Marketing Strategy

Planning and marketing

2017-2018 Student work from the Business Communications B.A. program at Southern New Hampshire University

September 2018

 

Drip and Dry

marketing plan

Drip & Dry was founded by Carrie Cloth and Fred Folder, out of their passion for coffee and multitasking. Drip & Dry opened in March 2014 in Portland, ME. Drip & Dry was created to be a laundromat that worked like a laundromat but felt like a local coffee shop. Drip & Dry’s current customer base consist of local renters without washer/dryers in their apartments. They are need of laundromats to clean their clothing in a safe environment that’s close to home. The come to Drip & Dry to launder, grab a bite to eat and work while waiting for their clothes.

Portland has a strong coffee scene. The population has 17,345 renters occupied homes and a rising population. Portland host 4 post-secondary schools. These portions of the community hold or attract the age groups and lifestyle that need the services Drip & Dry offer. (City-Data, 2017)

We are in the laundry business in a coffee-loving town. We want our customers to come for the service you need and the food you love. We are excited to expand our offerings, get the word out and engage with the community. We are partnering with Slammin’ Sandwiches and Crema Coffee in order to offer our customers the best local eats in addition to the best local laundering services. 

We are going to use the most effective marketing strategies to get the most bang for our marketing buck! Direct channels are the most effective for Drip & Dry. Using the digital branders model will focus effort towards engaging the majority of the target market, locals that live in Portland. Our marketing efforts will focus on using an immersive digital experience to cultivate loyalty and recruit new customers.

Our Executive Team

Carrie Cloth

Carrie Cloth

Co-owner

Frederica Folder

Frederica Folder

Co-owner

Sallie Sudds

Sallie Sudds

Laundry Manager

Ella Espresso

Ella Espresso

Coffee Bar Manager

Target market

Drip & Dry’s current customer base consist of local renters without washer/dryers in their apartments. They are in need of laundromats to clean their clothing in a safe environment that’s close to home. They come to Drip & Dry to launder, grab a bite to eat and work while waiting for their clothes.

The market segment demographics are as follows:

  • Aged 18-25 40% 40%
  • Aged 26-35 25% 25%
  • Percentage of local customers 75% 75%
  • Percentage of customers of both services 35% 35%

Portland has a strong coffee scene. The population has 17,345 renter occupied homes and a rising population. Portland host 4 post-secondary schools. These portions of the community hold or attract the age groups and lifestyle that need the services Drip & Dry offer. 

(City-Data, 2017)

The Budget

We will focus our efforts on using build a great online presence to ensure our potential new customers can find us. We will hire a marketing company to create a professional website with great eye-catching copy and graphics. We will use that same copy and graphics for all other promotional activities.

Budget breakdown:

Television Ad: $5,000 for local TV (30-second commercial) 

Magazine Ad: $3,000 for local magazine

Social Media Cost:

Website and SEO $10500

Copywriter $1350

Community Bulletin Boards $150 for printing of paper ads to stick on bulletin boards 

(CFA, 2014)

the business challenge

Introducing a new service

 

Our Services and Products

Currently, these are the services and amenities that will be made available to our customers;

  • Self-service washing
  • Cafe
  • Free Wi-Fi

Current State of Drip and Dry

Drip & Dry opened its doors in March 2014. Generating a steady base of repeat customers who do their laundry each week and purchase coffee daily. Drip & Dry is slated to have a loss by the close of the first year, breakeven by year two and profit in year three.

Marketing Goals

We are in the laundry business in a coffee-loving town. We plan to expand our offerings to include local favorites in our cafe to further engage with the community and increase revenue. 

We aim to achieve the followings from our marketing efforts:

  • To become the number one choice for laundry and a bite to eat
  • Partner with Slammin’ Sandwiches
  • Attract more customers through social media
  • Generate greater interest from tourist

Potential Partnerships

Drip & Dry has some great opportunities in the local environment. Here are a few:

  • Café Ole- primarily Mexican food, located three blocks from Drip & Dry (CFA, 2014)
  • Coastal Catering- prepares sandwiches, salads, and soups for corporate events, parties, and other catered functions; does not have a storefront or restaurant (CFA, 2014)
  • Slammin’ Sandwich Shop- located across town, makes to-go sandwiches that are very popular among local residents (CFA, 2014)

Mexican food is not a food commonly paired with coffee. Coastal Catering may be able to cook the food but, in a cafe, pre-packaged branded food may be a better sell. Pre-packaged has a lower cost. There will be no need to keep food hot/cold all day and have employees to serve and package the foods. Partnering with local businesses can cut the cost of having to cook food on site and hire staff to do so. 

Selecting Slammin’ Sandwiches will bring known brands and their customers into a new place. This gives customers a known brand to relate Drip & Dry to and another reason to visit. Offering sandwiches and other foods that are eaten throughout the day will address the needs of the customers during even the late hours. 

Competitive landscape

Mom or dad gets home from work, homework, among many other things must be done. They go thru their child’s classwork sent from home and see low scores on reading assignments. They know their child is a smart kid, just may need more consistent practice with the vocabulary and reading assigned at school.

Soap Bubble

Strength: Has a solid fan base and great internet reviews offers dry cleaning and wash and fold, open 7 days a week

Weakness: Small location and no food options

 

Suds and Stuff

Strength: Is well known in the community and has a large facility

Weakness: Does not offer food options

 

Squeaky Clean

Strength: Location on the main street thru town

Weakness: Small old building

 

Wash Tub II

Strength: Laundromat and dry cleaning services and it’s in a shopping center

Weakness: small, limited building space

Lookin’ Good

Strength: located in a shopping center near the residential area

Weakness: the residential area consisting mostly of homes rather than apartments with renters

 

Coffee houses are very common in Portland and many of them have very high customer reviews. According to Main Biz, The coffee scene in Portland is reaching a point of oversaturation.  (Mainbiz, 2012) Some of the local competitors on the coffee scene are:

 

Green Mountain

Strength: Strong widely known brand

Weakness: Maybe too common, it can be purchased in grocery stores

 

Arabic Coffee

Strength: location, “a quiet, rustic spot with hardwood floors and exposed brick that was the kind of place you’d want to linger to read or write”(Mainbiz, 2012), small batch, higher quality coffee and espresso

Weakness: they play into the culinary trend of knowing and telling where food and drinks come from

 

Crema

Strength: It has the appeal of independently owned local roasters and craft coffee, they wholesale

Weakness: Fairly new on the scene

 

Bard Coffee:

Strength: consistent high-quality coffee and popular latte pouring contest

Weakness: High-end coffee may not appeal to the everyday person

 

Speckled Ax

Strength: Organic coffee

Weakness: They only started selling non-organic coffee recently, High-end coffee may not appeal to the everyday person

(Mainebiz, 2012)

Drip and Dry SWOT Analysis

Strengths:

What internal characteristics does Drip & Dry have that gives it an advantage over competitors?

  • Energy-efficient washers and dryers dry clothes faster, saving the customer time.
  • They serve quality coffee and lattes 
  • Designated space for working while waiting
  • Open late
Weaknesses

What internal characteristics does Drip & Dry have that places the business at a disadvantage relative to competitors? 

  • Facilities lacking designated cafe area away from laundry for non-laundry customers
  • No breakfast food during breakfast hours
  • No dinner options for late/evening customers
  • A smaller facility in comparison to other laundromats
  • No Wi-Fi
  • The coffee served doesn’t stand out on its own in a town with a strong coffee market
Opportunities
  • The yearly tourist surge in Portland
  • Partnering with Cafe Ole, Coastal Catering or Slammin Sandwiches to offer more food options 
  • Reach out to local colleges students in need of laundry and a place to grab a bite to eat and study while waiting
  • No other laundromats in the area offer coffee shop services
Threats
  • Cost of adding food options, staff and equipment
  • Limited amount of space in the current location
  • 9 other laundromat locations in the area
  • Drip & Dry is still not very well-known in the area 
  • Local competitor, Suds and Stuff, is a well known and large facility

Sales and marketing strategy

Diversification of income is one of the strategies to help boost revenue for Drip & Dry. We want to provide a variety of services to give customers a variety of reasons to come to Drip & Dry rather than our competitors. 

Sources of Income

  • Self-service laundry
  • Sale of detergents and other laundry products
  • Sale of coffee
  • Sales of snacks and sandwiches

 

Our Unique Selling Point 

Our unique selling point “come for the service you need and the food you love”

We are the only laundromat in Portland to offer the combination of services and products we offer. We have a relaxing community environment that will encourage our customers to hang out while waiting for their laundry. We have Crema coffee and Slammin’ Sandwiches, two local favorites, right here in our facility. Our customers will definitely maximize their time when they visit Drip n’ Dry!

 Benefits of Drip and Dry

  • Availability of easy to use of high-efficiency washers and dryers
  • Availability of laundry, coffee food, snacks and area to read a book or work all in the same facility.
  • Competitive prices and discounts offered via social media
  • Professionalism and excellent customer service from our highly trained staff members.

(profitable venture, 2017)

Marketing Strategies

Strategy to market new offerings 

We are going to use the most effective marketing strategies to get the most bang for our marketing buck. Direct channels would be the most effective for Drip & Dry. A direct approach will make it easier for them to grow the brand and connection to the community. Using the digital branders model will focus effort towards engaging the majority of the target market, locals that live in Portland. Companies that use this model create an immersive digital experience, cultivate loyalty and recruit new customers “multiple experiences with the brand”.

Features and benefits of our new offerings

Fresh local coffee from Crema, local wholesale coffee. Crema is a locally known brand and can offer locally sourced quality coffee on par with local coffee shops. 

Slammin’ Sandwiches makes to-go sandwiches that are very popular among local residents (CFA, 2014) Slammin’ Sandwiches will bring known brands and their customers into a new place. This gives customers a known brand to relate Drip & Dry to and another reason to visit. Offering sandwiches and other foods that are eaten throughout the day will address the needs of the customers throughout the day.

These new offering will attract working locals on their way to/from work and need a bite to eat and/or to take care of their laundry. This will increase our numbers in the 26-35 age group.

Marketing the food offerings 

Here are the ways we intend to market our new offerings:

Social Media:

  • Social media is a daily habit for most Americans, especially in Drip & Dry’s target market. 
  • Social media is a low-cost way to get the word out, send deals and news about the company and build the brand.
  • Social media can reach locals and tourists as well.
  • Engage in blogging and make use of the platform to promote our Laundromat business

How: We will hire a marketing company to create content and manage our accounts. 

Community Boards and Flyers:

  • Community Boards are a great way to reach locals. It is another low-cost option to make the community aware of what Drip & Dry offers that others don’t.
  • Flyers are another local option that can be posted within places like college dorms and apartment complexes.

How:  We will have a member of the team post flyers in strategic places around town.

 

Online Videos

  • can give potential and current customers a peek into the company. This can increase the appeal and awareness of the brand. 
  • Online videos can serve as commercials at a much lower cost.

(YP, 2014)

How: We will give demo videos on how to use our machines and behind the scenes short videos. This can be done on-site with a local videographer.

Email marketing

  • Leverage on direct email marketing strategy and bulk SMS to advertise and promote our Laundromat business.

How: We will employ the same marketing company to manage social media, email marketing and our website to ensure consistent brand messaging and lower cost. 

 Mobile apps

  • Design an interactive mobile website
  • Place ads on Facebook
  • Engage in blogging 
  • Make use of mobile apps to promote our brand

How: We will employ the same marketing company to manage social media, email marketing and our website to ensure consistent brand messaging and lower cost. 

Conclusion

In conclusion, Drip and Dry are showing great promise. We are geared up to offer our customers a great environment to come for the service and stay for the food you love. Our goals are to become the number one choice for laundry and a bite to eat by partnering with Slammin’ Sandwiches and Crema Coffee. Our target market of local renters is going to love our new offerings. We want to reach out to our community with a new website and social media campaign to get the word out and customers in. This plan is a perfect starting point to propel Drip & Dry forward and accomplishing our goals.

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