Our Strategy and Implementation turn on three points:
Our marketing strategy will aggressively exploit our competitors' weaknesses. During the start-up phase, we will run large ads in the business section of the local newspaper, asking, "Are you fed up with poor customer service for your computer needs?" These ads will focus on our advantages, including on-site service, competitive rates, and quick response and turn-around times. They will announce our opening date, and include a coupon for free diagnostic service for the first 20 customers.
We will follow up on these opening ads with a smaller direct-marketing campaign to small business owners, with lists drawn from the local Chamber of Commerce. Jack will use his contacts with business customers from his years as a manager to create a "buzz" about this new business.
We will continue periodic advertisements, including several promotions (discounts, free diagnosis, etc.) throughout the first year. We expect a small but steady response from home PC users who see our ads elsewhere, but will also run monthly ads in sections other than the business one.
We will offer a promotion during the first 90 days of business to generate business traffic and word of mouth. Our promo is Spyware removal on any desktop PC for $70 including tax and software. Spyware is a huge problem for a lot of residential and small business customers, and the offer should draw a lot of interest.
Our marketing strategy will generate customer inquiries. We will close the deals by offering an outstanding service and a very reasonable price. Happy customers generate repeat business and word of mouth. Our toll free number is operational 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and from 8am to 9pm, I will be available to answer calls. At other times, or when I am on the phone, an answering service we have hired will catch callers and give them an estimated wait time for a call-back; this is another step towards delivering a complete solution to our customers.
Sales forecast figures are based on industry figures for the typical growth of a start-up and reflect repeat business generated through meeting customer needs.
The sales strategy is a prediction of controllable growth for the first year. PC Repair will focus on quality and attention to detail to avoid some potential pitfalls encountered by many new businesses. The predicted growth is moderate in the home PC market and in the small business arena. However, with aggressive advertising and word of mouth, this will increase. Our agressive TV advertising will increase our residential and small business customer base as well as word of mouth within the first year. Within a few months we will have the need for additional employees to handle the work load. At that time, we will move into a leased space with additional square footage, and buy a company vehicle to help with the on-site calls.
Our competitors average 75+ calls a month. Given that our advertising will be aggressive, we expect the same results. The sales forecast is conservative, which gives us a chance to gauge our experience and adjust the plan accordingly.
We will service all of Ramsford-on-Bitstream, and the surrounding area. We expect that the majority of our jobs will be performed in the immediate town area. A service technician can perform an average of 3 jobs per day. Our sales forecast predictions are less than that. With our agressive advertising campaign we expect nominal growth. We predict it will take a few weeks for the marketing to settle in with customers. However, we are going to offer a promo for our services which should generate some substantial results.
The one element of sales not represented in the table below is direct costs for our maintenance contracts. We estimate these costs at 12% of sales revenue, but expect a delayed occurrence - that is, we will sell maintenance contracts starting in February, but do not expect to actually perform maintenance on computers guaranteed under them for the first few months. We will incur more and more costs from these as time goes on, and the computers age - most of the service in a maintenance contract is performed within the last quarter of the specified period. Projections for the direct costs for these contracts can be found in the Profit and Loss Table, as other costs of sales.
Our milestones, listed in the table below, outline the major events that will promote, as well as insure the success of PC Repair and keep it a going concern well into the future. We will measure our success in meeting these milestones every month, and adjust the plan to keep up with our objectives. Name recognition, in particular, is very important to breaking into this market - we will conduct a survey by calling 200 randomly selected small businesses from the Chamber of Commerce listings on the specified dates and asking them whether they have heard of PC Repair, and if so, what their impression is of our service. If any of the respondents have actually used our services, we will elicit feedback on their experience with us, and suggestions for improvement. We will also ask if they would recommend us to a colleague.