
The idea of making edible utensils is not new, some technology has already been developed and proven to be viable in other parts of the world, but Canada has yet to see any advancement in this field. The biggest and most successful attempt to date to create a business out of edible cutlery is Bakeys. This Indian manufacturer could be said to be the pioneer in this industry; their method is simple and effective: mainly sorghum mixed with rice and wheat, which is later made it into a dough, and then shaped and baked. Our product would follow a similar line of production.
According to the technologies and techniques available the best alternative to make edible, but resistant cutlery, as of now is to use a mix of millets and cereals. Our product will be a mix of millets, sorghum, oats, rice, and wheat, adding natural flavors, molded and baked, like a regular biscuit. These inputs are very easy to find and obtain across North America; it was reported that 8 million acres of sorghum were planted in the United States during 2015, as a result of a growing demand for this ancient grain. Taking this into consideration and thanks to the free trade agreements between countries like the NAFTA or the soon to be ratified USMCA, there shouldn’t be any major problems importing sorghum and rice from United States; the other cereal crops, such as wheat, oats (and even corn) can be obtained from the Canadian market (Klinck, 2015).
The product is edible cutlery, it comes in the regular and standard set of spoons, forks, and knives, but we also offer other types of complementary utensils such as plates, cups, and straws, made from the same material. The following table summarizes the main feature:
|1. Edible||The ingredients to make our product are a hundred percent natural; therefore edible. A mix of millets, sorghum, oats, rice, and wheat, plus natural flavors; molded in different shapes such as spoons, forks, knives, cups, plates and straws and then baked, it is just like a regular biscuit.|
|2. Resistant||The ingredients are complex carbohydrates, and posses though qualities, especially the likes of sorghum; thus, making the product when baked, hard, firm and resistant to liquids. They don’t turn soggy right away, and even when put in hot liquids or hot water, they don’t dissolve nor fall off. Another benefit associated with this is thanks to the lack of water in the product (or fat), allowing it to be stored for long periods, without the help of preservatives.|
|3. Biodegradable||It is a natural product, and as mentioned before, pretty much like a hard biscuit, so in the case of not being consumed, they can degrade naturally in the environment in just a few days. They do not require any specific procedures to degrade, such as high heat, or specialized facilities like other alternatives of regular plastic do (e.g. bioplastic cutlery made from corn components).|
|4. Eco-friendly||It is the most eco-friendly alternative to regular plastic available in the market. There are tons of other manufacturers trying to crack the code on how to develop a product able to replace the regular plastic. Bioplastic seems to be the best alternative, but in truth, it still has to make an impact in the market, mainly because it is still very expensive to produce; therefore, the price is up to 4 times higher than regular plastic. Edible utensils such as these can be cheaper than those other alternatives thanks to the inputs needed, and if produced in significant volumes it can reduce production cost even more, which can translate at a cheaper price, eventually in the future.|
|5. Healthy and Nutritious||There are no preservatives added, no chemicals, nor fats; it is one hundred percent natural flours, a bit of water, shaped and baked. The ingredients are complex carbohydrates, which are considered the “good carbs” from the family, as they provide vitamins, minerals, and fiber, very important elements in the health of an individual (Hurd, 2018). For example, millets are also known as ancient grain or “Nutri-cereals” because it is “high on fiber and protein and rich in B vitamins, phosphorus, manganese and may benefit people suffering from arthritis, inflammation, PMS and poor bone health” (Skolnik, 2019). Other nutritional sources argue that millets are “rich in minerals like calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, and selenium as well as essential vitamins like folate, pantothenic acid, niacin, riboflavin, and Vitamins B6, C, E, and K” (Schär, 2018).|
|6. Tasty and comes in different flavours||It tastes like a biscuit if plain, but natural flavors can be added; salt and paper, to make salty cutlery, or sugar to make it sweet, vanilla, lemon, cinnamon, whatever comes to mind, the possibilities are endless.|
|7. Eco-friendly packaging||The most efficient way of selling cutlery is in packs. We decided to sell a pack containing 200 units of utensils. The packaging must be eco-friendly as well as the product and the most effective way of doing it is using paper packaging (bags), that go along with the sustainable model.|
The base of our product strategy is differentiation; there are no other products like ours in the market, at least not in Canada yet. Edible cutlery is such a new, revolutionary and innovative alternative to the use of regular plastic, and a direct attempt to reduce the big problem of plastic pollution. Just the product itself, with all the challenges that might represent, is unique; the concept breaks paradigms and takes us to see things from a different perspective, a different approach, thinking outside the box. The benefits, when compared to the competitors, are clear; other than edible, it is biodegradable (it takes just a few days and don’t require special requirements), one hundred percent natural, which make it the most eco-friendly alternative out there; the ingredients and components are carefully selected, to make it resistant (offering similar properties than regular plastic and bioplastic ones), cheaper, healthier and nutritious. The value added is simply too big, and at the end of the day the product works in favor of a greater good, not saying other alternatives don’t, but we do it in the most efficient and effective way possible.
We, as a team, have decided on using the market-penetration pricing strategy by setting a low price to lure the loyal customers of the existing indirect competition into trying Edibles cutlery. We will announce an introductory price of $20 for a pack of 200 pieces which would sell at $0.10 per piece. This price is at the same level as the lowest-end indirect competitors and will still allow us a mark-up to cover expenses. Once we have penetrated the market by creating brand awareness and making it known that Edibles offers them the value that none of the other eco-friendly cutlery can, we can raise the price to $0.18 per piece which is above average and could keep out direct competition from entering the edible cutlery industry.
|Brand Name||Asking Price||Original Packing Size (Unit)||Price per item|
|Ecovita||CAD 127.66||380||CAD 0.34|
|Stack Man||CAD 62.93||360||CAD 0.17|
|Delihom||CAD 59.99||400||CAD 0.15|
|VIMOV||CAD 20.99||200||CAD 0.105|
|Juvale||CAD 18.56||180||CAD 0.103|
|Edibles||CAD 20.00||200||CAD 0.10|
We know that we can easily price Edibles at the same level as the most expensive indirect competitor Ecovita because our products are superior, unique, and provides more value as they are edible. But since we strongly believe in sustainability, we choose to set our prices within reach of the majority so that everyone can contribute to preserving the environment by replacing single-use plastics with Edibles.
Our distribution strategy is aimed to make Edibles products conveniently available for customers. Therefore, our products will be available on both online and offline vendors to maximize market share, brand recognition, and products’ distribution coverage.
We will be targeting in partnership with restaurants, coffee shops, and event planners/caterers in Canada in order to widen our market share and spread our eco-friendly message further to customers. Dealerships will be made with event planners like Daniel et Daniel, Eatertainment (Toronto, Ontario), A Timeless Celebration, Eventure Group (Montreal, Quebec), etc.
Most of our competitors’ products are only available on online platforms like Amazon; that is why we decided that creating a partnership with offline vendors in Canada will be an advantage for Edibles and a more accessible solution to reach a wide range of customers. Partnership with Walmart, Costco, and The Home Depot will be prioritized. These vendors will keep an inventory of Edibles products and they will be in charge of demonstrating the products to buyers, sales, and customer services.
Lastly, Edibles will be available via Amazon, which is the most convenient platform to reach new customers and make our products accessible to customers from any region of Canada.
Advertising objectives. To promote our product, we will be using both informative and persuasive advertising. We need to use informative advertising to tell the target market about a new product that they could use and also eat I place of compostable cutlery. We have to announce which flavour options they could choose from. This is vital for Edibles because we need to build awareness of what edible cutlery is and its benefits. It is also important to use persuasive advertising because some of the customers could be too used to purchasing compostable cutlery and the restaurant businesses who are also our target could have partnerships with suppliers. We need to build brand preference and encourage them to switch to Edibles.
Key message. The key message for our advertising strategy would be that Edibles provides the most value among all eco-friendly cutlery since it not only contributes to the environment but is also tasty and nutritious which makes for a great party.
Tagline. Truly all you can eat.
Direct and Digital Marketing – Edibles needs to be advertised through social media and Google ads because part of our sales would be from individual consumers. Paid social media ads can target specific demographics as well as psychographics. With digital marketing, we can easily target our market by age range, gender, location, as well as all their interests based on if they follow eco-friendly pages on social media and if they have been searching eco-friendly keywords on Google. We will target them with ads that graphically look appealing to our environmentalist market and highlight in the post our competitive advantage which is tasty and sustainable as well as our introductory price.
Personal Selling – To target businesses, we need to do personal selling with restaurants and cafes. We need a business development team to set appointments with the top fast-food chains such as Popeye’s and Chipotle as well as all the major restaurants and cafes in Toronto. The advantage of using personal selling is that our team can discuss with the decision-makers of the businesses, why they should partner with Edibles instead of their current suppliers. This way, we can have a one-on-one meeting with them to listen to their needs, address their concerns with our products, to build a lasting relationship and create a strong foundation for the partnerships.
Public Relations – Building trust is best done through public relations because this shows a lot more authenticity and is more believable than traditional advertising. With our new product, consumers could feel like it isn’t worth it to buy because it is something new. But if a credible news source mentions our brand name, it is more likely for the market to form trust for our brand. To be more specific, we will be working with a PR agency to organize a press launch and invite credible news sources such as lifestyle magazine Canadian Living as well as well-known websites. We will invite Emma Watson to host the event at a discounted rate since she is passionate about promoting saving the environment. We will also invite prospective business clients such as restaurant owners to the launch. The event will be held at The Bram and Bluma Appel Salon at Toronto’s Reference Library. We will be requesting this venue sponsorship from the City of Toronto for the launch of the most eco-friendly cutlery in Canada.
All three promotional tools will work hand-in-hand in building brand name familiarity, differentiation, and positioning in our customers’ minds. They will provide information on Edibles core values and superiority of our products giving our target market a reason to switch to using Edibles instead of compostable. Personal selling and press launch will create relationships with our business prospects and the magazine and website PR creates credibility with our individual consumer market. Digital marketing will be the tool to target our market demographic of individual consumers to inform and convert them to using Edibles.
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