International Marketing Project
THE FINAL REPORT
1 Executive Summary
The Executive Summary is a critical element of any report as it may be the only section of
your plan that a busy senior manager from your company may have time to read before you
present it, in a work context.
The following points MUST be included in the Executive Summary:
Summary of entire plan including key objectives and strategy highlights
Projected revenue, profit and market share figures
Investment required for the Project and projected return on investment (ROI).
The Executive Summary should be one page length maximum.
Failure to include an Executive Summary with the specified points will result in an
automatic deduction of 10% from the Project Written Report mark.
This section should only appear in Asst 3.
This section should provide some background on the company and the purpose of the
3 Situation Analysis
3.1 Business Environment
This section is concerned with external environment factors that are likely to impact on
your company and its strategy. You will need to identify and discuss the changes, trends,
developments and key uncertainties in the business environment that are likely to affect the
Factors that you should examine in this section include:
economic conditions in the market, and likely future trends
social and cultural factors and any changes or trends emerging that could affect your
technological factors and likely innovations that could affect your plan
political or legal factors affecting, or likely to affect, the company, the
industry/product/service, business activities or customers
infrastructure e.g. telecommunications, media and information technology environment
The above list is not exhaustive. Textbooks (see recommended list) should be consulted for
other areas you should consider. Most of the information required should be able to be
obtained by ‘desk’ research (using secondary data sources). It is recognised that in some
instances you will be unable to obtain the necessary information (but you should identify
where further market research is required). Tables or graphs should be used eg to show
key economic indicators, demographic statistics etc.
This section should NOT be a compilation of every fact that you can find out about the
business environment in the market. The objective is to identify the key forces and trends
likely to impact on your company and the business opportunity you have identified.
Conclusions must be drawn to show the relevance of the information to the plan.
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It is from this analysis of the external business environment that the Opportunities and
Threats should emerge when subsequently carrying out the SWOT Analysis.
3.2 Market Analysis
If your plan is to source materials from China, this section should focus on production and
distribution channels within China, and the market for the products in Australia.
If your plan is to sell to China, in this section you need to demonstrate an understanding of
the target market, and consumer and customer needs in that market.
As a guide, you should at least discuss:
Definition of the market in which you will be competing
Market size and outlook for the product/service in the target market (i.e. current size of
market [units and values] and likely future trends)
Market characteristics, including:
– distribution channels for the product or service category (and any barriers to entry)
– prices and pricing practices affecting the category (including government controls)
– effect of tariffs, subsidies etc
Target market behaviour, including:
– market segmentation (i.e. how the market is typically segmented)
– potential target market segment(s) for the product/service
– consumer/customer characteristics (eg demographics, geographic, preferences)
– consumer/customer purchasing behaviour.
Generally the best final reports will have detailed market analyses and forecasts (either
through research or through estimation) and comprehensive sections on market
characteristics, trends and target market behaviour. Some market research (especially of
customers and distributors) required to complete this section may be difficult to obtain. If this
information is not readily available then you may note that further research may be required,
and attach a Market Research brief as an Appendix.
3.3 Competitor Analysis
The purpose of this section is to develop an understanding of the competitive
environment in which the organisation will operate in the market.
At the very minimum for this section you must identify and evaluate the following:
existing and potential Australian competitors
international competitors either already in the targeted market, or who may potentially
enter that market
any competition from substitute products or services.
The ideal competitor analysis section should take the accurate market size (in terms of units
and values) and further break it down by competitor market shares, with a commentary on
each of the key existing and potential competitors.
You should attempt to make a profile of each of the major competitors, so as to assess their
products, market share and coverage, as well as their strategy and international experience.
In looking at competitors you should be trying to identify whether their current skills and
assets provide them with some sustainable competitive advantage that you will need to
try to neutralise, or opportunities on which you may be able to capitalise, in developing your
marketing strategy. You also need to consider what retaliatory moves competitors might
make to neutralise your marketing strategy.
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The competitor analysis should provide a major input to the Strengths and Weaknesses
component of the SWOT Analysis (which assesses your company’s assets and skills relative
to your competitors). It may also indicate Opportunities and Threats.
3.4 Organisation Assets and Skills
Analysis of the company’s skills and assets are vital to the SWOT analysis, market entry
strategies, marketing plan and development of a SCA (sustainable competitive
advantage). You should critically look at the company’s skills and assets and consider how
appropriate they are for the market you plan to enter.
The analysis should consider and discuss the following, where relevant:
previous and current experience in this market (online and offline)
technical/production capabilities, production capacity and resources (including
research and development capabilities and facilities)
technological skills and knowledge (especially where continuing technology
development is critical to maintain SCA)
relationships with distributors (including channels typically used and margins)
existing supplier or key customer relationships
market shares, profit margins, cost structures
company profile and financial capability
company business philosophy and culture.
The objective is to understand what the firm is good at, and what shortcomings or limitations
might require skills or capabilities to be developed in order to enter the market chosen.
4 SWOT Analysis
You will need to undertake a Strengths and Weaknesses analysis of the company (in
comparison to competitors or its ability to compete), and a separate analysis of
Opportunities and Threats in the marketplace. This analysis should be a culmination of the
analysis you have undertaken in the Situation, Market, Competitor and Organisation Assets
and Skills Sections, and should be drawn from these sections.
You should not introduce significant new information or facts in a SWOT analysis that
have not been evaluated earlier in the report. New information introduced into the SWOT
without explanation will be contradictory or confusing when viewed against your earlier
After you have completed the SWOT analysis, there is a need to come to conclusions about
where the firm’s situation lies in the spectrum of <<very favourable …. (to)… very
These conclusions must be written up in an ‘Implications of SWOT Analysis’
summary at the end of the SWOT, and should focus on the positive aspects i.e. the
opportunity for the company, or remedial action required to create the opportunity,
that arises out of the analysis.
This is the end of Asst 3
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Asst 4 should include your revised Asst 3 and then continue on to the
5 Evaluation of Alternative Strategies
This is the section in the Report that will clearly demonstrate your knowledge of theory and
concepts and ability to apply them in an international business context.
You should complete a brief but effective evaluation of alternative strategies open to the
company in the following areas:
Market entry options (if it is a new company or product)
Target market selection, positioning and marketing mix options
Generic strategic options for targeted segments
5.1 Alternative Market Entry Strategies
An evaluation of all realistic market entry options is required (typically at least three,
including your preferred option). These options should be discussed, covering advantages
and disadvantages, how they might work and reasons for adopting or discarding each one,
within the context of your company and the chosen market.
5.2 Alternative Target Market, Positioning and Marketing Mix Strategies
Having weighed up and evaluated all the realistic market entry options, it is now necessary
to identify several potential market segments (target markets) in the chosen country and
consider how they might be serviced with appropriate marketing mix strategies. This does
not require a lot of detail, but you must show your understanding of the concepts
involved and your ability to think through and express marketing strategy options.
You should reduce the options down to a number that would be realistically implementable
by your firm. As a guide you should consider at least or two or three alternative target
markets (including your preferred option).
In examining these alternative strategies, you must:
1. Identify potential target market segments in the chosen market
2. Outline possible positioning strategies for each of these target markets, and link them to
brief alternative marketing mix strategies.
3. Indicate your preferred strategy, and why.
5.3 Alternative Generic Strategies
This should be an analysis of the most effective generic strategies (cost, focus,
differentiation see Michael Porter) for the targeted market, and an explanation of how this fits
with corporate-level strategies.
This section should NOT be merely a write-up of the company’s preferred strategy
without reference to alternative strategies.
5.4 Preferred Strategy
In about one half to one page (maximum) you should now ‘pull together’ and write up a
summary of your recommended strategy (i.e. market entry, target market, positioning and
marketing mix) for the chosen market.
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A preliminary financial outcome for the preferred strategy should also be included here,
showing sales, profit margin and market share that you believe might be achievable in the
launch year of your strategy, subject to a much more rigorous and detailed analysis that you
will provide later in the Final Report under Economic Evaluation.
This summary will be the ‘springboard’ for writing the detailed Strategy section of your Final
A mission statement plus specific financial and market share figure objectives must be
included in the Objectives section, and must be measurable over time. All objectives for your
plan need to be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely).
7 Recommended Strategy
The Recommended Strategy should flow directly from the Evaluation of Alternative
Strategies and Preferred Strategy summary earlier.
Considerable detail will be required here – this is the ‘engine room’ of the plan – the
‘what, how, when, where and how much’ section.
Generic strategy for international business and for marketing should be explained. This will
include the form of business (joint venture, subsidiary) and detail on any partners in China.
You should also show how your generic strategy for this SBU fits into corporate strategy.
Target Market(s) should be clearly identified and described, Market Entry strategy
explained and justified and Positioning Strategy clearly expressed and explained.
The Marketing Mix Strategy should include sufficient detail to enable robust economic
evaluations to be made. As a guide, the following information should be clearly presented
and strongly supported and justified:
Identification and description of the full range of products or services being launched,
product benefits, description of packaging, comparisons with competitors
Pricing strategy (price is the only revenue-generating element of the marketing mix)
Specific channel choices, channel management strategies, costs associated with
establishing and maintaining channels
Communication strategy, media selection and strategy, other promotion activities, and
costs (a detailed promotional budget must be included).
Personnel, Process and Physical Facilities should be considered, even if the product is
primarily a physical good
8 Economic Evaluation
The Economic Evaluation Section is the ‘moment of truth’ for the Plan – it is the conversion
of aspirations into realistic monetary terms. The key aim for this section in your Asst is to
determine whether, and when you will begin to make profit after following the recommended
strategies outlined above. Realism is far more important here than exact numbers or any
complex accounting processes.
8.1 Planning Assumptions
All your assumptions relating to forecasting market sizes, market shares, prices, revenues,
costs, and any other variables that may have significant impact, should be included here.
Where you cannot obtain enough information to make a forecast, you will need to create
your best estimates and clearly explain how you developed those estimates.
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Check your forecast to see whether it exceeds current production capacity – if it does, this
may require investment in manufacturing resources in Australia or overseas that will
significantly affect the profitability of your plan.
8.2 and 8.3 Forecast Sales, Market Share, Costs and Profit
All analyses and forecasts should cover a minimum 3 year timeframe.
Financial forecasts should be presented in the form of Profit and Loss Statements (P&L) for
each year of the Plan, ideally with the 3 years of P&L statements shown in the one table, to
make comparisons simple.
Forecasts should be as realistic as possible – it is not uncommon for losses to be justifiable
in early years if establishment costs are high and the profit outlook is good.
8.4 Sensitivity Analysis
Sections 8.2 and 8.3 should be your ‘Most-Likely’ Scenario. You should model two further
scenarios – a ‘Best-Case’ and ‘Worst-Case’ scenario, clearly identifying your changed
assumptions in each scenario and using the same structure and time periods as in the
A Table summarising the P&L Statements for all scenarios should be presented in this
9 Implementation and Control
This section shows how and when each element of the plan will be carried out, how it will be
monitored, what unexpected contingency events may take place to impede the plan and
what action will be taken to overcome these contingencies.
9.1 Action Plan for Implementation of Recommendations
An Action Plan to implement all activities detailed in the Plan, those executives in the
company responsible for implementation, and commencement and completion dates, must
be included in this section, with the following structure:
ACTIVITY/TASK RESPONSIBLE START DATE COMPLETION DATE
The aim of this Action Plan is that it can be pinned on a wall and clearly indicate what should
be happening each week/month, and who should be working on those tasks.
9.2 & 9.3 Monitoring of Action Plan, Contingency Plans
A monitoring and review program should be incorporated into the plan. Review stages
(including the participants involved) should be identified from the Objectives and Action Plan.
Contingency Plans should be included, clearly identifying contingency events that may act
to impede or accelerate the plan, and actions required to respond to these events. These
plans may be in discussion form or in the same form as the Action Plan.
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