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CARBS Business Review

Brand Lift through Societal Marketing: Evidence from Gourmet Foods, Pakistan

Dr. Muhammad Bilal Majid

15 June, 2023

Brand Lift through Societal Marketing Evidence from Gourmet Foods, Pakistan

Traditional marketing approaches primarily focus on meeting consumer wants and needs. However, societal marketing goes beyond that by considering the long-term benefits for both the organization and society as a whole. Its aim is to achieve sustainable competitive advantage, a positive brand image, and strong customer relationships.

 

Societal marketing is based on the principle of societal wellbeing. It emphasizes that organizations should make strategic marketing decisions while considering the demands of the organization, the needs of consumers, and, most importantly, the long-term interests of society. It is a technique that brands can use to their advantage. Societal marketing is an approach where businesses not only concentrate on achieving their business objectives but also take into account the welfare of society as a whole.

 

When a company demonstrates its commitment to social and environmental issues, it can improve its brand reputation and image. Consumers tend to favor and support businesses that actively work to improve society through social responsibility. Brands that engage in societal marketing often receive positive word-of-mouth and media attention.

 

Societal marketing initiatives can help foster stronger relationships with customers. When people see that a brand genuinely cares about the well-being of society, they are more likely to develop an emotional connection and loyalty towards that brand. This can lead to repeat purchases and advocacy among customers.

 

There is a growing segment of consumers who actively seek out brands that align with their personal values and beliefs. By engaging in societal marketing, brands can attract and retain these socially-conscious consumers, thereby expanding their customer base. Societal marketing can be a powerful way for brands to differentiate themselves from competitors. By highlighting their social initiatives and impact, brands can stand out in the market and position themselves as leaders in corporate social responsibility.

 

It is crucial for brands to approach societal marketing authentically and ensure that their actions align with their values and the needs of the communities they serve. By doing so, brands can enhance their reputation, build long-term success, and contribute to a better society.

 

Gourmet Foods Corporation has successfully implemented the strategy of societal marketing multiple times. Gourmet Foods is a Pakistani food retail chain based in Lahore. It was launched in 1987 by Mr. Muhammad Nawaz Chathha with a single location in Ichra. However, it initially faced challenges and was eventually shut down due to a lack of support. In 1992, it was restarted in a different location in a Muslim town, and since then, Gourmet has experienced remarkable growth. From its launch in 1992, the company demonstrated an astonishing annual revenue growth of more than 25% until 2006. Recently, Gourmet reported a 65% increase in yearly revenue from 2006 to 2023.

 

Gourmet Foods utilizes multiple societal marketing techniques. It supports the needy by opening alms houses or “langar-khana” in Lahore that offer free food. The company also sponsors various community events and provides financial assistance to improve the lives of community members. Moreover, Gourmet cares for the well-being and development of its employees by providing a safe and healthy work environment, training and skill development programs, work-life balance, and fair and ethical employment practices.

 

These initiatives, including the langar-khana, community sponsorships, and employee well-being, have created a positive word-of-mouth among the people at large, positioning Gourmet Foods as a brand serving the betterment of Pakistani society. This has had a significant impact on Gourmet Foods’ brand equity, resulting in a 65% annual increase in sales revenue.

Dr. Muhammad Bilal Majid

Dr. Muhammad Bilal Majid, currently serving as an Assistant Professor, Quality Circle Head Marketing & Supply Chain Management, PhD program convener and curriculum review & SDG advisor at Ch. Abdul Rehman Business School (CARBS) “The Superior University Lahore, Pakistan”. He has earned PhD degree in business and management from “Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin (UniSZA), Malaysia”. He is an HEC approved supervisor.

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Disclaimer

Please note that all opinions, views, statements, and facts conveyed in the article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the official policy or position of Chaudhry Abdul Rehman Business School (CARBS). CARBS assumes no liability or responsibility for any errors or omissions in the content. When interpreting and applying the information provided in the article, readers are advised to use their own discretion and judgement.

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