The following marketing plan has been carefully organized to bring the world of fashion and design to a new dimension that will revolutionize the idea of wearing heels. The “Chantelle” shoes have created a new concept that will help women accommodate themselves for any situation at any place and time.
Needs Being Met
The retractable heel with its unique characteristic will provide women comfort and style while remaining fashionable at the same time. We believe that this new evolution, with its original features is what women NEED. The “Chantelle” is like having two shoes in one, they are equipped with retractable heels that can be adjusted into different heights when needed, switching from formal to casual look at any time and place, making it convenient for any situation.
Our target market will be women of the labour force as the “Chantelle” introduces different prices ranging from $150 to $300, reachable for women aged 20 to 35, of an average income of 41000$ which consists of 61.1% of the women labour population in Canada. Having 1,399,816 million targeted women we’re estimating a minimum gross profit of 4,000,000$ annually in respect of 20,000 heels sold at minimum price for a first year.
The recent economic downturn has made people more cautious and more determined to repay their previous debts earned through negligent spending. As this recent economic change has affected many successful companies, some have merely been touched by it. In Susan Ward’s review on “The Best Business Opportunities of 2012”, “some people are still willing to spend on luxury brand products such as handbags, scarves and shoes”, (Ward, 2012). Chantelle shoes will have a price range from 150$ to 300$ which is affordable for our target market and by buying our product they are basically getting two shoes for the price of one which is a very attractive deal.
Chantelle Shoes are all about its retractable heels. We will be using a lightweight but resistant material called Titanium. There is a unique way that we use to design this retractable heel, since the whole mechanism consists of a mechanical technology and without any electronic or chemical part which in consequence, lead us to not worry about competition coming with a better retractable heel. The mechanism is inspired by an umbrella’s operating system: with a simple push of a button, the next level of the heel is disengaged, and locked when the button is released. We will ensure durability and reliability which are two important attributes for its making.
Women who see themselves as adventurers, ready for the day to day’s challenges will respond strongly to The “Chantelle” brand shoes as it comes in different fashionable design. People define themselves with favorite brands. Dressing up is now a way of self expression. The product’s uniqueness will stand out from other brands. In addition, the fact that the Chantelle shoes are all made in Canada will have a very positive impact in the market, as many Canadians will identify their national pride with our Canadian brand, in consequence the brand will be a success in our target regions.
Law and order is what our society is based on. However there are groups and individuals with authority that influence organizations or companies. For instance, the navy’s regulations, women are required to have two pairs of basic black heels for the formal dinner dress uniform () “A person can be fired because the company doesn’t like your shoes,” explains Robert D. Lipman, who manages the New York employment firm Lipman & Plesur, LLP. In a formal environment such as banks and insurance companies implement that there dress codes are necessary in order to make a good impression on their clients (Idleman & McKitirick, 1975).
In addition, cancer, the topic we all avoid. The word alone is scary, the one disease we never want to be diagnosed with. In Canada 30.4 per 100,000 women die of Breast cancer every year. Chantelle Ltd is not just a brand, we want to be the voice of all women, we want to make a change and help the Canadian Breast Cancer foundation to raise more money to help women of all ages with cancer (Idleman & McKitirick, 1975).
Our product will be marketed in all the major Canadian cities, one concern of ours is that due to Canadian weather factors, the value of product is slightly decreased because snow on the ground generally desuades people from wearing high heels. The winters in Canada, except on the far East/West coasts are quite extreme and long, therefore our marketing efforts will have to be limited to the times when conditions are not so harsh. A huge positive for our product is the changing demographic in the work force. More and more women are entering the corporate work force and salaries are also rising, meaning more buying power for our target customers.
Chantelle Shoes will target medium to large populations located in Toronto and Montreal. These cities have been targeted due to their size and their cultural qualities, in which fashion is emphasized. We’re going to be looking at the more densely populated areas, such as downtown, in which not only is the fashion culture more apparent but due to the dense population, word of mouth will spread as well as Chantelle shoes being worn around the city. More rural areas are not as practical as people often drive when they want to move around, taking away from one of Chantelle’s greatest attributes which is its retractable heel when walking from place to place. Women are restrained by their heels. As for age, this product ranges from the working woman to the everyday student in university, who wants to look good and go to social gatherings. Whether it be businesswomen on their lunch break, or heading back home, or a group of girls going out, or a middle-aged lady looking good and trying to get around, it can be said that this shoe will sell. It will sell to our target demographic market, which ranges from ages 20 to 35. However, we are also looking at the frontiers. The more general range is around 20 to 50, as these will be the people who can most likely afford it, and is most practical to their lives. Essentially, we are looking big populations, in cities which are financially successful that are based in urban environments for the average working lady ad all other women in city life that want to look great in heels and still be able to get around (Drolet, 2010)
Segmentation, Targeting, and Positioning
We will be targeting Montreal to start, and will expand Toronto afterward, which has a population of, respectively, 3 908 7231 and 5, 583, 0641 residents. Those are the most distinguishable urban cities in terms of fashion.
Only women from 21 to 50 will represent our main target. Chantelle Shoes refuses to sensibilise younger girls to the wear of heels, as it does not only give a casual look, but also brings a touch of sensuality and sex symbolism. This segment counts to approximately 500,000 women, 13% of the total population.
Over the years, women have increasingly become more involved in today’s world. Women in the workplace and social gatherings for example have sustainably risen and we believe our retractable heels will be the right solution for their discomfort. About 430,000 women are in Montreal’s labour force.
Primary and Secondary Data
On the “statistics Canada” site, we have a clear idea of the potential size market for our product. We’re focusing on the women’s labor force which consists of approximately 61.1% of the total working population aged from 20 to 40 years old. We want to target the women working class and we could have a good idea of the potential market with the numbers represented on this site.
We believe that the best source of information to set up our market potential size would be the statistics Canada site for many reasons. We could use this data to have an idea of how many people we could target and to estimate the potential sales we could make for our first year. It will give us an idea to see how many people would be interested in this particular product. On the statistics Canada site, we have numbers that could help us do the evaluation and we have those information on the specific category that we are trying to target, which are employed women aged between 20 to 40.The fact that we could see approximately how much this category of labor force makes will equally help us set up a reasonable price for our product because we want our product to be affordable for our clientele. We have very distinctive numbers on this site which we believe could help us set a clear potential market size.
Competition Figures: Michael Kors
By looking at what the competition is offering, we can determine the potential market size and share in the industry. If we are to take a portion of the market, we need to set our bjectives in par with what the competition is offering. We take for instance Michael Kors, a popular brand among women. Even if they are based in the US and selling not only shoes, but also other accessories, they can clearly give us an idea of how we can participate in this ever-changing women environment. Michael Kors revenues grazes the billion* per year mark. We can see there is a lot of potential in this market. Even multi-sex stores have their women section occupying 80% of the space. It is a fact that women love to shop for several reasons, indeed they do not even need a reason to do so! We are safely entering a never-saturating market (Michael Kors Company profile, 2012).
We questioned 15 young women in the labor force aged from 21 to 35 about their shoe purchasing behavior and how they feel about high heels. First, we noticed the significant importance of shoes for women, since each woman could own an average of 10 to 40 pairs of shoes from a range of 100-300$. We also noticed that 80% (12/15) of these women felt restricted from a particular activity before or after work because they didn’t have the appropriate shoes for such activities that require a lot of walking. Most of these women still wore heels even if their jobs didn’t require the need too and 80% of them stated that they look for both look and comfort when they want to buy shoes. More than half of the respondents stated that they prefer to buy “flat” shoes for. It is much more practical and comfortable for a lot of them have had previously felt the need to take off their shoes because of uncomfortable heels. When asked if they would be interested in an innovative product like “chantelle” shoes, all 15 respondents were very much interested by the concept. They have perceived our product’s value from $100 to $300, which will be very useful for setting its price.
These responses clearly demonstrate the importance for women to feel not only sexy but comfortable at the same time. It is important for these women to adapt their shoes to their lifestyle and not the other way around. After seeing the results of this survey, we clearly believe that this new product could revolutionize the idea of wearing heels and boost the high heel industry.
Shoes vary so much in style that they can change the entire look of an outfit. In Yve Goodwin’s article “How to match shoes to an outfit of 2012” she mentions that “Matching the best shoe style to an outfit can be a very frustrating and annoying experience for many women. Classic simplicity is usually the best approach to take when looking for fashion to suit every silhouette and personal style”. (Goodwin, 2012). Our company’s name is “Chantelle” and we focus on the importance of comfort, safety and style of shoes for women. They are efficient and fashionable shoes created to help women accommodate themselves to any situation at any place and time. We carefully designed the perfect shoes that will fulfill women’s needs for their daily routine, they can be worn for a variety of occasions such as going work, even to go clubbing, or simply to having a walk on the park. Whether it’s a very casual outfit or an elegant dress that business women wear to go to work, “Chantelle” shoes match with any outfit. These shoes are perfect for business women to wear in those important meetings at work. When they get tired of wearing heels all day and they want to switch to flat heel shoes, it is possible now with Chantelle shoes. There’s no need to carry two pairs of shoes anymore as the “Chantelle” shoes are equipped with a retractable heels that can be adjusted into different heights when needed. It’s like having two shoes in one, switching from formal to casual look at any time and place, making it convenient for every situation. It’s very simple and easy to change the height of the heels without changing shoes, by pushing the buttons on the heel the height of the heels will change. In addition, Chantelle shoes are offered in four different heights of heels starting with “flats” with a heel height of 0.25 inches, “low-heels” with a height heel of 2.5 inches (6.4 cm), “mid-heels” between 2.5 and 3.5 inches (6.3 and 8.9 cm) and “high-heels” with a heel height of 3.5 and 4.5 inches (8.9cm and 10.4cm). These shoes come in a variety of materials such as, synthetic, leather, suede and textile.
The sole is made of synthetic or rubber materials and the retractable heel has strong and low-weighted Titanium to make each of these shoes long lasting and resistant. We offer a wide variety of designs and different colors making each shoe a unique masterpiece.
Since we are launching a unique product, we will be setting its price based on the value our target market perceives it. We are using this strategy because, after analysing our primary data, we realized our product is of high value due to its unique and convenient feature. Most women valued our retractable heels’ shoes from $150 to a maximum of $300, which is then our price ceiling. This price range easily covers our production costs thus works in our favor. We also noticed that most women, surprisingly, own between 10 and 40 pairs of shoes. This information tells us that we cannot use a price skimming strategy on women shoes, because the same individual will be buying our shoes months after months. On the other hand, we can neither set our price below the perceived value because we want to create an image for Chantelle being a high-end fashionable brand. A low cost will simply devalue it. Of course, in order to maintain that first sight image, we actually need to deliver that perceived value. The quality of shoes is very important to women because everyone wants the things they’re spending their hard earned money on to last. Longevity is key, which is why the ever-famous shoe designer Christian Louboutin is so successful. His shoes are top quality and therefore he has the freedom to charge sums ranging from $500 to multiple thousands.
The demand for heels, in general, is elastic, meaning that if a product if priced too high, the demand will go down, and if the product is priced too low, more people will be buying them. The demand for our product will be inelastic, because it is a one of its kind, meaning consumers will not have the option to search out other retailers. Considering our product is an innovative twist on the traditional high heel, we can assume the demand will be high due to the fine balance of comfort and fashion.
Along with the shoe, we will be bundling a warranty for the high heel. We are so confident about our heels’ quality that this warranty will be at no extra cost. Accidents and defect on site happen, and consumers need to know we have them covered. From time to time, we will be running seasonal promotions. For example, during summer, we will reduce our boots’ prices and during winter, our shoes’ prices. Again, this promotion won’t be more than 20% off to keep our prestigious image.
Indirect Vertical Marketing Channel
Chantelle Shoes will wisely use an Indirect Marketing Channel, more precisely a Vertical Marketing Channel (VMS). This decision is based on the facts that we want to minimize any ntermediaries’ conflicts, and we need to control the overall distribution management to accurately deliver the product to the consumer. Then, two main alternatives are present. We first explore the Corporate VMS, from which we will have our own factory and thus avoid any dependency on a third party. This will however engender a lot more fixed and variable costs, and a bigger start up investment. Then, we will explore the Contractual VMS, from which a partnership with a renowned manufacturer will reduce our start up investments, while keeping the overall distribution process organized. It is important to have a local manufacturer to avoid useless transportation costs. In order to minimize investment risks, we opt with the Contractual VMS.
Intermediaries: Retailer Store and Resellers
Chantelle Shoes will locate its store in Montreal’s heart, downtown, where a high traffic of students and labour women are. They are walking and shopping, making it a hobby, if not some sort of therapy, just like chocolate. Our store will thus be highly illuminated and distinguishable, beautifully designed from the inside out in order to “trap” those women. Those women, permanently seeking the perfect pair of shoes, will be lost in our wide range of assortments, ready to take a shot out of their Visa card to catch with tomorrow’s shoes fashion. To get the most out of this heavy foot traffic, our trained employees will suggest, help and guide them to the perfect pair of shoes corresponding to their criteria.
Chantelle Shoes’ retractable heels’ license will be sold to renowned designers, such as Louis Vitton, Micheal Kors, Prada, Blueberry and Gucci and sold at their retailer store or website. Therefore, these resellers will exclusively distribute our high-end gam (200$-300$). Our lower gam will selectively be distributed at Globo, Sears and LaBaie.
We will also showcase our shoes through our personal website, i.e. www.chantelle.com, but without selling them there, to avoid any disintermediation with our resellers. Thus, users will be able to find the latest shoes, all relevant information about the retractable heels, how to contact us, how to maintain the heels, etc, but only links to our resellers website.
No matter how useful our product is, it will remain in the dark until we spotlight it. Our marketing team will be launching two waves of ads across the city, the first being persuasive and the second, informative.
The objective of the first wave of ad is to persuade our target market that retractable heels can be worn anywhere, anytime. Since we want to start with minimal start up investment, we will allocate a reasonable budget, just enough to spread the word with effective media types. Our first form of advertising, which is probably the cheapest one, is through the internet. We will be running humoristic ads on social sites such as Facebook to attract younger markets, like students. Their strong Ad Platform allows us to precisely target women from age 21 to 25. The advantage about using social sites is that members will be able to Share our ad, whether for its humour touch or for the convenience the product brings. We will also place a lot of outdoor banners wisely near downtown’s offices to attract labour women from age 2 to 35.
All these ads will be projecting the same message: Chantelle Shoes can be worn anywhere, anytime. An example of ad would be a banner in women’s bathroom, which will be showing a lady wearing Chantelle Shoes in the bus, with a heel in and a heel out. The text in it would say “I wear my heels in the bus”. Another example would be a lady in her bed, and the message would say “I wear my heels in bed”, giving some humour to the comfort the heels. Finally, we will promote our more expensive selection in renowned fashion magazines such as “Elle magazine”. This form of ad targets directly older women from age 36 to 45, looking to be the firsts to own the next unique fashion designs. Messages for this group would be “I wear my heels at the Opera” or “I wear my heels in marriages”.
Some banners will also inform that Chantelle Shoes are cause-related with Breast Cancer Organizations by donating 1% of every shoe sold. Also, they will be engaging women by encouraging them to text us where they are actually wearing their Chantelle Shoes. By doing so, they will automatically be charged 1$ for donation. Those texts will then be publicly (anonymously) displayed in our store and our site.
When expanding, our stores will be based on different textures to remind that Chantelle Shoes are not only convenient, but also fashionable. For example, a first store will be focused on stainless texture, while a second one, on leather and a third one, on wood. This trend will also make people want to visit and shop in different Chantelle stores, putting them in different perspectives to buy. As in any message given through ads, there will be noises coming from competition or third parties trying to hurt our sales and image. Chantelle shoes are a unique concept and we are confident that our strong and reliable brand will not easily be affected.