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They were formed as an amateur club in 1878, but became professional in 1936. After winning the Southern League and finishing third the following season, they were elected to the Football League on May 30th 1938. But have recently been relegated from division one and now need a new marketing mix to help them maintain profits.

Location

The stadium is situated on Portman Rd. and has been there since the club started and is constantly being done up to maintain quality.

A overhead map of the stadium located at Portman road.

Aim of this coursework

The aim of this coursework is to reinvent the marketing mix for Ipswich Town Football Club after they were relegated from Division One and they are now afraid of loosing profits.

Research Plan

We are not sure what they used in the past for their Marketing Mix as many companies do not like to release this information as this may be passed on to competitors.

Their current marketing mix is no good as they have recently been relegated so are looking for ideas and are not willing to rely on their previous marketing mix.

I have also decided to rely on secondary data, which will help me also word my questionnaire. This will also help me to determine form previous data what they had for their previous marketing mix and to determine what happened before when other teams have been relegated, with this data in mind I should be able to decide what to do to help them retain their profits even after being relegated. I can also begin assessing the secondary data now to ensure that I can add to my questionnaire with some better questions to ask and some greater understanding of what will happen. I have found 6 different kinds of secondary research all of which come form The Sir Norman Chester Centre for Football Research.

1.) I have received some data on the total spent by season tickets holder by team and have found that the top two teams are situated around London. As 70% of supporters support local clubs this means people in London are more likely to buy season tickets than people in the north-west as that is one of the poorer areas of the UK. With ITFC being in East Anglia we should be aiming for some from social group A, some from social group C1 and most form social group B.

2.) However despite this the best stadium to visit was voted Anfield in Liverpool whereas the worst were the ones positioned around London.

3.) The percentage of season ticket holder that earn more than � 50,000 – the top five teams are locate around London and together hold more than 40% of the entire share.

4.) For a good game man 82% of people considered price to be a deciding factor, followed by comfort at 69%, loud crowd at 62%, shout and scream at 59% and good travel and parking at 45%

With this in mind I have decided to find out what people currently think of their new strategies after being relegated and comparing that to what they used before this in order to gain of feel of what the consumer wants from the club. To do this I will use questionnaires (Fig 1).

From this I can ascertain what they have done since being relegate to help them so far. I will get this information myself over the internet and various sources such as free handouts (Fig 2), as well as this I will also rely on the information from the questionnaires.

I will also look at what other previously relegated teams have done in the past to help their profits stabilise and if they got back into division one that would also help team morale, supporters morale and would boost profits overall.

Before making my questionnaire I will have to consider what I want to be asking and how this information could actually help ITFC, so some of my questions will have top have qualitative data and some will need quantitative answers. The quantitative answers will be easy to add up and hopefully get an overall view for and the qualitative questions will allow people to diversify their answers without pushing them in one direction or another.

After receiving data back form the questionnaires I will have to consider how to make that data into a marketing mix. By considering the 4 P’s so I have decided form this data by using the following heading to work out where most effort should be placed once I have the research back. The qualitative research will also tell me what else I could do whereas the quantitative data will also help me to ensure how much effort should be placed where.

Product

– Entertainment – games – tickets – price change before and after

– Replica kits sold

– Food and drink – corporate entertainment

– Merchandising

– Programs

– Academy – coaching over summer holidays for good publicity EG U12 and U14

Price

– Shares

– Sponsorship

– Special deals – promotions

– Ticket prices

– Price change overall

Promotion

– Fathers day promotions and similar

– Internet promotions – save money

– One free ticket over SGR radio and EADT

– County shows

– Sell tickets through PE teachers in schools

Place

– Stadium

– Internet selling – save on money

– Shops where merchandising is sold

Having done some primary research in the form of a questionnaire as it is easy to use and you can customise it to suit your needs. I have come up with some conclusions from this data. I must however consider that this research only reflects 20 people’s views and not the entirety of ITFC supporters, merely the ones I could stop to ask questions.

That most people come up with their ITFC special deals via SGR radio or the internet so in the future if I was to remarket ITFC I would use these as ways of getting word out about an special deals I might have. Yet the problem with this is that the ITFC website is not really good for gathering information

I have also done some research on how much ITFC supporters earn per annum as this could reflect how much they might spend at matches on extras and after the match on merchandise.

Having now done a basic analysis I have decided to do a SWOT analysis, which will help me determine any strengths or weaknesses within the club, and any exteriors opportunities or threats there may be. This shows that most ITFC supporters earn between �20,000 – �29,000, with some others earning above this figure.

I have also recorded how much people spend on merchandise and on extras during the match.

This graph shows most people spend between �20 – �29 per match on extras.

The one below shows how much people spend on merchandise before and after the match.

I can use this information in order to achieve maximum profits for the marketing mix I will have to design for ITFC.

SWOT Analysis

Interior

Strengths

– Have been in division one before

– Have had good previous marketing strategies

– Have a well established team

– Have a good fan base

Weaknesses

– Recently relegated from division one and replaced by Norwich FC

– Bad website hosting

– Few promotional offers

Opportunities

– They could use their team to regain a position in the first division.

Threats

– Government are threatening with a tax on football

– Increasing footballers wage

– ITV digital collapsed – major football sponsor.

Exterior

After this I will use PEST analysis to get a greater understanding of any exterior problems or strengths there may be, as this will help me even more to come up with a marketing plan.

PEST Analysis

Political

– New government policies affecting how much footballers get paid

– Health and Safety aspects are getting tougher as there is more and more football hooliganism

– Previous health and safety toughness have resulted in entire stadiums being redesigned.

Economic

– New Health and Safety laws could influence the club greatly at a time when they need as much money as possible

– Footballers wage laws could mean trading for cheaper players or players going on strike.

– Football sells well at the moment with record sells for club memorabilia and merchandise over the country as well as England’s performance in the last world cup

Social Change

– Football is very popular at the moment and this is backed up by the increase in media attention to it and the record sales of merchandise.

– This indicated very little is likely to change quickly, probably the opposite as it will increase creating greater pressure on ITFC

Technology

– The collapse of ITV digital has affected football as a whole and will continue to do so as they had strong links with the football world.

– The media attention to football will cause a greater strain on ITFC.

– The rise in Sky and digital entertainment will help football by providing more interactive things.

The PEST analysis outlines any problems I MIGHT have in the future when I produce a marketing mix plan therefore I have to watch these influences when I plan for the future.

In the future I will have to reinvent ITFC marketing mix yet this can be very risky so in order to reduce the risk taken I will have to use Ansoff’s matrix in order to reduce the risk for reinventing ITFC.