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Marketing Plan Guidelines - Free Sample

Project Output: Marketing Plan Guidelines


The banking industry is evolving every day due to the emergence of technology that has revolutionized the way banks design their products to satisfy customers’ needs. Banks must be predisposed to identify the items that are decreasing in demand and recognize potential financial products that will attract clients. Recently Mashreq Bank has learned that low-income workers belong to the majority of their customers and hence are now ready to tap the market by launching an innovative product for that consumer group. The paper aims to discuss the marketing process regarding the new financial product and the initiatives that the bank will take to ensure that it entices the under-privileged market customers. The weaknesses of Mashreq’s credit cards are assessed to develop a product that will benefit the clients who cannot qualify for credit card facilities. Moreover, the product’s target market and promotion tools are evaluated. The research also discusses the price objectives and strategies that will be used to ascertain whether it would attract disadvantaged customers in the country. Additionally, prototype trials process and product features during the trial are outlined. The competitive advantage of the new product when compared to other commodities in the market is examined to secure that the former will entice the consumers.

Project Output: Marketing Plan Guidelines

Introduction of the Organization

Mashreq Bank PSC based in Dubai is known to be one of the primary privately-owned banks in the United Arab Emirates. The bank was established in 1967 under the name Bank of Oman, which was later changed to Mashreq PSC. Mashreq is regarded as one of the earliest UAE banks to introduce credit and debit cards; furthermore, it was the first to develop ATM cash dispensers. Mashreq offers Islamic and traditional personal banking services that encompass the provision of loans, credit cards, and deposits. The bank also delivers Islamic and traditional investment banking services such as assisting companies in raising IPO, mergers, and restructuring, as well as assisting organizations in generating capital through underwriting.

The bank has twelve global offices in nine nations, including Africa, Asia, Europe, and the United States. Given that Mashreq is among the first banks established in the UAE, it has offered its financial and banking services to numerous clients and firms. However, in 1993, the bank altered its name to “Mashreq Bank” from “Bank of Oman,” and the bank’s services developed in various parts of the country. Therefore, the bank has a solid reputation for being one of the corporate and retail leaders since its branches are spread across the state.

Real Existing Product

The credit card industry has been in existence for a while, and the competition between banks was severe. Mashreq PSC has launched many types of credit cards that include Mashreq Travel, Mashreq Privileges, etc. For Mashreq Bank, these credit cards are their products that have brought positive returns but they have been misused by the customers (Macedo, 2013). Similarly, other banks had the same experience with this product. However, their personal debt has increased over the years; consequently, the bank had increasing personal debt figures due to the defaulted clients.

Mashreq Bank offers these facilities at different prices. In essence, the cost of the credit card will depend on the services that the card will provide since there are various types of cards with divergent prices. However, most low-income workers both domestic and abroad do not belong to their target group; hence, those customers cannot access some of the benefits that the card brings. Moreover, these employees have alternatively considered other forms of card facilities, which the bank can offer for an affordable charge in other sources consequently led to the fact that some customers declined their savings or quitted completely.

The location and public image of Mashreq PSC are attractive to the majority of their consumers. The bank has spent a lot of money on promotional services such as TV and newspapers to get their clients; therefore, a great deal of the budget was not utilized by the latter. In essence, their advertising campaigns do not consider low-income earners, and a large number of their customers do not meet their criteria (Crane, 2012). The bank credit application process and support services have been faced with complaints from individuals who argue that their issues are not solved by the customer service. The bank has positioned itself as customer-centric, but in the true sense, their credit card facilities have now contributed to the increase of personal debt.

Description of the New Product

Many foreign and domestic workers put half of their income as savings but their savings are not banked as they would want. Thus, this new prepaid debit card product would help solve most problems of alien and national employees since it will act as a savings tool, payment tool, purchase tool, and asset purchase investment platform. The users will have access to the online financial platforms and online personal finance guidance tool. The features to be integrated will be carefully considered to satisfy the demands of the under-privileged category.

The prepaid debit cards will be distributed through the special centers, labor unions and community outreach programs. The requirements will only include the identification documents, which most of the disadvantaged foreign and domestic workers have since it is demanded before obtaining any employment. Most low-income employees avoid banking facilities due to their high service charges, and these new prepaid debit cards will meet their needs. Therefore, enabling the UAE workers who are not sufficiently provided for to bank their savings and resort to banking accommodations at an affordable price is the core benefit of this product.

The prepaid debit cards will have the right features and be advertised through a trusted community to create awareness and attract both foreign and domestic employees who do not use any banking facilities. One of the appealing features is that it can be loaded through over-the-counter in Mashreq’s local and overseas branches, mobile-enabled services, or through direct payroll deposit. The secondary merit of the prepaid debits is its potential usage by the low-income earners to help them take advantage of this banking facility. Hence, the disadvantaged social classes will do their financial planning due to the availability of the product that satisfies their needs.

Target Market of the New Product

The target market for this product is the low-income foreign and domestic UAE workers who are unable to use credit and other current financial products offered by Mashreq Bank due to the high charges. The new product will accommodate both the young and old generations who reside in different geographical areas since they are eligible to be employed anywhere in the world, as they are over the legal age of eighteen. In addition, the facility targets all the individuals who cannot afford the credit card facilities but still want to use the benefits provided by utilizing these cards. Consequently, the product would then focus on the average consumers who cannot bear considerable expenses imposed on other card facilities offered by other establishments.

The marketing department should be able to strategize on how to use the promotional mix since the product is supposed to serve different people, namely the elderly, youngsters, males, females, the unemployed, and low-income workers. Hence, the platforms appropriate for any promotion should consider the diversity of target groups. However, the services are similar and due to that, the prepaid debit card will realize its core benefit of enabling the target group bank their savings as well as access other services (Crane, 2012). Given the promotion mix, the product is viewed as attractive to underprivileged people because the charges are affordable. The product will be spread to the designated locations since its profitability will largely depend on how the bank will position itself in the market.

Competition for the New Product

RAKBANK has already issued prepaid debit cards to their customers, but their cards are only used as a payment tool. Most prepaid debit cards of this bank allow online payments using MasterCard. Additionally, the facility enables the users to make their payments online, cash withdrawals, and point-of-sale purchases. Their product is not unique since its service is limited; consequently, it will not excel the new product, especially for the low-income consumers.

Similarly to Mashreq’s prepaid debit cards, the process of applying is simple although unregistered customers have to visit the bank to process their applications. The cards brings the benefit of accessing over 100 shops in the UAE (“United Arab Emirates prepaid cards business and investment opportunities,” 2017). RAKBANK’s card can be utilized where MasterCard is accepted unlike the one of Mashreq’s, which can be used globally as well as MasterCard, Visa, American Express, PayPal . RAKBANK’s card only offers US dollar and Dirham cash loading services contrary to the Mashreq’s card, in which one can load in all currencies. Unlike RAKBANK, Mashreq has applied innovative technology to convert all customers’ data to personal identification number technology and chip as a protection layer against fraud.

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Pricing Objectives, Strategies and Price Setting Method for the New Product

The product ought to be supplied following a pricing strategy that is cost effective and satisfies the financial requirements of the clients. The objective of the product is to cater for the needs of low-income workers; hence, its launch and supply program should concentrate on ensuring that the all the target groups are reached (Crane, 2012). In essence, the bank will employ the penetration pricing strategy since the focus is to capture more market share in the prepaid debit card sector. Therefore, the pricing should have no costs that are hidden and easy to comprehend.

The bank should utilize perceived-value pricing, as their price-setting method because their aim is to include the low-income workers. The product service charges should be set according to the perceived price by the clients who will resort to it since their priority is to attract consumers. Moreover, the nature of pricing should be transparent so that it becomes easy for the clients to track. The bank should not prioritize their objectives or the cost of doing business since the product launch would not go as expected. Hence, it is important to achieve the pricing objectives for the bank to handle the pricing.

Distribution and Processes for the New Product

The place of work would be the best channel for distributing the financial product. The reason is that it is at the work place where employees receive their money and implement their retirement plans. The prepaid debit cards can be best distributed at the workstations at that time when staff members are introduced to the variety of techniques of paycheck delivery. Furthermore, it offers a good chance to attain simplicity of efficiency scale associated with financial services (Khan, 2014). As such, when prepaid debit cards are provided by the places of work, this would create a great opportunity for the employees to decide how much to save or spend and choose their method of payment.

There is a special relationship between the staff and their employers since they are cooperate every day. Hence, the product should be distributed through particular centers, labor unions, and NGOs of several communities. Thus, this platform will facilitate a consistent communication and give an impetus for participating in the programs dealing with financial services. Most low-income earners have more than one employer and interacting with then through workers centers and unions will be beneficial since they will be educated on the importance of the prepaid debit card. Therefore, the bank should utilize this platform to entice their customers since it is readily available and when applied it can bring good results.

Promotion Mix for the New Product

The promotion mix of the new product ought to be diverse to accommodate the use of social networks such as personal selling, which is very efficient, as it resorts to the word of mouth. The salespeople will promote the product via their outlook, impression and exceptional knowledge about the prepaid debit card and Internet-based banking. Essentially, the promotion aims at attaining good publicity for the new product from the target group. Hence, a lot of resources should be employed in direct marketing and personal selling since consumers will understand more about the product.

The marketing approach should incorporate most of the promotional mix including sales promotion whereby the employees of the bank can give discounts to the customers. Marketing aids, namely brochure layouts and giveaways, should be provided to facilitate advancement of the product. More importantly, the promotion should be done through community organizations that are credible and trusted. In addition, the bank should engage workers unions and centers by ensuring that they participate in educational programs that are launched by those organizations. On the other hand, social media platforms should be utilized to inform young staff members about the product and demonstrate how it would make them achieve their financial goals.

Example of Social Media Giveaways

The contest will target the workers who are under the age of forty although recently a large number of older people have joined the social media platforms.

Budget for the Social Media Contests



Main Prize


Other Prizes

$ 2500

Social Media Marketing cost


Contingency Cost


Total Cost


Physical Evidence Relevant to the New Product

The procedure in introducing the product is to find partners who would supply the product to the worker centers and other community outreach platforms where the low-income UAE employees are registered. The centers and unions are an important source of potential clients since foreign and domestic workers are usually registered there. The prototype trials have to be provided to those platforms; hence, an efficient compensation system should avail for the vendors who assist the bank in this process.

The prototype product should have certain features. Firstly, the product cannot include hidden fees and should have savings account functionality. The prototype should offer the money transfer capability as well as the capacity to pay bills in different forms. In addition, the platform should be flexible in identifying their clients with customer support translated into different languages through both the Internet and via the phone. More importantly, the prototype should have value loading options, which aim at allowing direct deposits and other over-the-counter services that are cost-effective.

People Involved for the Distribution of the New Product

Various groups of people are to be involved in the product processes ranging from its design to launching. The technical group will be engaged with the design of the features that are to be integrated into the product to make it attractive to low-income individuals. The bank will work towards ensuring that the product will correlate with the consumers’ priorities. Furthermore, the bank will have to examine the vendors who could supply the products to the worker unions, centers, and other points of contact used by the community outreach programs. The bank should select suppliers who offer a cost-effective way of supplying the products to a broad market.

Moreover, the members of the workforce will participate in the distribution and promotion of the prepaid debit cards. For instance, during some events, in particular an open day, the personnel will inform customers about the new product and provide them with giveaways to attract the attention of potential clients. Consequently, they will receive brochures, which they can share with their friends and family members who would be interested in the product. Therefore, the bank staff will play a fundamental role in the success of the product since they will be in contact with the customers when the need arises.

Proactive Customer Service

The marketing plan will depend on the membership and community outreach programs since most foreign and domestic workers are registered in numerous social networks. Thus, labor unions should be used as the contact point since alien and national employees must join the union in each country. Hence, the unions will send an email or hold an event as a means of creating awareness of the product. In some cases, the unions will have to re-examine some membership rules to launch due packages where cardholders may receive fee waivers or other prizes to be determined in major states.

The marketing department will resort to communication facilities such as signage, brochures, as well as presentations in their collaboration with the target clients. Customer service should reflect priorities in educating people on the product functionality to enable the consumers to understand how to use the facility. As the primary point of contact, the workers unions and community outreach platforms will receive funding assistance from the vendors who will provide with marketing materials and proper training on how to assist the employees in accessing those cards. Moreover, customer service should encourage worker’s activities on social media platforms where they may offer account registration services and allow instant access. Therefore, the development of the product will depend on the effectiveness of the education program for clients.

Appendix A


Customer Care: Good morning Sir. Welcome to Mashreq Bank. How may I help you today?

Me: Hi. Are there credit card offers in the bank?

Customer Care: The bank offers many types. Every detail listed on this brochure. Take it! Platinum credit card is very popular, it offers 36% annual interest!

Me: Alas! But the interest rate is very high

Customer Care: The best part is that you get to join a lottery whereby for every two dollars you spend you earn a point for winning a ticket to a tourist destination of your choice.

Me: That is very interesting. How about this other Golden credit card?

Customer Care: Well., I am happy to say that our golden credit card has a lower interest rate of 10% with only a $30 annual fee. Also, every dollar you spend earns reward points that you can use for shopping at designated malls.

Me: Mhhh. That is fair now. Do you offer prepaid debit cards?

Customer Care: Yes, of course. The card only acts as a payment tool. Would you like to apply for any of the credit cards, please?

Me: No, please. I will apply later in the afternoon. Thank you for the information.

Customer Care: Okay, thank you. Have a wonderful day!

Me: You too!

Social Media Giveaways

$5000 Mashreq Bank Prepaid Card Contest

Every time you refer a new customer join the Prepaid Card Bandwagon, You increase your chance of winning $1000 and many other prizes. 


Enter the Contest by visiting the Bank or other Partners (Worker Unions/Centre/NGOs) to get the Prepaid Card.

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