An Appraisal Of Advertising As A Tool For Promoting Sales Of Soft Drinks (A Case Study Of Selected Soft Drinks Company In Kaduna) 

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An Appraisal Of Advertising As A Tool For Promoting Sales Of Soft Drinks (A Case Study Of Selected Soft Drinks Company In Kaduna)


Abstract


The history of advertising is as old as man himself. The story date back to the prehistoric period when man was using town criers, drummers, flute blowing to pass across important information to present day time where, television radio and other print media is now in use. In advertising, its difficult to trace the result of any given advert or an entire campaign to a products or the entire sales volume. It’s as result of this, that the research work was necessitated. The objectives of the study was to determine what pattern the advertising message took and its effectiveness; to highlight the various types of media and factors to consider before choosing a media type; to evaluate the effectiveness of advertising through sales and communication research. In line with these objectives, three research questions and two hypotheses were formulated for the study. The design of the study was the descriptive survey. The study was conducted in Kaduna metropolis. The population of the study was 480 comprising 180 staff of 7up bottling company and 300 staff of coca-cola bottling company. Out of this population, sample sizes of 80 respondents were randomly drawn, comprising 40 each for 7up and coca-cola bottling company Kaduna. Mean, standard deviation and t-test was used for analysis. The major findings of the study revealed among others that musical messages are now the vogue. Among the most important factors considered in determining a media type to use is cost. In pre-testing activities, most adverts are seen by expert before beaming it to the final consumers. While in post-testing the sales volume level is accepted as the most important post-testing criteria. There was no significant difference in the mean responses of staff of 7up bottling company and coca-cola bottling company on the two hypotheses tested. Recommendations were made, based on the research questions. Among these are that advertiser should look more into other message patterns other than musical. Advertiser should also look more beyond cost as a major determinant in selecting media type.


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

Advertisement is one of the four major tools that companies use to direct persuasive communication to target buyers and publics. It consists of non- personal or one-way forms of communication conducted through paid media under clear sponsorship. The advertisers included not only commercial firms but museums, fund raiser and various social action organisations seeking to advertise their causes to various target publics. As a matter of fact, the thirty four largest advertising spender in the u.s is the American government within the commercial sector, the top one hundred national advertisers account for approximate one-fourth (1/4) of all national advertising.

The U.S. soft industry began in the late 1880s. John S. Penberton, an Atlanta pharmacist. Developed the coca-cola brand as a soda fountain drink in 1886 and poisoned it as a “brain tonic and intellectual beverage” (Govan and livingood 1977). Both the coca-cola brand and company took an early lead in the soft-drink industry. For the achieved national distribution early on and the company has consistently dominated the industry.

Currently, coca-cola products are sold in about 200 countries with more than 230 different brands. Best-known beverage brands in the U.S include coke. Diet coke, mello yellow, fanta, minute maid, Mr. pibb, Nestea, sprite, Barq`s Root Bear, Dasani Water, Fresca, Fruitopia, and Hi-c (www. Coca-cola.com 2002) seven-up Bottling Company Plc was founded in 1951 by the late Sheik Mohammed El-Khalil. Production started on October 1st 1960. Our brands include 7-up, Pepsi, Mirinda (orange, soda, tonic), and teem. Flavours are added as and when need is justified. We are committed to a culture of excellence in all our activities. Hence, we strive to position our

company to meet and exceed the expectations of our employees, customers, suppliers, shareholders, government and its agencies, including the general public.

In line with the following; our mission is

“To refresh and inspire a youthful lifestyle”

Our Vision

“To be the most admired and innovative company in Nigeria

Although advertising is primarily a private enterprise marketing tool, it is used in all the countries of the world including socialist countries. Advertising is a cost effective way to dissemination messages, whether it is to build brand preference for coca cola all over the world or to motivate a developing nations consumer to drink milk or to practice birth control.

Organization obtains their advertising in different ways. In small companies advertising is handled by someone in the sales or marketing department, work with an advertising agency. Large companies set up their own advertising departments, whose managers report to the vice president of marketing. The advertising department job is to develop the total budget approve advertising agency advert and campaigns and handle direct mail advertising, dealer displays and other forms of advertising not ordinarily performed by the agency. Most companies use an out side advertising agency to help them create advertising campaigns and to select and purchase media.

In developing an advertising programme marketing managers must always start by identifying the target market and buyer motives.

The advertising Naira support various media magazine and newspaper space; radio television; out door displays (poster, billboards, signs, skywriting); direct mail; novelties (match boxes, pens, calendars); tear pads (carbus) catalogues; directories (yellow pages), and circulars. And advertising has many purposes; long term build-up of the organizations, corporate image (institutional advertising), long term build-up of a particular brand (brand advertising) information dissemination about a sale, or event (classified advertising), announcement of a special sale (sale promotional advertising) and advocacy of a particular cause (advocacy advertising).


1.2 Statement of the Problem

Although, there has been a great deal of work directed at evaluating advertising effect on product and or services, this has remain unsolved. Giles (1983) said “it is virtually impossible except in mail-order selling or certain direct mail campaign to quantify exactly the contribution of advert to profit.”

Stanton (1983), also said that its difficult to identify the result of any given advert or an entire campaign. He also said that one couldn’t attribute a given unit of sales to any specific advertisement or campaign.

Based on the above context, one can categorically say that its difficulty to trace the impact of advert to the success of a product. Increment in sales volume of any soft drink could have been as a result of any other than advertising effectiveness.


1.3 Purpose of the Study

  1. To determine what patterns the advertising message can take and how effective are these pattern.
  2. To highlight on the various types of media and the factors to consider before choosing any particular types.
  3. To evaluate the effectiveness of advertising through sales and communication research.
  4. To suggest the ways and manners through which advertising problems can be tackled and improved upon.

1.4 Significance of the Study

  1. To PGDE/marketing students or would- be researchers, this will provide a pedestal upon which a better and improved research work can be build upon.
  2. To the employers and employees of the various soft drinks industry, some of the suggestion made in this write up will be of immense benefit to them in terms of strategies development and increase in sales volume and profitability through the various strategies that is suggested.
  3. To other library users, this will be of immense benefit to them.

1.5 Assumption of the Study

The following assumptions are inherent in this study.

  1. The researcher assume that irrespective of the amount of money that is spent on advertising, it will not yield an equal corresponding amount of increase in sales
  2. However, it is generally assumed that a small amount of money spent on promotion (advertising) will yield a significant amount of increases

1.6 Research Question

The following research question will be raised by the researcher.

  1. What’s the pattern of advertising message and how effective are these patterns?
  2. What are the various types of advertising media and the factors to consider before choosing a particular type?
  3. How can the advertising effectiveness be evaluated?
  4. Recommendations were based on manners through which advertising problems can be tacked and improved upon.

1.7 Development of Hypothesis

Ho 1: There is no significance difference in the mean responses of staff of 7up bottling and coca cola on types advertisement messages and its effectiveness.

Ho 2: There is no significance difference in the mean responses of staff of 7up co and coca-cola co on advertising media and factors to consider before choosing a media type.


1.8 Scope of the Study

The research work will only cover the sales and activities of soft drinks products as well as its organisations and various depots around Kaduna metropolis.


1.9 Definitions of Terms

Promotion:

Is all that which is associated with the stimulation, inducing and persuading individuals or group of people towards a particular act, ideas, information, an object or product.

Advertising:

This is any paid form of non-personal presentation of information, ideas, goods and services by an identified sponsor.

Above-The-Line-Media:

It is advertising using conventional media such as radio, television, newspapers, cinemas etc.

Below-The-Line-Media:

Advertising using other means other than the conventional methods. E.g free gifts and material.

Appropriation:

This is the money budgeted for advertising campaign.

Advertising Media:

This is used to refer to the channels used in conveying the advertising message.

Advertisement:

This is used to refer to the message being packaged and sent across to the customers or prospective customers.


Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusions and Recommendation

5.1 Restatement of the Problem

In the 70`s when the economy of Nigeria was bumming, every other sectors of the economy also benefited from the boom. Infact one of Nigeria’s head of state as at that time was known to have said that Nigeria’s problem that time was how to spend its money not how to generate it. However, the same thing cannot be said since the mid 80`s when the economy of Nigeria took a nosedive. Since then, every aspect of the economy including advertising has taking a nosedive.

Most organization, especially the few surviving ones see no need why their product must be advertised as there are no major competitors who will pose a threat to their product and survival.

Apart from the need to advertise because of lack of competitors, organization feels that its difficult to trace the effect of advert on a single product as well as its evaluation. Giles (1983) said “it is virtually impossible except in mail order selling or certain direct mail campaign to quantify exactly the contribution of advert to profit.”

Staton (1981), lay some credence to the above statements when he said one cannot attribute a given unit of sales to any specific advertisement or campaign.

Therefore, increment in any sales volume of any soft drinks could have been as a result of any other factors such as affordability and availability other than advertising effectiveness.

Based on the foregoing therefore, this study was designed to investigate the appraisal of advertising as a tool for promoting sales of soft-drinks which will also serve as a source of employment for the practitioners as well as increase the sales volume, hence profitability for the beneficiaries.


5.2 Summary of Procedures Used

This study made use of descriptive survey to solicit the opinions of staff of 7up bottling company and coca-cola bottling company on appraisal of advertising as a tool for promoting sales of soft drinks.

The study was carried out in Kaduna metropolis. The population of the study consisted of 480 respodents made up of soft-drinks manufacturers in Kaduna metropolis. From this population, convenience sampling was use in drawing up a sample of 80 subjects. Two major soft-drinks manufacturers 7up Company and coca-cola company were selected by convenience sampling technique for the study. A structured questionnaire was designed by the researcher to obtain information from the subjects of the study. 29 items of the five point likert type scale format were initially developed. These were later validated and increased to 31.

The 31 items instrument was trial-tested on two representative samples of Gaco juice and two representative samples from Kabir Juice Company here in Kaduna, which were not part of the final study. The data collected from the trial test was analyzed using crone Bach alpha (µ) to ascertain the internal consistency of each of the instrument.

The final instrument was administered on the sample size of 80 people made up of 40 each of 7up bottling company staff and 40 of coca-cola bottling company staff. The return was 100%. The administration of the instrument was carried out by the researcher with the help of two trained research assistants in the state (Kaduna) covered by the study. Data collected for the four research questions were analyzed using mean and standard deviation, while t-test was used for testing the two null hypothesis formulated to guide the study (P<. 05).


5.3 Principal Findings

The following findings were made.

  1. The types of advert messages (C= 4.30) usages and its effectiveness Musical messages rank highest among the various types of advert in use
    1. Testimonial rank next in popularity after musicals
    2. Fantasy rank least popular among the various types of messages
  2. Certain factors (C=4.48) are considered before choosing a particular media type. Cost rank highest amongst the factors considered the considerations of electronic media high and above print media come next. The level of illiteracy is high in the rural areas than urban centres. This perhaps contributes to more adverts being concentrated on the city centre than rural areas.
  3. In pre-testing (C=4.30) advert effectiveness and evaluation. Most adverts are first seen by experts and their opinion sought before beaming it to the final consumers Mechanical instruments are also put into use in testing advert and evaluating how effective it is The ability to remember an advert is given the least priority.
  4. In post-testing (C=4.49) advert effectiveness and evaluation. The level of sales volume is accepted as the most important criteria. Sales report represented by sales reps are also considered valuable but not as valuable as the sales volume is. Comparison of earnings to advertising cost is the least worries of any organization.

There is no significant difference in the mean responses of staff of 7up and coca-cola companies on the two hypotheses


5.4 Conclusion

Based on the findings of the study, the following conclusion were drawn

  1. Musical messages are more in use today than any other advertising patterns.
  2. There was no significant difference in the mean responses of staff of 7up bottling company and coca-cola bottling company on types of advertising messages and its effectiveness
  3. Certain factors are considered before choosing a particular media /type.
  4. There was no significant difference in the mean responses of staff of 7up bottling company and coca-cola bottling company on advertising media types and factors to consider before choosing a media type.
  5. In pre-testing advertising effectiveness and evaluation the opinions of experts as well as a good instruments should be used.
  6. In post-testing advertising effectiveness and evaluation, the level of sales volume as well as the report of sales representative are also valuable.

5.5 Implication of the Study

The finding of the study reveals that more emphasis is placed on using more musical messages to promote a product at the expense of others. But this may not necessarily be acceptable to others. As the brand of music used may not appeal to others. This tends to create more jobs for musicians than other such as comedians (humor).

The study also identify that most advertiser concentrate more on cost as a determining factors than any other factor. The implication of this is that any it’s only the short –term effect that is being considered. The long-term effect could be extremely higher than the short term effect. This is because the reward that would be reaped from an expensive media and message will definitely out weigh the cost that is presently incurred.

The study also believed that showing an advert before a group of advert is the best way to select (pre-test) an effective advert. This is not necessarily so. As the expert opinion is just the opinion a few out of millions of Nigerians. The opinion of other may far differ from these groups of experts. In most cases, what appeal to these experts that may influence them to buy a product may not be what will appeal to others who will eventually be the bulk purchasers.

The study also identifies sales volume increase as a criteria used to (post-test) and Judge an advert. But in the real sense, Increment in sales volume does not necessarily translate in increase in profit. This is because the increment could be as results of lower price charged. The basic economic rule that the higher the charge the more the earnings or profit made than when lower prices are charged.


5.6 Recommendations

Based on the principal findings of this study, the following recommendations are made.

  1. Effort should be made by advertiser and other agency to look the other side by diversifying into other types of advert messages. This is because I s not everyone that like music or music of a particular sort or types. Music has a way of appeal to youths more than adult. Adult would want to see testimonies of those (especially celebrities) who have used the product than any other thing.
  2. Advertisers should look beyond cost in promoting a product. A medium may be expensive to use in promoting a product, but that is in the short run, but in the long run, the organisation stand to gain more from making use of an experience solid advertising agent (but though expensive).
  3. Advertisers and advertising agency should de-emphasis on opinions of experts as the most sought after criteria in pre-testing advert effectiveness. This is because, though. Importance, expert opinions is just a fragments of the entire population opinion. Other pre-testing criteria sch as ability to recall an advert should be considered as a vital criteria for measuring pre-testing effectiveness.
  4. As an effective tool for evaluating post-testing, less emphasis should be placed on sales volume as the most important criteria. Emphasis should now be placed on earnings. This is because a company may not make much sales volume but could make a fantastic profit if the product is appropriately priced. Increase in sales volume does not necessarily translate to increase in profit.

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