On any given day, around two billion people use the products of Unilever. From feeding the family to keeping the household clean and fresh, the products have become significant parts of daily life. Research and Development can be seemed to be the gateway to constantly enhancement of the brands to deliver more intense and rewarding product experiences. Consumer research has played a significant role in the success story of this organization. Unilever makes continual efforts to introduce new and enhanced products to meet the changing requirements of its large consumer base.
The company invests around € 1 billion annually to meet the cutting-edge research and development requirements. The company has five research laboratories across the globe; among them, laboratories in Britain, United States, the Netherlands, and India have been the significant sources of innovation. The research base of the company is of high quality, which not only provides the underpinning for the development of new products but has also been crucial for the continual upgrading and renewal of the existing Unilever brands. Undoubtedly this has emerged as one of the biggest competitive advantages of the company in both local as well as global market.
Another significant competitive advantage of the company is its strong capabilities of branding and marketing. The company is well acquainted with the local markets and knows the marketing strategies which could fetch the maximum success for the company. This has enabled the company to have significant market segmentation strategies in packaged consumer products. For an instance, the company introduced new product categories in the deodorants and household cleaning products. Unilever brands failed to block the growth of the private level brands in Europe; despite this, Unilever was able to maintain its strong position in higher margin products.
The company has leveraged its knowledge of the brands and products in various regions across the globe and has used the same to meet the income level and changing aspirations of the local inhabitants
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