Friday, December 10, 2010

Brand Asset Valuator (Bav) - Carl's Junior

The Brand Asset Valuator (BAV) model states that there are four key pillars (components) of brand equity. Using the four pillars, evaluate the brand equity of Carl's Junior.


What sets Carl´s Jr.® apart from other fast food restaurants (brand equity) is its emphasis (product differentiation) that their burgers (bigger portioned) are charbroiled over an open flame (taste), the free flow of drinks, along with a condiment bar, 14 types of sauces and a range of salads; giving it competitive edge over competitor offerings by providing something different. Thus, contributing to its reputation for great tasting food, and the company has since evolved into one of the major players in the quick service industry. (Carl´s Jr.® Singapore 2006)

As a result, Carl´s Jr.® is able to command premium prices, unlike competitors such as Macdonald’s and Burger King: from $4.20 for its cheapest burger (Carl's Catch) and up to $8.50 for its expensive burger (Double Guacamole Bacon Cheeseburger) (Mak 2005). The steadily increasing number of outlets in Singapore (from 2 outlets in 2005 to its current 4 outlets), is an indicator of brand vitality (Carl´s Jr.® Singapore 2006).


Carl´s Jr.® has managed to establish itself as “the place to go for juicy, premium quality charbroiled burgers” (Carl´s Jr.® Singapore 2006). The appeal of bigger (portioned) hamburgers... Read more>>

Implementing an Integrated Marketing Communication Plan - Carl's Junior

Assume that Carl's Junior does not provide comprehensive brand advertising and promotion support to your franchise operation. Suggest ways in which you can implement an integrated marketing communication plan to build brand equity for your franchise. In your recommendations, you should also consider how much effort you would like to devote to push and pull strategy.

As Carl´s Jr.® is a contractual vertical marketing system (fast food franchise), push strategy (generating more sales) would be mostly implemented by the franchisor whose intermediaries are the franchisees (e.g. discounts when purchasing from suppliers, incentives when more sales are achieved etc...). Thus, effort should be concentrated on pull strategy to attract new customers and retain old customers.

Carl´s Jr.® appeals to consumers who have (growing) affluence, want a different burger experience, and are willing to spend a premium for that different experience. Although the brand equity (popularity) of Carl´s Jr.® has been increasing over the past 4 years, more can be done to reach out to a wider target audience who are yet unaware of Carl´s Jr.® brand of food; increasing brand equity (awareness) and sales (growth).

(Marketing) Public relations with a pull strategy would be the most appropriate method to promote of Carl´s Jr.® image and generate interest in its products. Thus, in order to generate interest and increase brand awareness (e.g. credibility) the following marketing communication tools would be used (Kotleretal. 2006):

1. Advertising

a. (Persuasive) TV Ads (one of the most powerful mediums)

i. Builds brand knowledge (awareness) by positioning Carl´s Jr.® points-of-parity (e.g. big servings of tasty charbroiled burgers)

ii. One example would be occasional product placement in movies and/or television, which would further expose the brand (through cameo appearances). Thus, integrating the Carl´s Jr.® brand into everyday life of consumers in an unconventional (innovative) way, as opposed to traditional TV advertisements.

b. (Informative and Persuasive) Internet Ads

This method will reach out to a portion of the potential target audience that is most unlikely to read newspapers, or be affected by TV ads...Read more>>

Choosing a Consumer Franchise - Carl's Junior

If you were to choose a consumer franchise to operate, what would it be? Why? Ensure that emphasis is placed on marketing related factors when providing the reasons for your choice.
According to Food & Beverage Franchising (2003), Singaporeans expenditure on food made up 21.3% of the total expenditure, and it was reflected that there was a preference for eating out over home-cooked food: expenditure on cooked food products accounted for 57% of the total food expenditure. In addition, Tay (2005) states that in an ACNielsen survey carried out in October 2004, “Singapore was ranked fourth in Asia Pacific for the percentage of population that eats at fast-food restaurants at least once a week”. Therefore, based on the sustainability of the food industry and popularity of fast food in Singapore, I would choose to operate a Carl´s Jr.® franchise.

Today, the steady franchise growth of Carl's Jr.® is evidenced with “1,101 Carl's Jr. restaurants operating in 12 US states and 5 foreign countries”. From a Singapore (local) perspective, given the fact (trend) that it has since tripled (from 2 outlets in 2005 to its current 6 outlets) in Singapore, makes it a lucrative (niche) business opportunity. Its ceaseless focus on quality, service, cleanliness, and product innovation, gives it a competitive edge over competitors; it has “long been known as the place to go for juicy, premium quality charbroiled burgers”. (Carl´s Jr.® Singapore 2006)

“Carl´s Jr.® is a wholly-owned subsidiary of CKE Restaurants, Inc., a publicly traded company listed on the New York Stock Exchange” (, and has “been satisfying the tastes of hungry young eaters for decades, ever improving their products and services along the way” (Nation's Restaurant News 2007). The Carl´s Jr.® franchise is a contractual vertical marketing system “with an emphasis on franchisee support, innovative business systems and sheer dominance of the quick-service burger market” (Nation's Restaurant News 2007). Thus, by teaming with one of the largest and most experienced company around (Carl´s Jr.® Singapore 2006), it provides security and assurance to the franchisee as (staff) training and support (managerial advice) is available in starting the business... Read more>>

The Sims 3: Traits Guide

The Sims 3 traits enable your Sims to have personalities that are unique and diverse, which can be interesting as well as entertaining. Sims in the game can have a maximum of 5 traits, which are further divided into 4 categories: mental, physical, social and lifestyle. There are 7 stages in a Sims life: baby, toddler, child, teen, young adult, adults and elder.

When your Sim is in a good mood while pregnant, you can select 1 trait for the baby when it is born, else it is selected randomly. As babies, toddlers, children and teens grow; they will be given traits based on their happiness (if they are happy enough you will be able to choose the trait for them, else the traits are most likely to be randomly assigned). However, when you are creating a young adult, adult or senior Sim in the create Sim mode, you have the opportunity to give them the traits you prefer before starting the game.

There is a wide range of traits that you can choose for your Sims: to be brave, cowards, heavy sleepers or slobs. Each of the traits will impact your Sims in regards to their lives, socialization, happiness, choices, skills and careers. There are metal traits like artistic, genius, green thumb and neurotic, or physical traits like heavy sleepers or slobs. Traits determine/affect how quickly your Sims skills develop, what they enjoy and how they relate to other Sims, greatly impacting their social interactions. There are also social traits like charismatic, dislikes children, good sense of humour and no sense of humour.

It would be good to note that a Sim cannot have opposing traits (e.g. great sense of humour and no sense of humour). Hence, choosing one trait could render its opposite obsolete. There are also traits that deal with lifestyle such as angler, frugal, kleptomaniac and vegetarian.

Each trait opens up different social interactions for your Sim and will affect the speed and success of learning a skill. For example, a Sim who is a workaholic will be very upset if they miss work, while a loner can last longer than Sims without any socialization. A flirtish Sim would be able to use different romantic interactions far sooner into a relationship than other Sims, and their flirting will usually be well-received. And an artistic Sim can paint and play the guitar much better than others.

Finally, the traits that a Sim’s has will help determine their lifetime wish. A Sim may want to grow the perfect garden if he/she has a green thumb, or raise a big family if family-orientated. In addition to selecting traits for you Sims, you are also able to select your Sim’s favourite food, colour and music. Voices of your Sims can also be adjusting via pitch to further enhance your Sim, making it a unique and interesting character.

Here is a list with descriptions of some personality traits:
  • Absent-Minded: Often get lost in their own thoughts and forget what they are doing or where they are going.
  • Ambitious: like that name suggests.
  • Angler: Enjoy fishing and will be more successful at getting more... Read more>>

Korean Drama Review: Mary Stayed Out All Night

Mary Stayed Out All Night is the manhwa-adapted Korean drama that gets the heroine tangled up in not one but TWO contract marriages. The female lead is Moon Geun-young, while the other two male leads are Jang Geun-seok and Jung-in Kim Jae-wook.

The story revolves around Moon Geun-young’s character named Wee Mae-Ri (or Mary), who the daughter of a failed businessman and falls into a love triangle with an indie-band singer Kang Mu-Gyul (Jang Geun-seok) and a perfect chaebol (Kim Jae-wook).

Mae-Ri’s father has been failing in all of his business ventures due to his gullible character. This time he has fallen prey to several scammers, landing him and Mae-Ri in a mountain of debt. The first episode starts off with the debt collectors arrive to demand repayment, Mary tries to fend them off with a lie, while Dad escapes through a window.

At 24 years old, Mae-Ri’s only a semester shy of university graduation, but she has had to take a leave of absence from school because she cannot afford the tuition due to her family situation. Furthermore, she’s been avoiding her friends because she can’t spend money on entertainment. Sso it is a rare occasion that’ll bring her out to meet them. However, she decides to drive her friends for some cash when they call her to meet up. The trio decide to hang out, since they haven’t seen her in ages, and they decide to try the clubs in Hongdae, which is where Mae-Ri meets Mu-Gyul, the lead vocalist of an indie band, when she accidentally hits him with the car. Not knowing who he is, and fearing that he would claim damages from her, she insists that he sign a contract to say confirm that he is not seriously injured. However, Mu-Gyul assumes that she is a persistent fan, when she starts to stalk him to get him to sign... Read more>>

Benefits of Anti-virus Software

More often than not, if you for not have any anti-software on your computer and do nto regularly scan your computer for viruses, your computer would be prone to virus infectionsThere are many options for scanning and curing viruses – free software, free online scans, downloadable trial versions of software, and software which you may purchase. (e.g. Norton Anti-virus, AVG, McAfee etc…)

Anit-virus software scan your computer for viruses in real-time, meaning that as your computer receives files, the software checks the files for viruses, or the current state of the computer (e.g. files already on your computer). Once installed, the software will constantly monitor the computer files to search for viruses and alert you if any should be found.

It is important that you update your anti-virus software on a regular basis, to enable the software can detect all of the newly found viruses.

Below what to look out for in an Anti-virus Software:
Platform (operation system) Relevance, most software packages are platform specific.

ICSA Certification
The International Computer Security Association has established accurate means for comparing anti-virus detection rates. Only purchase software bearing the ICSA certification seal... Read more>>

Dos and Don'ts to Minimize Viruses on Your Computer

Below is a list of Dos and Don’ts:

* Update your anti-virus software on a regular basis or frequently check your system with an online virus scanner.
* Disable preview screens when using Eudora or Microsoft Outlook.
* Scan disks and zip disks with your anti-virus software before using them.
* Backup important files regularly.
* Use personal firewall software to prevent unauthorized Internet access to and from your computer.
* Read the manual of your anti-virus software. Most anti-virus software are very complex, with dozens of settings. Reading the manual helps you get the most out of the anti-virus software.
* Run a virus scan on your entire computer when you computer starts to perform strangely
* Be careful about disks or external peripherals. Run a virus scan on it before you begin working on it as not everyone has anti-virus protection.

* Use disks from an untrustworthy source.
* Download files from a site or a person that you do not trust... Read more>>

What If You Suspect Your Computer is Infected

If your computer is accessible to someone other then yourself, it will be useful if they know the dos and don’ts of using a (shared) computer. Otherwise, you alone taking the necessary precautions would not help protect your computer from viruses.

For example, many E-mail viruses are spread by sending itself to everyone in someone’s address book. So if the E-mail text does not sound like the sender, or you were not expecting the attachment, it is best to delete the message immediately.

Also, if you suspect your computer is infected with a virus (you have opened a suspicious email attachment and your computer is suddenly crashing or running slowly, you receive error messages whenever you start up your computer or try to launch an application), immediately disconnect your computer from the internet... Read more>>

Saturday, December 04, 2010

External Analysis of AirAsia

Industry Analysis

An industry analysis was performed to assess the budget airline industry.

1. Bargaining Power of Supplier
Overall, power of supplier is high as there are limited (availability of) suppliers (only Boeing and Airbus), the switching cost is high (i.e. airplanes and their maintenance are costly), and there are few substitutes for airplanes (i.e. air travel covers longer distances in a shorter period of time).

2. Bargaining Power of Buyer
As there are almost no switching costs for customers switching from one budget airline to another, the bargaining power of buyer is moderate...Read more>>

Can AirAsia Sustain Its Success?

Based on the external analysis, demand for budget airlines is expected to grow rapidly, attracting more competition and increasing the degree of rivalry. The attractiveness and profitability will attract many full-service airlines to launch their own budget airlines.

Due the Southeast Asian region having the lowest rate of air travel per capita among the other regions indicates a strong potential for growth. As low prices alone cannot sustain AirAsia, it has to maximize its operational efficiency to maintain its competitive advantage (i.e. being the leader in budget airlines) in the advent of... Read more>>

Strategic Actions Adopted by AirAsia

With cost leadership, a set of actions are integrated to produce goods/services with features that are acceptable to customers at the lowest cost, relative to that of competitors. Although AirAsia’s business strategy is centered on cost leadership, it targets specific markets (i.e. price sensitive customers needing short-haul fights), selling its product/services below the average industry prices to gain market share. Hence, it can be categorized into focused cost leadership. AirAsia modified the low-cost airline model and adopted the following strategic actions to lower their costs rel...Read more>>>