1. report is to examine and understand how

1.     
Executive
Summary

The aim of producing this report is to examine and
understand how Vans make their business successful by choosing the right marketing
targets, marketing environments as well as the marketing mix. We decided to
choose Vans for our assignment as it is a well-known shoe brand among the
teenagers and even adults today. Just by walking in a shopping mall nowadays,
more than 5 out of 10 teenagers or adults are wearing Vans’ shoe, especially
the Old Skool series. We can easily know that teenagers and adults are mainly
their marketing targets, there are even babies wearing their products as they
provide toddler shoes. Throughout the research, we gathered most of the
information from Vans’ official website while some others are from online
resources. By studying how Vans came through all the difficulties to become one
of the most famous brand, we now have a better understanding on how they
utilise the opportunities they had in the history and how they differentiate
themselves from other shoe brands. Next, we also studied what are the marketing
target, marketing environment and marketing mix of Vans and determined how
these components affect their business. Further investigation through online
have shown what are the factors leading Vans to become a successful brand and
what are its future planning.

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2.     
Introduction

a)     
History/
Origin

According to Vans Official Website, Vans
is an America shoe producer company that has a long history for 52 years until
2018. On 16th March 1966, Paul Van Doren and Jim Van Doren with
their partners, Gordan Lee and Serge Delia start a small Vans store in Anaheim,
California. They had named their business as Van Doren Rubber Company. The
uniqueness of their company is that they manufacture shoes on premises and
sells them to public directly to reduce the cost of production. The first Vans
Deck Shoes is born and now is known as Authentic. In the early of 1970s,
skateboarders who like Vans’ rugged make-up and sticky sole are seen sporting
Vans all over Southern California. By the end of the 70s, Vans has 70 stores in
California and sells them both nationally and internationally through dealers.
In the following years, different types of Vans were introduced. Sk8-Hi was
introduced in 1978 while Vans Classic Slip-Ons became popular internationally through
the appearance in a film named Fast Times at Ridgemont High. 

 

Unfortunately, Vans was filed for
Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 1984. In 1987, Vans managed to pay back all
the creditors and continued to design more and more shoe such as Era, Old
Skool, Classic Slip-Ons and Sk8-Hi. Vans then sponsored the Warped Tour, which
is now called the Vans Warped Tour (the longest running concert series in
America) and the inaugural Triple Crown of Skateboarding event. Starting from
1997s, Vans create the world’s leading action sports series with the purchase
of Triple Crown of Surfing, where it includes event such as skateboarding, BMX,
surfing, wakeboarding, snowboarding, freestyle motocross and supercross. In 1998,
Vans opens its first indoor and outdoor skatepark with the area of 46,000
square-foot at the Orange Mall in Orange County. Vans was recognized by FORBES
as one of the America’s Small Companies in 2000 and won a lot of awards
throughout the year. For example, Vans had been chosen as “Brand of The Year”
by Footwear News and as the “2015 VF Pinnacle Award”. In 2010, Vans opened
House of Vans in Brooklyn, New York where there was a music venue with
performing bands. Later in 2017, Vans have brought House of Vans to several
places as Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Shang Hai, Seoul and Guang Zhou. 

 

 

b)     Business
Philosophy/ Missions

Vans’ mission is also known as their purpose which is
‘To enable creative expression and inspire youth culture by celebrating and
encouraging the Off the Wall attitude that comes from expressing your true
self’. With the hold of youth culture connectivity along 50 years and continues
to advance its roots in action sports, Vans recognise the global “Off the Wall”
connection between the brand and art, action sports, music and street culture
enthusiasts. Their mission is fully presented by Vans team with the top names
in action sports such as skateboarding legend Steve Caballero, skate pro Geoff
Rowley, BMX rider Dakota Roche and snowboarder Andreas Wiig.

 

c)     
Business/
Products/ Services

Vans produces many products for men,
women and kids. For example, shoes, clothing, accessories and even customs. Vans
produces shoes from infants to adults. Vans designed many types and styles of
shoes for customers. The examples of shoe type are low top, slip-on, high top,
original classic, platform, mid top, sandal and boot. The examples of classic
style are old skool, slip-on, authentic, sk8-hi and era. The different designs successfully
attracted customers to purchase their products. On the other hand, Vans provide
services such as online ordering services, shipping services and customising
services.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3.     
Contents

 

a)     
Understand
The Marketing Targets

Target marketing is selecting which
groups or segments an organization can serve profitably. Vans is a business
targeting on kids, teenagers and adults.

 

b)    
Understand
How Marketing Environments Are Affecting The Business

Global
Factors

Due to the advent of Internet,
efficient distribution systems and communication advances had led to
globalization. Vans has the opportunity to bring international influence and
operate as an international brand through globalization, and is also able to compete
with other shoe brands. In this way, Vans is now providing world shipping
services and the shoes are selling worldwide, thus the business will be
positively affected. 

 

Technology
Factors

With the advancement of technology,
social media and Internet have brought big changes to every business. Vans made
good use of it by advertising on social media, mainly on Facebook and Twitter
(Parks, 2015). Besides, buyers who wish to buy their shoes can also order from
their official websites as they provide both order and deliver services. This
saves up a lot of time compared to buying from their stores as they may face
out of stock problems. Furthermore, Vans is using consumer databases to produce
customized designs on their shoes. By publishing advertisement and having these
services, Vans have the opportunity to attract and influence the public, and
increase their sales. With the advanced technology in producing different kind
of materials, Vans launched the All Weather shoe type which is water-repelling
and more resistant to rain and snow a few years back.

 

 

 

 

Sociocultural
Factors  

According to Richards, the
sociocultural factors include demography and the changing of preference of
consumers. What was trending 5 years ago may not be still popular today due to
the different, changing taste and preference of customers from worldwide.
However, Vans adapts the situation by providing different series which are Authentic,
The Era, Slip On, Old Skool and Sk8-Hi since its first shoe was introduced. Besides,
Vans is now planning with the UltraRange upcoming launch where the shoe has
what the Vans’ athletes’ required, it features light cushioning and is more
breathable (Wahba, 2017).

 

Competitive
Factors

Vans is a brand existing since long
time ago, it provides shoes from infant size to size 16 where a lot of other
shoe brands do not provide such big range of shoe size for their customers.
Thus, their customers can get a wide range of selection of the size. Besides,
Vans sells their shoe with moderate price compared to other shoe brands. It is
not too expensive for their customers to purchase, showing great product
pricing service (mbaskool). While in 2004, Vans launched Vans Customs on their
websites to allow people to design their own unique pair of shoes so that everyone
can have the chance to design something they want with their own creativity.
This does not only attract more customer, but also giving them the satisfaction
of getting high quality products with reasonable and affordable price. Furthermore,
Vans differentiates themselves from the others by vividly branding themselves
as a skater’s footwear.

 

Economic
Factors

When the world is experiencing slow
economic growth, it means that consumers do not have high purchasing power to
buy what they want. Vans have to adapt to the situation by lowering the price
of their product, such as giving sales or promotion to attract more customers
during the period of time. However, when inflation occurs, businesses like Vans
have to bear with higher cost of production and are likely forced to increase
the price of their products (Gregory Hamel). This can lower the purchasing
power of the consumers thus affecting the business of Vans.

c)     
Marketing
Mix

According to The Economic Times, marketing
mix can be defined as a tactic that a business or company uses to promote its
product to the public. This strategy is normally used by these companies to
obtain the right mixture of place, price, product and promotion for their
businesses. Marketing mix is also known as the 4Ps in the market, which are
product, price, place and promotion.

 

Product

Vans offer consumers a whole lot of
designed shoes in the Old Skool Series and the Slip On Series. The most iconic
one in the Old Skool Series would be the black and white pair of shoes. This
series was designed mainly for skaters but it has been worn for daily purposes
as well. One of the features of this range of shoes is that some part of the
shoes is made up of canvas and suedes for sturdiness, further extending its
durability (The Idle Man). The waffle sole of the Old Skool Series is also a
preferable choice of skaters because of its grip. Therefore, it could be
suitable for skateboard or any intensive activities. On the other hand, the
Slip On Series would be recommended for daily dress up as it is a slip on and
it does not have shoelaces to tighten the wearer’s feet. There are also shoe
products solely for toddlers, for example, the ones with straps.

 

Price

Vans priced their shoes at the range
of RM100 to RM400 which is best suited for their targeted consumers. Different
series are priced differently. For example, the Old Skool Series is priced
around RM200 to RM300 while the Slip On Series is priced in the range of RM100
to RM250.

 

 

 

 

 

Place

Vans have many of their shops in the
city centre of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur and also all around Selangor. Besides
that, there are also stores placed in other states like Johor Bahru, Malacca
and also in the East. Based on the location chose by Vans to sell their
products such as Sunway Pyramid and Mid Valley Megamall, it is shown that they
are wise enough to choose shopping malls that are famous and always crowded in
order to increase the exposure to great numbers of potential consumers.

 

Promotion

Vans has used many ways to promote
their shoes, including sponsorship, social networking and product placement.
Sponsorship is used by Vans to reinforce their image and also to make their
products popular. According to Vans’ official website, it is stated that they
have sponsored sports and professional skaters like Anthony Van Engelen and
Chima Ferguson. Besides that, social networking like Facebook and Twitter is
also used to promote their products and events to their initial target
audiences who are the younger generations (Baker, 2014). Product placement is
also used in the movie “Fast and Furious 6” where Vans’ shoes were worn by Paul
Walker.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

d)    
Company’s
Success Factors and Its Future Prospects

Every entrepreneur who have the
willingness and prepare to extend their business aboard probably will have
identified goals to achieve (Sam, 2015). Vans has participated in the
international market which it provides goods such as sneakers (the major
product), clothing, bags and others. So, as a global marketing company, Vans
has some successful factors that helps to maintain the business in the fashion
era.

 

Success Factors

i.                   
Make
good use of the Internet (Online Marketing)

Through the advent of Internet, Vans created their own
website to allow customers to order their products easily. The customers can
also be informed about the special events of their company, such as sales and
promotion. Furthermore, the internet has the ability to translate languages for
Vans’ customers to avoid any communication barriers or mistakes so that orders
and messages from customers will be received accurately. Besides, Vans get to
promote their products well and yet compete among the fierce competitors, thus
expand their business abroad and make their brand well known.

 

ii.                 
Affiliation

A company must know their
employees and customers well in order to encourage and activate the target
sector. According to Novi, Vans is an amazing company to work for. They offer
amazing benefits and practice culture of work that was like having a second family.
Vans also worked with a lot of company such as Yoobi, Microsoft and others in
order to promote arts and creativity, and raise brand awareness through charity
events. For example, Vans held the Vans Custom Culture with the aim of
motivating and setting free high school students. Vans embrace the students’
creativity through art and design to bring attention to diminishing arts
education budgets. Lastly, Vans believes that everyone have their own rights to
express themselves through arts and creativity. By holding these events, Vans
gained the reputation and confident from the public.

 

 

iii.               
Creativity

At the official website of Vans,
there is a function of letting their customers to customize their own design of
shoes. There is a video tutorial for the customers to know what and how they
should do in order to customize their own shoes. They can choose from Classic,
All Weather and Classic Lites category. All Weather provides premium water
resistant leather and suede uppers, warm linings, and a heat retention layer
between the sockliner and outsole to help keep feet warm and dry. These
services above can allow their customers to design their own shoes and not many
other competitors have this function. Customers can fulfill their own
satisfaction by customizing their own shoe and getting what they exactly want.
This is a very efficient way to increase the happiness and satisfaction of
their customer, thus they are very successful.

 

Future prospects

Vans,
the shoe and clothing company marketed has some really ambitious plans for
growth. This brand recently announced that it’s looking to add $1 billion in revenue by 2016 in an investor
meeting. Vans currently takes in about $1.2 billion per year, and plans to add
200 more retail locations. This would bring its total retails locations to more
than 500.

 

According to Schlanger and
Bhasin (2012), the future prospects of Vans are:

i.                   
Coming out with a bunch of new technologies for its products

Nowadays, with the advancement in technology,
Vans hopes to lead in the sportswear sector by using the technology. The coming
products, LXVI line includes: 

·        
LuxLiner – a free-floating liner

·        
Waffleflex – a new tread design

·        
UltraCush Lite – a custom blend of foams

·        
ActionFit – a proprietary lifted heel fit

·        
PleasureCuff – advanced heel and collar cushioning

·        
RapidWeld – new stitch-less construction

 

ii.                 
Domestically expanding outside of the West Coast

Vans has enjoyed success in a number of
metropolitan areas, including New York and Mexico City. Vans major company
planned to expand out of the company’s core market in West Coast in the few
years to come, and these main Vans companies will be functioned to raise up the
brand awareness.

iii.               
Centering its global strategy on Asia

Through the Asian
and Pacific market, Vans is having their biggest planning which is to boost the
profits with an additional 170 million dollars in growth by the end of 2016.
This amount is nearly three times compared to its current revenue.  Other than that, Vans also encourage
development in its European, Middle Eastern, and African markets. This was
expected to get an increase of 350 million dollars in revenues by 2016.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4.      Conclusion

In conclusion,
we knew that Vans is a very successful brand that has lasted more than 50 years
with its purpose to enable youth to express themselves and inspire others. Vans
is a brand that strongly encourages the Off the Wall attitude by expressing one’s
true self. They have successfully attracted many of the teenagers and adults to
become their customers, as we can see in Malaysia, the black and white Old
Skool Vans was out of stock few months ago due to the excessive demand from
their customers. Besides restocking the black and white Old Skool Vans, Vans
also tried to produce Old Skool series with new designs, one of the most famous
new design is the Chex Skate which is also currently out of stock in Malaysia.
Other than producing new design of shoes, Vans also provide customize service
for those who wished to have a unique pair of Vans. As above, we knew that Vans
is a company that is always aware of the requirement of their customers and is
able to adapt to their preference well. From the research we have done, Vans
took the marketing environment and marketing mix in consideration seriously.
They have nicely planned the 4Ps which are product, price, place and
promotion in order to increase their future sales.