19 May 2019

A Case Study: This Is How Private Businesses Decline in the Absence of a Marketing Strategy

What would happen when a private firm lacks an efficient marketing strategy? This case study is an investigation on lack of marketing strategy in an Erbil based private firm called Al-Wafi Company, provides foreign labors to local businesses.

After more than seven years, the company’s leaders started using some basic E-marketing through Facebook Network at the cost of missing too many opportunities and potential clients, according to Shekh Omer, founder and CEO of the company.

 “I just realized that the company can’t survive without some sorts of advertisement,” added Shekh-Omer while describing the gradual decline of his business when most his competitor are growing.

The company provides foreign, mostly Asian, unskilled labors to Iraqi market. Due to all the business opportunities it lost and lack of a proper marketing strategy, the company is on the brink of bankruptcy. 

Using Porter’s Five Forces theory and SWOT analysis, this paper shows what determines a company’s strengths and weaknesses and what threat and opportunities are ahead of it. The analysis basically suggest that the company cannot keep operating and make profit unless It pursues a proper marketing strategy.

Ary Hamed
Ary Hamed

is business and market analyst at ICPAR. His research focus is on KRI‌s private sector, startups, and business challenges. He holds MBA from The American University of Iraq-Sulaimani.

Missing Opportunities

Recently, several recruiting companies tried to respond to the Iraq’s expanding demand for unskilled foreign labor. The foreign labors cost less, and they do the work which most of the Iraqis avoid. Many companies prefer to have them since they are not accustomed with local rules, and they are ready to work extra time without being paid extra. Some of them works 12 hours per day with no normal weekend break. Thus, many firms prefer foreign labors for unskilled employees.

Al-Wafi emerged in this market as a foreign-labor provider in Erbil, but it has not grown alongside with a market-expansion strategy as demand has grown for its service. Actually, it has barely survived as it has not been able to reach out to most of its potential customers and done very little to promote its services.

Most of the labor-providing companies bring workers from low income countries and provide them with visas and residency permit. The market is growing and the labor demand is raising as Iraq’s economy is recovering after the end of the war with ISIS and oil price crash. But Al-Wafi can’t catch up with the market growth as it has no strategy to reach out to its potential customers.

Alwafi, as well as other companies, needs an effective marketing strategy. Clients do not know about Al-Wafi is if the company does not make any effort to reach them. It has to allocate a budget for marketing with a functional strategy. It also needs to review its action plan and evaluate what it has done in order to see what went wrong/right in its past 8 years.

The point of such a marketing strategy is to make the companies’ name remembered when clients make purchases. Or when they think about obtaining a product or a service. The first name that comes to their minds is the names of the producers and service providers that had appropriate marketing strategy. 

As Al-Wafi has lacked proper marketing strategy, it has lost lots of potential customers, according to Shekh-Omer.

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