Factors Internal and External
Internal and External Factors of a Brand
In a general sense, the final form of every product produced, marketed, and sold in a society is a combination of internal and external factors. These factors appear in the original concept and extend throughout the development of the product until the final retail sale. Wrigley’s
Eclipse Gum is no exception.
The internal factors of the minty, sugar-free chewing gum include Wrigley’s management, operational experience, production capability, and research and development efforts.
Wrigley’s Chewing Gum has been in the business of making gum for over 100 years. They are not lacking in experience in this field. Along with that level of experience must come a well-developed model of product production. They also must have a good practice of staying abreast of external factors outside their internal control. The company brings established research and development methods and techniques to this product. What could possibly be a negative result of this much experience behind the production of Eclipse gum is the possibility of tunnel vision on what’s worked in the past. As is evident from certain failed product lines, past performance does not always guarantee future results. The success of Eclipse means Wrigley probably did not blindly follow a past template, but was doting about each step of development, production, marketing, and distribution.
Other internal factors that affected this product are manufacturing quality and consistency. When a consumer decides to purchase Eclipse gum in spearmint flavor, it ought to live up to the consumer’s expectation and taste like spearmint, be long-lasting, and provide a similar experience as the last time the consumer chewed the gum. This consistency can only occur when the product is produced under high-quality standards with competent manufacturing employees. Within manufacturing, this is known as conformance quality. (Kotler & Keller, 2006, p. 349)
Not all factors are within the domain of Wrigley’s control. Competitors, regulation, image, societal trends, economics, and technology would be considered external factors.
Wrigley must contend with worldwide competition from dozens of gum makers, chiefly the Cadbury conglomerate which makes Trident and Dentyne. Every change Wrigley’s might do to Eclipse gum, whether stylistic or substantive, would certainly be examined beforehand relative to
its competition. For instance, Wrigley’s might want to structure the exterior of the packaging a certain way so as to expose a piece of the gum. However, Cadbury’s Dentyne and Trident already do that so the Eclipse people might not want to go that route. They might like the idea, but perhaps they do not want to make Eclipse any more similar looking to its competitors. They would want to
maintain a level of distinctness. (Kotler & Keller, 2006, p. 325) Wrigley must also consider governmental regulations regarding labeling standards and advertising claims. They have to be careful if they venture too much with claims of healthy benefits. The United States Federal Drug Administration would stop sales if Eclipse tried to advertise itself as the “gum that lowers cholesterol”, even though that advertisement would surely make sales jump. Wrigley’s also needs to keep abreast of the current societal trends to foster the image it wants, rather than becoming seen as outdated and irrelevant for today’s consumer. For Eclipse to prosper in the market, the producers also need to be aware of the nationwide economy within which it sells its product. If the
economy goes sour and consumers start trying to cut back on spending, Wrigley’s might reduce the unit size of the gum in order to lower the price. Finally, the makers of Eclipse have to stay apprised of the latest technological breakthroughs in the field of gum-making in order to not fall behind more tech-savvy competitors.
Just like every successful product, in order to maintain its status as profitable for its company, Eclipse must balance its own internal factors and deal with the external factors outside Wrigley’s
Kotler, P., & Keller, K. (2006). Marketing Management, 12th ed. South Asia: Pearson Education.