Marketing Management Case Study 2
Marketing Excellence >>Walmart
Walmart, the giant chain of discount stores, is the second largest company in the world, with over $400 billion in revenue and 2.1 million associates (or employees). The phenomenal success story began in 1962 when Sam Walton opened up his first discount store in Rogers, Arkansas. He sold the same products as his competitors but kept prices lower by reducing his profit margin. His customers quickly caught on and the company took off almost immediately. Walton’s EDLP (Every Day Low Price) strategy remains the foundation of Walmart’s success today. Through the company’s economies of scale, Walmart is able to offer customers top brand-name products for the lowest price.
Walmart expanded throughout the United States in the 1970s and 1980s by acquiring some of its competitors and opening new stores. The first Walmart Supercenter—a discount store with food outlets, an optical center, photo lab, hair salon, among other amenities—opened in 1988. By 1990, Walmart had become the nation’s number one retailer, with $32 billion in revenue and stores in 33 states. The company’s international expansion began with a store outside Mexico City in 1991 and has grown to over 3,800 international locations, some under a different brand name.
Walmart thrives on three basic beliefs and values: “Respect for the Individual,” “Service to Our Customers,” and “Striving for Excellence.” Sam Walton’s original 10-foot rule—“I promise that whenever I come within 10 feet of a customer, I will look him in the eye, greet him, and ask if I can help him.”—still governs today, embodied by the “greeters” at the front door. In addition, Walmart embraces the communities in which it enters in order to develop strong local relationships and build its brand image in the area. The company donates significant amounts of money to local charities through its “Good Works” program, hires local individuals, and purchases food from local...