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Company overview of carte blanche

Carte Blanche, a celebrated participant in the societal look industry in the UK and worldwide, is set to present a new merchandise, e-greeting card, on January 1, 2011. This study therefore covers the new merchandise and trade name development scheme and their associated activities that may guarantee the success of the trade name from development up to the first 3 to 4 old ages of its life rhythm. The scheme is broken down into 3 aims, viz. : to develop a new societal look merchandise to the selected mark market ; to develop new country of trade name scheme toward accomplishing set gross revenues mark ; and to place Carte Blanche through the activities above to present first-class growing rate. The merchandise shall function immature people and their households and shall be distributed intensively on the cyberspace while using competitory pricing to guarantee market incursion.

Carte Blanche Greetings Ltd is one of the key participants in the societal look industry in the UK, and globally. The societal look industry is associated with salutation cards, notes and letter paper, gift wrap, “ and other socially expressive merchandises ” ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996, p. 41 ) .

The best marketer of all the merchandises produced from the societal look market is the recognizing card. It accounts for a ample part of the over $ 4 billion worth of the societal look market, globally ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996, p. 41 ) .

The planetary one-year growing rate of the industry is estimated to be an impressive 7 per centum ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996 ) .

The developed states including the UK and other Western European states, North America, New Zealand, Australia, and Japan history for a disproportionately high per centum of the market demand ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996 ) .

Carte Blanche Greetings was founded by Stephen Haines over more than twenty old ages ago and he still serves as its Chairman ( Carte Blanche, 2010 ) .

Carte Blanche is a planetary participant in the societal look industry with a reputable trade name and merchandise portfolio which span the different available classs of the industry ( Carte Blanche, 2010 ) .

Carte Blanche presently boasts of recognized trade names and a reputable merchandise portfolio. The merchandises are presently published in 14 linguistic communications, and distributed in more than 60 states using multiple channels of distribution ( Carte Blanche, 2010 ) .

The societal look industry is characterized by changeless alteration ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996 ) and cultural sensitiveness ( Keegan, 1969 ) .

This study is necessary in specifying a way for guaranting the growing of Carte Blanche in the extremely competitory, invariably altering, and culturally sensitive societal look industry over the following three to five old ages.

Audited account

SWOT and PEST analyses will be carried-out here as “ theoretical accounts are peculiarly valuable in guaranting logical consistence and researching the elusive interactions affecting a limited figure of variables ” ( Porter, 1991, p. 98 ) .

SWOT analysis

SWOT model that encompasses the strengths and failings, chances and menaces of a company in relation to its internal and external environment severally, and it is a dependable procedure for scheme choice ( Barney, 1996 ; Novicevic et al. , 2004 ) . The model every bit applied to Carte Blanche is as below:


Carte Blanche self-praises of recognized trade names and a reputable merchandise portfolio that the consumer is already familiar with and trust.

The Carte Blanche merchandises are presently published in 14 linguistic communications worldwide taking into awareness the cultural sensitiveness of the societal look industry.

The company already has planetary presence as it is found in over 60 states and ensures effectual distribution through multiple distribution channels.

Carte Blanche employs the usage of local licensee to harvest such benefits as “ minimum plus committedness in physical assets such as stock list and human resources ” ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996, p. 46 ) .


Limited planetary coverage.

Lack of fiscal musculus.


Carte Blanche possesses good chances for merchandise transportation to other states non soon covered. The chance for merchandise transportation is said to be greatest for states with features similar to that of the arising states ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996, p. 42 ) , whereas the UK, Carte Blanche ‘s place state, portions a batch with many of UK ‘s former settlements such as India.

There is great possible for farther internalisation of Carte Blanche merchandises as merely 60 of the many states in the universe are presently covered.


The industry is characterized by heavy weight rivals both in the UK and abroad with planetary outreach such as Hallmark, American Greetings, and Gibson Greetings ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996, p. 40 ) .

The industry is laced with cultural sensitiveness and could take to “ lost gross revenues and considerable corporate embarrassment ” ( Ricks, 1983 as cited by Berkowitz and Hill, 1996, p. 40 ) for an industry participant who commits a cultural blooper.

Plague analysis


Legal ordinances require different methods of packaging for the societal look merchandises in different environments ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996 ) .

The authorities and its regulative bureaus frequently regulate the type of different stuffs that may be used in merchandise fabrication, and this may change from one state to another ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996 ) .

Government ordinances may besides put limitations and set criterions for merchandise labeling ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996 ) .

For advertisement, PR, and trade publicity with their associated fiscal cost are frequently extremely regulated by the authorities ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996 ) .

Export to other states may be restricted or hampered by inter-government dealingss, trade agreements, and policies ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996 ) .


Variations in clime and/ or conditions of the Carte Blanche place state from its export states may requires merchandise version ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996 ) . For illustration, the Torrid Zones do non see snow autumn during the Christmas season.

Workers or employees in the mark states for internationalisation may by and large possess lower expertness than in the UK and hence may necessitate some preparation with its associated cost ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996 ) .

To take full economic advantage of new markets, merchandises should be developed to run into the different occasions, jubilations, and festival found at that place ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996 ) .


The different societal jubilations such as festivals found in different environments frequently necessitate the demand for different customize merchandises and may take to increased gross ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996 ) ..

The industry is laced with cultural sensitiveness and could take to “ lost gross revenues and considerable corporate embarrassment ” ( Ricks, 1983 as cited by Berkowitz and Hill, 1996, p. 40 ) for an industry participant who commits a cultural blooper. But, it is besides a immense chance to run into need demands.


The industry participants require comparatively extended investing in engineering in bettering on their efficiency, effectual, and general public presentation ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996 ) .

Carte Blanche makes usage of advanced supply concatenation associated engineering in guaranting effectual and efficient distribution of its productive for a competitory advantage ( Carte Blanche, 2010 ) .

SMART aims

To give concrete way and do the success of the new merchandise development measurable at the terminal of the twenty-four hours, we have set the undermentioned SMART aims.

To develop a new societal look merchandise to be launched by January 1, 2011 to the selected mark market ;

Develop new country of trade name scheme toward accomplishing gross revenues mark of ?500,000 by December 31, 2011 ; and

Position Carte Blanche through the activities above to present first-class growing rate of 10 % per annum and market portion of 40 % over the following 3-5 old ages.

The aims above contain elements of long-run scheme although they have been set for the first 12 months of the new merchandise life rhythm, but their accomplishment may guarantee that the long-run aims are realized. Huan et Al. ( 2007, p. 277 ) mentioning Doyle et Al. ( 1985 ) , Hooley and Lynch ( 1985 ) , Shaw ( 1995 ) , Siu ( 2000 ) , Baker and Leidecker ( 2001 ) , and Siu and Liu ( 2005 ) argues “ that successful companies set longer term strategic aims ( i.e. short-term net incomes are non sought at the disbursal of longer run strategic aims ) ” .

New merchandise and strategic trade name development program and execution

Sing a trade name development program for Carte Blanche is critical as many research workers such as McWilliam ( 1993 ) , Tauber ( 1981 ) , Economist ( 1990 ; 1991 ) , and Ambler and Styles ( 1996 ) recognized that trade name and line extensions is now a popular growing scheme, particularly noticeable in concentrated fast-moving consumer goods industries. However, “ developing trade name or line extensions is one type of new merchandise development ( NPD ) ” ( Ambler and Styles, 1996, p.13 ) .

The new merchandise development procedure shall follow that which was outlined by Kotler ( 1991 ) . The eight point sequence that will bring forth the NPD program is as discussed below:

1. Idea coevals

A thorough procedure of thought coevals that involved parts from the different stakeholders resulted in the birth of a assortment of thoughts refering the new merchandises that may be developed and how these may individual beef up the market place and profitableness of Carte Blanche.

Some of these thoughts include the extension of the current and different merchandise lines, the extension of the current Carte Blanche trade name ( s ) , and the creative activity of a new merchandise and trade name wholly. With regard to the classs of thoughts mentioned above, alone merchandise offerings were besides generated.

2. Idea showing:

The generated thoughts were farther screened to insulate those that may most closely back up the declared aims of the new merchandise and trade name development scheme, and the overall Carte Blanche scheme ( Kotler, 1991 ) .

Both line and trade name extension have the advantage of decreased cost and hazard as opposed to developing a wholly new trade name ( McWilliam, 1993 ; Tauber, 1981 ; Economist, 1990 ; 1991 ) .

Besides because the line and trade name extensions have the advantage of standing on the foundation of an bing trade name placement, the hazard of their failure is besides minimum ( Boush and Loken, 1991 ; Sunde and Brodie, 1993 ) compared to set uping a wholly new trade name.

Hence, the scheme to be adopted is trade name extension. Harmonizing to Aaker and Keller ( 1990 ) , trade name extensions may be defined as entry into a new merchandise class utilizing an trade name name that is already steadfastly established.

The new merchandise is electronic recognizing cards that the client may order for, be supplied with, and he may send on to his contact, all through the Internet. This is because consumers of societal look merchandises are unambiguously younger in many state like in the UK where record figure of cards are given for 21st birthday jubilations ( Berkowitz and Hill, 1996, p. 45 ) .

Furthermore, there is tremendous growing potency in the cyberspace universe dominated by immature people and in states such as India and China with pullulating immature cyberspace users. ( ITU, 2010 )

This new merchandise line may besides profit from the omnipresent nature of the cyberspace for easy commercialism and widest distribution ( ITU, 2010 ) .

3. Concept development and testing

A sample of what the online recognizing card will be like and how it may be ordered for and received was developed. The construct holding been tested with a indiscriminately selected representative group of the mark market gained favourable involvement and citation bespeaking possible merchandise blessing and acceptance by the overall mark market ( Kotler, 1991 ) . This manner, the attitude of the mark market to the new merchandise was ascertained before shiping on any expensive and clip devouring farther merchandise development ( Kotler, 1991 ) .

4. Marketing scheme development

The new merchandise ( s ) , electronic salutation cards, is targeted at the households, particularly the immature people in the UK and abroad.

Young people are easy accessible through assorted electronic media and channel, particularly the Internet, and are rather savvy in its usage for many activities such as for purchases and communications ( Marketing Teacher, 2010 ) .

Merchandises in the fast traveling class such as societal look merchandises like recognizing cards and nutrient if supported by appropriate and effectual advertizement have been shown to be successful with this mark market ( McDonald ‘s, neodymium ) .

Statistically for the UK, 19 % of the population is made up of age 16 and below ; 14 % of the population is made up of age 16 to 24. Furthermore, 63 % of the UK kids live with their parents ; 6 % of age 20 to 24 are married ; and 19 % cohabit or live with their parents ( UK Office for National Statistics, 2007A ; 2007B ) . These represent a immense market of Internet understanding persons.

5. Business analysis ( i¬?nancial )

Such factors as cost and demand projections ; degree and impact of competition ; required investing ; and the profitableness of the new trade name have been carefully considered.

Figure 1 below represents a graphical representation of how the mark market of the e-greeting card trade name of Carte Blanche is envisaged to place the new product/ trade name. However, the graph is based chiefly on personal perceptual experience derived from experiences and cognition of the societal look industry.


bluish saloon: Carte Blanche current merchandise offering ;

Red saloon: e-greeting card ;

Green saloon: rivals ‘ merchandises

Figure 1 Angstrom Market Positioning Map exemplifying the place of the e-greeting card trade name against rivals.

Cost of production is expected to be much lower than in the production of difficult salutation cards as there will be no disbursals associated with purchase of stuffs such as card board and printing. However, important initial investing will be required in the acquisition of IT substructure and preparation of interior decorators in their usage.

Demand is expected to surge as there is a immense waiting market to work based on the statistics of the mark market offered earlier.

Besides, the high return on investing that is associated with e-commerce is besides anticipated in this instance ( ITU, 2010 ) .

6. Physical merchandise development ( includes branding determination )


Core-product: the nucleus merchandise represents the benefit of the new merchandise to the consumer. It is in the class of societal look. It feels emotional demands and provides pleasance to both the transmitter and receiving system.

Tangible merchandise: This represents the touchable or physical merchandise but it is in the electronic signifier in this instance, and chiefly mention to the electronic or e-greeting cards.

Brand name: Brand name choice is a portion of the stigmatization scheme and exercises a important function in a house ‘s overall selling scheme ( Douglas et al. , 2001 ) . Many companies that are keeping first-class growing despite intense competitions frequently rely on their well established trade name in keeping this gross and market portion growing showing the importance of the pick of a trade name name ( McWilliam, 1993 ; Tauber, 1981 ; Economist, 1990 ; 1991 ; and Ambler and Styles, 1996 ) . Hence, two basic classs of trade name names were considered for the e-greeting card. They are:

Wholly new names such as “ Mayor ‘s ” and “ Feel me ” that does non reflect Carte Blanche or any of its well established trade names at all, and

Name callings that are based on Carte Blanche and any of its well established trade names.

However, the name “ Carte Blanche e-Card ” was chosen. The pick comes with some comparative advantages ( Kotler and Pfoertsch, 2006 ) such as:

1. Rest on the good place of the Carte Blanche trade name ;

2. “ Carte Blanche ” offers hallmark protection ;

3. Ease of pronounce, recollection, and acknowledgment ; and

4. It is attractive.


A combination of both pull and push scheme will be employed here.

The pull scheme will be designed to excite demand from the mark market. Active public dealingss, viral selling, personal merchandising, and public interviews will be used to make a seeable trade name and promote the mark market to seek out the new merchandise.

The push scheme will organize the primary publicity scheme to be employed as the merchandise is being introduced to the mark market freshly. Therefore, an initial push scheme may be effectual in making consciousness and acquaintance for the new merchandise ( Berthon et al. , 2003 ) . The push scheme will do usage of a media-mix scheme ( Ephron, 2000 ) utilizing paid advert in magazines, newspaper, Television, and wireless and out-of-door advertisement, and on the cyberspace, for maximal impact.


Penetration scheme shall be employed. This is because the merchandise is new and its endurance at the market entry phase is critical ( Penn province University, 2007 ) . The monetary value will hence be kept every bit low as possible at the market entry phase but shall stay dynamic and respond to the different phases of the merchandise life-cycle and market forces. The principle behind this scheme is demonstrated in the Figure 2 below:











Figure 2 Pricing scheme matrix ( Beginning: Selling Teacher, 2010 )



Intensive distribution of the merchandise shall be the distribution scheme. The merchandise shall be distributed chiefly over the cyberspace utilizing all electronic appliances with Internet connexion capableness. Kotler and Pfoertsch ( 2006 ) are of the sentiment that gross generated from similar merchandises is frequently a map of the strength of the distribution, and intensive distribution is critical for market acknowledgment and incursion, and deriving market portion for a new merchandise.

7. Market proving

Before the full commercialisation of the merchandise is carried-out, it shall be offered for sale on Carte Blanche web site and other well-known mercantile establishments on the cyberspace. This will enable the monitoring of consumer reaction to it ; the merchandise ‘s public presentation based on the designed selling program ; and the response of the rivals to it.

8. Commercialization

The concluding phase of merchandise and trade name development. After proving and analysis, the house eventually introduces the merchandise to its mark market. This besides involves implementing a entire selling program and full production.

Measurement of SMART Objectives

The realisation or non of the SMART objectives shall be evaluated utilizing steps and prosodies from Kokkinaki and Ambler ( 1999 ) and Kurtinaitiene ( 2005 ) that have been validated in literature. There are 6 classs of available prosodies under this model, nevertheless, the most relevant shall be applied to the measuring of the SMART objectives in this instance. These classs are:

Fiscal steps ( as turnover, part border and net income )

Competitive market steps ( as market portion, advertisement and promotional portions )

Consumer behavior steps ( as consumer incursion, trueness and client gained )

Consumer intermediate steps ( as trade name acknowledgment, satisfaction and purchase purpose )

Direct client steps ( as distribution degree, profitableness of mediators and service quality )

Innovativeness steps ( as merchandises launched and their gross )

The public presentation of the new merchandise shall be evaluated against the above prosodies so that effectivity of the selling and trade name scheme can be determined.


There exist tremendous potency in the e-greeting card section of the societal look industry that the industry participants may tap into. This study as shown the challenges of the societal look industry such as cultural sensitiveness and changeless alteration. However, Carte Blanche, a good known industry participant in the UK with tentacles in most portion of the universe may guarantee uninterrupted growing over the following three to five old ages by tapping into the chance that IT and Internet offers for production and distribution of merchandises severally. Following the recommendations of this study may assist guarantee that Carte Blanche place itself and its trade name ( s ) for the prospective steady growing.