Marketing and Communication Distribution Channel Analysis



In this project, you will demonstrate your mastery of the following competency:

  • Determine appropriate marketing and communication distribution channels


Acadia Park Equipment Co. logo on a forest background with slogan Your adventure, your world.

You work in the marketing department of Acadia Park Equipment Co., a seller of high-quality outdoor products, and recently sales have flattened then decreased on your top-selling product. The product is a two-person camping tent that protects campers from the elements and folds up easily to be carried or packed into a small space. Your manager has asked for your help to increase sales of this product and believes that the primary issue is a lack of proper distribution channels to various customer segments. She needs your help to conduct market research then propose a communication plan. First, read a bit more about the company where you work:

  • Acadia Park Equipment Co.
    • Slogan: “Your adventure, your world.”
    • Company History: Acadia Park Equipment Co. was founded by a brother and sister who were inspired by their love of the outdoors. They decided to start Acadia Park Equipment Co. in response to all of the overpriced outdoor products in the big box retail stores, and sought to create high-quality products at a price anyone can afford. The company’s mission is to spread the love and appreciation of the outdoors to all of its customers and beyond.
    • Vision: As Acadia Park Equipment Co. moves toward its goal of making it affordable for outdoor enthusiasts to enjoy nature, we will support organizations whose main efforts involve research to continue preservation efforts toward the environment. We regularly encourage employees to engage in preservation and clean-up efforts to help the environment.
    • Primary Customer Demographic: Adventure seeking adults ages 18-40

Your manager wants you to take a look at three customer segments and determine the best distribution channels and methods to reach them. Specifically, you’ll provide a distribution channel analysis with recommendations for each of the following customer segments: 18- to 24-year-olds, 25- to 34-year-olds, and 35 and older. While customers can be segmented by any number of characteristics, your manager is confident that starting with segments by age will help remedy the recent decrease in sales. Your manager intends to use your report to make multiple changes to marketing, but plans to focus first on the previous top-selling product: the two-person camping tent that protects campers from the elements and folds up easily to be carried or packed into a small space.

Man hiking in the Talkeetna Mountains of Alaska.


Your distribution channel analysis will contain recommendations for each of the following customer segments: 18- to 24-year-olds, 25- to 34-year-olds, and 35 and older. In order to effectively complete this analysis, you will need to first analyze each customer segment then recommend distribution channels and communications. You will answer who, what, when, where, why, and how in your analysis. More specifically, your manager has asked you to complete the following:

  • Customer Segment Analyses: In order to effectively make marketing channel recommendations, you will first need to conduct research on the target customer segments. You will need to include the following information about each of the three customer segments:
    • Who: Describe the needs, interests/activities, and attitudes/values of each segment as they relate to high-quality outdoor products.
      • Digital and Traditional Media: Your manager would also like you to explain how each segment interacts with digital and traditional media, as this will be essential to the success of the product.
    • What: Explain how each customer segment will use the specific product in question. For example, will they use it as a gift? Will they use it to go on a camping trip?
    • When: Determine when each customer segment is likely to shop for this product and explain why. For example, are they likely to shop for this product on a weekend as a gift? In the evening prior to a camping trip?
  • Distribution Channel Recommendations: Now that you have thoroughly researched each customer segment, you will consider the most appropriate distribution channels for each. In your distribution channel analysis, you must include the following:
    • Where: Describe where each segment is likely to shop for this product and explain why. In particular, you will need to determine the best distribution channel for each segment. For instance, where is a particular customer segment most likely to encounter and purchase this product? Be sure to consider the following:
      • Distribution Channels: Choose one distribution channel, such as retail, direct/internet, wholesaler/distributor, etc., that would be best for each customer segment.
    • Why: Explain why this segment is likely to interact with the distribution channel that you chose. Provide evidence to support your claims.
  • Conclusion: To complete your distribution channel analysis, write a conclusion with the following information:
    • How: In this section, you will need to explain how you will message each customer segment including the following:
      • Describe how you will message each segment. Be sure to explain what is a communication channel, such as social media, direct mail, etc., for each target customer segment. You do not need to create the actual message, but should describe the content and tone.
      • Describe how you will measure the success of each distribution and communication channel. Consider specific metrics, such as a particular number of likes or shares on Facebook, new customers acquired per advertisement, etc. Explain your rationale to support your choice of measurements.

What to Submit

Every project has a deliverable or deliverables, which are the files that must be submitted before your project can be assessed. For this project, you must submit the following:

Distribution Channel Analysis
Your distribution channel analysis will contain three parts: customer segment analyses, distribution channel recommendations, and a conclusion. It will help your manager determine how to best market the product in question to each of three customer segments and should be 1,250–1,750 words in length.

Reference List For each source that you cite, you need to include the author’s name, the publication year, the title of the source, and the location of the source in a References section at the end of your work. Cite all sources appropriately.

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