Pink Lady Bug Designs

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Specialty Gifts Business Plan

Strategy and Implementation Summary

Strategy is focus: focusing on our strengths and away from our weaknesses. The key elements of our business strategy include:

  • Developing brand recognition through exposure to community and business leaders participating in fund-raising events. We will also gain endorsement from national health organizations who are close to the causes that we represent. From there, our focus is to offer products to the various segments that answer to their specific needs.

  • Focusing on offering products to the various segments that answer to their specific needs.
    • The fund-raiser groups either want to buy distinctive products in volume at a lower price point or want a product that is more elegant and still distinctive, yet affordable.
    • The Family and Friends group needs are focused on an affordable gift that a child can buy or a fine quality box of "one-of-a-kind" chocolates. Products offered to the various segments will be positioned and priced to satisfy the needs of the customers.
    • The Medical Community group wants products that raise the spirits of their patients. The pharmaceutical companies allocate resources to support the physicians.

  • Receiving endorsements through the American Cancer Society. We also plan to have a celebrity endorsement of our products.

  • Building our marketing infrastructure so that we can eventually reach a large population base.

5.1 Strategy Pyramid

Our main strategy is brand recognition. It is paramount to our success that the market recognizes our product and our causes.

The tactics under brand recognition include: exposure of our products and causes to community and business leaders; alliances with national health associations; celebrity spokesperson to represent our cause; national advertising.

Our programs will include: development of a database of event planners and coordinators nation-wide; mailing product information to each group along with product samples; attending women's health conferences and medical conclaves and trade shows; contacting celebrities who may be interested; enlisting the services of a professional marketing and promotions firm; utilization of the Internet to expose our products.

5.2 Value Proposition

Pink Lady Bug Chocolates will be positioned as a premium value product - products that cannot be found elsewhere in the market, yet are affordable. We will present each of our segments with products that are high-quality and unique that bring attention and focus to the applicable cause.

5.3 Competitive Edge

Without a doubt the primary competitive advantage will be our passion for helping others and the work-ethic and energy we will bring to the business. The unique selling point in the Pink Lady Bug story will help others to identify with the brand. Based upon two years worth of research, we feel confident that we will be the first to market with our products.

We feel very confident that by being first to market, maintaining close alliances with the women's health organizations, in addition to medical and pharmaceutical communities, we will establish a strong competitive advantage. These strategies combined with the willingness to continually research our market segment's needs will continue to keep us at the pinnacle of our business.

Innovative ideas for marketing and product development will only enhance our success. By maintaining a business strategy that takes advantage of the experience and expertise of our suppliers and allies, we will be able to keep our overhead and capital expenses low and channel resources towards research and development, as well as marketing. 

5.4 Marketing Strategy

Our marketing strategy will focus on four segments. Those segments are described in the following sub topics.

  • The plan will benchmark our objectives for sales promotion, mass selling, and personal selling.

Phase One of our marketing effort will focus on the "Fund-raisers" and the "Medical Community." We will implement a strategy that gives each of these segments personalized service. This means our marketing resources will be centered around both direct contact by the company president and printed product sheets and product samples that are delivered to the event coordinators, pharmaceutical representatives and physician groups.

A larger portion of the marketing budget will apportioned to national advertising and promotion in order to deal with the "Family and Friends" segment.

  • The marketing budget will be equal to a minimum of 5% of sales and no more than 15%.
  • Marketing promotions will be consistent with the Mission Statement.

The "Interested By-standers" will be drawn by our attractive displays, beautiful packaging and collectible products.

5.4.1 Promotion Strategy

A mix of promotion strategies will be used that are dependent upon the particular segment. We have budgeted $10,000 in our start-up costs to enlist the services of a professional marketing and promotion firm to assist us with the most effective method of reaching the various markets.

Linda Herter has already made numerous contacts with national organizations regarding their interest in our products: She will continue to conduct these solicitations. Free product samples will be sent to interested groups. We have also budgeted travel expense in the start-up costs and ongoing operational expenses for Linda to attend national conferences for these groups in addition to national conferences for professional medical groups.

5.4.2 Distribution Strategy

Bissinger French Confectioners will handle all distribution of product through their St. Louis plant. Web page orders can also be handled directly through their system. 

5.4.3 Marketing Programs

Our most important marketing program is re-establishing contacts with organizations and event planners for Breast Cancer Awareness events and functions. Linda Herter will be responsible, with a budget of $3,000 and a milestone date of the 15th of July. This program is intended to make original contacts aware that we have a new product line and attract new customers. Achievement should be measured by securing sales of $129,000 by the end of December 2002.

5.4.4 Positioning Statement

Pink Lady Bug Designs' products give the customer a high-quality product that has true value and also allows them to contribute toward a cause. For fund-raising function coordinators who are looking for a distinctive product to make a lasting impression, Pink Lady Bug Chocolates will more than meet that need. Currently, those event coordinators do not have such a distinctive product.

5.4.5 Pricing Strategy

Our pricing strategy will be developed by comparing our products to other like products and then taking into consideration what the market will bear. We are selling a unique product for a specific reason -- to raise money for benevolent programs. Because of this approach, we will be able to price our product slightly higher than comparable products in the market.

5.5 Sales Strategy

Sales will primarily be handled by Linda Herter. Leads will be developed through direct mailing and sales will be generated through follow-up calls. The Web page will also be used for customers to place orders directly -- orders placed through the Web page will be directed to Bissinger's Web page.

We will also develop fund-raising programs with specific groups who choose to sell our products as a fund-raiser. Ordinarily funds would go into specific accounts to be directed to pre-determined organizations or programs, such as the Secret Sisters Society. In certain cases, portions of the proceeds can be directed to the group that is selling the products.

A key feature of our alliances with other organizations is the inclusion of a two-way link between Pink Lady Bug Designs' website and the various organizations' websites. We have already received agreements from the American Cancer Society and states Breast and Cervical Cancer Programs to form two-way links.

5.5.1 Sales Forecast

The following table and chart give a run-down on forecasted sales. The months for the highest potential sales coincide with October (and the two months prior) for National Breast Cancer Awareness, May for Mother's Day, December for Christmas, and February for Valentine's Day.

Year Two and beyond includes the development of baskets and collectible plush animals that will be offered as a premium and offered on a limited basis, a la Longaberger's annual Breast Cancer Awareness Basket.

Sales Forecast
Year 1 Year 2 Year 3
Chocolate - Favor $42,785 $73,630 $225,865
Chocolates - Medium Favor/Gift $79,720 $149,700 $285,480
Chocolate - Premium $77,948 $100,433 $952,635
Plush Collectible $0 $99,900 $99,900
Gift Basket $0 $0 $25,000
Other $0 $0 $0
Total Sales $200,453 $423,663 $1,588,880
Direct Cost of Sales Year 1 Year 2 Year 3
Chocolate - Favor $21,397 $36,815 $112,933
Chocolates - Medium Favor/Gift $39,859 $74,850 $142,740
Chocolate - Premium $38,977 $50,217 $476,318
Plush Collectible $0 $49,950 $49,950
Gift Basket $0 $0 $12,500
Other $0 $0 $0
Subtotal Direct Cost of Sales $100,233 $211,832 $794,441

5.5.2 Sales Programs

We will not take any sales incentives for the first full year to ensure positive cash flows. Any extra net profit will be held as cash with distributions being paid to investors. Once we have established profitability, we will offer sales incentives as well as profit sharing.

5.6 Strategic Alliances

Alliances and synergy with various suppliers and women's health organizations will be critical to our success. For Phase One of our plan, partnering with Bissinger's French Confectioner's to provide us product at a "better than wholesale" rate, along with logistics and fulfillment solutions, will allow us to make a healthy margin to keep the company viable.

An endorsement from the American Cancer Society and Ovarian Cancer National Alliance for our products and programs will help with national exposure and developing fund-raising event contacts.

We will work with the Susan G. Komen Foundation -- the leader in breast cancer awareness and prevention programs -- to form an alliance that supports both their programs and ours.

Linda Herter is a charter member and driving force behind the Secret Sisters Society, a soon to be nationally recognized program that enlists benefactors and sponsors to fund under-served women's programs. This will create a new market for Pink Lady Bug Designs products.

We will also strongly pursue alliances with pharmaceutical companies. In exchange for their sponsorships and underwriting of costs for various fund-raisers and goodwill products at treatment centers and physicians offices, we will give recognition by allowing them to use our name and include their company logo on our promotional materials and packaging. 

We are in the initial phase of developing an alliance with Longaberger Baskets to supply chocolates for their annual breast cancer awareness initiative.

5.7 Milestones

The accompanying table lists important program milestones, with dates and managers in charge, and budgets for each. The milestone schedule indicates our emphasis on planning for implementation.

The most critical step in the start-up process is the selection of the final product. Bissinger's French Confectioners will have product samples completed by the end of June 2002. Once the product selection has been made, brochures and color photography can be produced and other related marketing and promotion steps can be completed.  

The milestone table shows purchasing, sales, and marketing goals. What the table doesn't show is the commitment behind it. Our business plan includes complete provisions for plan-vs.-actual analysis, and we will hold follow-up meetings every month to discuss the variance and course corrections.

Milestone Start Date End Date Budget Manager Department
Business Plan Completion 5/11/2002 5/21/2002 $100 Jim Herter Finance
Start-up Capital 5/22/2002 6/15/2002 $200 Jim Herter Finance
Obtain Business Insurance 6/16/2002 6/16/2002 $600 Linda Herter President
Consult w/ Attorney 6/20/2002 6/27/2002 $3,000 Jim/Linda President
Consult w/ Accountant 6/20/2002 6/27/2002 $3,000 Jim Herter Finance
Establish Telephone/Fax Lines 6/22/2002 6/29/2002 $250 Linda Herter President
Obtain Product Samples 6/15/2002 6/29/2002 $1,500 Linda/Jim President
Develop Web Page 6/15/2002 7/15/2002 $5,000 Linda Herter President
Re-print Stationery, Business Cards 6/15/2002 6/30/2002 $1,000 Linda Herter President
Brochures 6/15/2002 6/30/2002 $1,000 Linda Herter President
Develop National Database 6/1/2002 6/30/2002 $0 Linda Herter President
Mail Brochures/Product Samples 7/1/2002 7/15/2002 $500 Linda Herter President
Purchase Office/Computer Equipment 8/1/2002 8/1/2002 $4,000 Jim Herter IS
Marketing Consultation 12/1/2002 12/31/2002 $10,000 Linda/Jim Company
Secure Celebrity Spokesperson 1/1/2003 2/28/2003 $3,000 Linda President
Totals $33,150