Organizations face several unfavorable obstacles to optimizing performance in today’s business environment. Regarding this, companies must concentrate on various techniques to ensure that they are enhancing their performance. According to Clauss et al. ( 2019), a sustainable competitive advantage is a basis for above-average long-term profitability. Low cost and distinctiveness are the two primary competitive advantages of a business. Fountaine, McCarthy, & Saleh (2019) asserts that the three general tactics for achieving above-average industry performance are cost leadership, differentiation, and concentration. These strategies are formed from the two primary types of competitive advantage and the spectrum of actions a corporation does to achieve them. The focused approach has two variations: cost focus and differentiation emphasis. Whether a company’s profitability is better or lower than the average for its industry relies on its performance relative to other companies in the same industry.
Porter’s Generic Strategies
Michael Porter has devised three broad strategies: cost leadership, concentration, and differentiation (Islami, Mustafa, Topuzovska & Latkovikj,2020).
Islami, Mustafa, Topuzovska & Latkovik (2020) asserts that by using the differentiation approach, the company strives to separate its product from others in the same category by presenting it differently. Since its inception, the oldest maker of carbonated soft drinks, Coca-Cola, has used a differentiation approach to set its products apart from its competitors (Ali & Anwar,2021). To maintain its unique system, the company allocates around 20% of its expenditures to advertising. To distinguish itself from its competitors, the company uses its logo as a distinguishing factor. The logo has remained constant since its conception in 1923. That has created a unique brand impression in customers’ eyes (Ali & Anwar,2021).
The company’s unique combination of marketing and advertising strategies contributes to its position as an industry leader among soft drink manufacturers. The beverage packaging is done in various bottle forms since one of the company’s strategies is to appeal to the notion that individuals feel slimmer if the bottle is shaped curvedly (Chu, 2020). The Coca-Cola Freestyle machine, which allows consumers to mix and match different flavors to produce a customized beverage, is another differentiation strategy the firm uses. Additionally, a soft spell technique is used to establish a distinction.
To portray its products as more inexpensive than its competitors, the company employs a cost leadership strategy and seeks to cut production costs (Chu, 2020). To do this, the company regulates its expenses properly. It manages the cash flow and operational expenditures of the firm. The company makes the investments because they seem profitable. Additionally, the company produces on a massive scale to cut operating expenses, which also helps the customers—consequently, both the company and the customer’s profit. Coca-Cola is also successful because its price does not rise as its popularity increases. The company’s constant price component has contributed to its cost leadership for many years.
Coca-Cola focuses on reducing costs and emphasizing differentiation. According to Štofová & Kopčáková (2020), the Focus strategy is based on serving niche markets, which target a particular set of customers and respond to their needs and preferences. The company’s approach to differentiating itself is to focus on the development of its form, size, and taste to fulfill the demands of its customers (Štofová, & Kopčáková, 2020). This strategy focuses on packaging modifications.
Coca-purpose, Cola’s which is to Refresh the World and Make a Difference, continues to guide the company as it adheres to its strategy to generate top-line growth and deliver a return. It identified five objectives that would help it survive the pandemic and put it on a growth trajectory: attract more customers, win market share, maintain sound system economics, expand its sway over all of its stakeholders, and position the firm for future success. On the way to Emerging Stronger, they served as the north star. And it did rebound stronger, with comparable sales, profitability, and cash production all outperforming pre-pandemic levels (Abbas, 2020).
As part of its portfolio optimization process, Coca-Cola performs significant research to focus on the brands that will continue to be the primary drivers of the Total Beverage Company’s strategy. It managed to rearrange its brand portfolio to support its growth objective and ensure that it would emerge triumphantly from the crisis. With the portfolio reduced from 400 to 200 master brands, global category teams can quickly identify the most lucrative investment opportunities. It seeks to build a scalable, well-balanced portfolio of global, regional, and local brands with the best potential to grow its client base, increase frequency, and stimulate system margin expansion. It believes it now has a stable portfolio of brands that will enable it to manage all drinking circumstances. It intends to increase these brands via targeted innovation and focused execution as necessary.
Human insights are the foundation of effective marketing: recognizing what the customer wants, making a product that tastes excellent, and incorporating the consumer’s passion points into the brand story (Bag, Wood, et al. 2020). Coca-operational Cola’s structure enables it to interact with individuals from diverse departments and areas to produce global solutions, allowing it to excel even more in its core competencies. As a result of the breadth of new agency alliances, the company believes it has never been in a better position to connect with its consumers end-to-end across non-traditional media (Tien, Vu,& Tien, 2019). That would result in more customized consumer interactions, attract new drinkers to our brands, and allow for stronger co-creation and effective marketing.
Without excellent execution, successful invention and marketing would not occur. Coca-revenue Cola’s growth management (RGM) program has undergone several enhancements (Tien, Vu,& Tien, 2019). Where are the revenues, for instance, among the priority categories? are significant commercial issues that the RGM addresses fundamentally. The quantity? Certain price range? Which station is this? Which client? Who is your primary rival?
RGM is primarily concerned with discovering revenue pools (where to play) and developing revenue development plans. It is a skill that changes depending on the company’s purpose, the changing environment, and the many stages of development that various markets are through (Singaram et al., 2019)
Cost leadership is Walmart Inc.’s business strategy in general. According to Michael Porter’s concept, cost leadership is a generic competitive strategy that focuses on getting low costs. Walmart can compete based on typical selling prices since it is a low-cost producer of retail services and related firm outputs. Low prices are a significant objective of the company’s pricing strategy (Greckhamer & Gur, 2021). they are also one of the retail industry’s primary selling features. The company uses a range of tactics to maintain low expenditures and, therefore, low prices. According to Greckhamer & Gur (2021), the company achieves low operating costs, for instance, by automation and accompanying technologies, as well as through decreasing human resource expenditures. The low levels of product differentiation that arise from cost leadership are the effect of cost leadership.
Amate & Deb (2021) assert that Walmart Inc.’s retail services are ubiquitous and, as a result, inadequately unique from retail services given by other firms in the industry, with a focus on low prices as a selling point. In addition, minimal market segmentation is required in this generic strategy (Lee, Hoehn‐Weiss, & Karim,2021). For example, the company offers retail services to every client in its target locations. That aligns with Walmart’s corporate aim and mission to dominate the retail sector worldwide. Lee, Hoehn‐Weiss, & Karim (2021), asserts that to implement its overall competitive strategy effectively, the company relies on management approaches, process efficiency, and other cost-cutting strategies such as aggressive expansion plans. To maintain low rates, the corporation is well-known for importing inexpensive goods in large numbers from countries such as China (Amawate, & Deb, 2021).
It is utilizing Walmart’s Intensive Strategies for Growth to achieve market penetration. Market penetration is Walmart’s principal strategy for aggressive growth. According to Igor Ansoff’s theory, this strategy boosts sales in the company’s existing markets (Amawate & Deb, 2021). These are the markets where the firm is currently functioning. By giving discounts and other incentives, Walmart Inc. improves the number of items and services it sells to its existing consumers. As a cost leader, the company, for instance, offers discounted wholesale bundles of several goods (Amawate & Deb, 2021). Walmart also increases its internet presence to expand customer access to its products.
Due to this access improvement, the company’s sales revenue is expanding. Increasing the company’s market share, notably in the United States and other key retail areas, is a strategic objective associated with this aggressive strategy. Walmart implements the strategy of cost leadership to achieve market penetration while capitalizing on the competitive advantage of low prices (Burbach, 2021).
Market growth. That approach’s secondary significance to Walmart Inc.’s business growth. Market development is the process of introducing a company’s existing goods and services to new markets. Using this aggressive growth strategy, Walmart, for example, opens new stores in countries where it does not already have a presence (Burbach, 2021). Developing the company’s presence in new markets is a connected strategic objective. An online presence for retail transactions is a component of this objective (Burbach, 2021). Low prices that attract people to Walmart stores in these new locations are an integral part of the generic competitive strategy for cost leadership, which supports the market development-intensive growth plan.
The creation of goods. Walmart Inc. uses product development as a low-cost approach to growing its retail operations. According to Maulana, Munawar, & Nurjanah (2019), product development comprises creating and distributing new products inside the company’s existing markets. In this instance, Walmart has only made a modest investment in developing new items. The corporation focuses its efforts on marketing and sales, the cornerstones of the retail sector (Neebe,2020). However, this rigorous growth approach accomplishes Walmart’s strategic objective of expanding research and development (R&D) expenditures to offer new services or improve existing items (Neebe, 2020). According to the general cost leadership strategy, product development must focus on generating new goods that do not need costly procedures.
Diversification. To adopt this aggressive expansion plan, the firm must provide entirely new items in new markets, which are often marketplaces for industries or areas in which it does not already compete. According to Mounika, Sahithi, et al. 2019, Walmart Inc. joined the media technology and content distribution business. According to Suh, Lee, & Jung (2022), the intense growth strategy has as one of its strategic objectives the search for and acquisition of firms that can incorporate into Walmart’s current operations, such as via the company’s e-commerce website (Garcia, & Red, 2020). These purchases must be highly efficient and support low-cost operations in line with the operations management strategy of Walmart Inc., which conforms to the general competitive process of cost leadership. Despite its prevalence in the market, diversification is still a low-cost method for developing the firm (Suh, Lee, & Jung, 2022). Walmart Inc. has a low rate of diversification due to its retail-centric business model.
Based on the two organizations, Coca-Cola and Walmart inc, we have seen how organizations can adopt different strategies to enhance their performance. You will concur with me that the two organizations are among the top organizations in the world. They have branches in multiple countries in the world as a whole. Adopting porter’s generic strategies, the cost, differentiation, and focus can make a company thrive to unlimited maximal (Shad, Lai, et al. 2019). That is most especially when backed up with grand strategies. Even though there are multiple ways of adopting these strategies, it is clear that any organization’s point of focus is boosting its entire performance and growth.
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