The marketing strategy of a business organization is seen to be embedded in its marketing mix decisions. The marketing mix is a set of marketing tools that the firm uses to pursue its objectives in the target market. McCarthy classified these four broad groups that he called the four Ps of marketing: product, price, promotion, and place (Kotler 2003).
Qantas (an acronym for Queensland and Northern Territory Aerial Services) is the world’s second oldest continuously running independent and Australia’s largest airline. The firm traces its roots in November 1920 when it operated air mail services subsidized by the Australian government. Through the years, the airline has significantly developed and evolved into an international carrier. With its fleet of 200 aircraft, Qantas flies to more than 80 destinations in about 40 countries and to some 20 cities in Australia (Qantas 2006).
During the fiscal year ended June 2005, the company reported $9,632.1 million in total revenue representing double-digit annual growth of 23.0%. Out of this huge revenue, profits realized $579.5 net profit. The airline currently employs 38,000 employees to man its various business operations. It should be noted that the number of employees has increased by 12.2% from the previous year. This significantly indicates Qantas’ aggressive expansion (Hoover 2006).
Currently, Qantas continues to be one of the market leaders in the global air transportation industry. Its main international hubs are Sydney Kingsford-Smith airport and Melbourne International Airport, followed by Singapore Changi Airport. However, Qantas operates a significant amount of international flights into and out of Los Angeles International Airport, London Heathrow, Brisbane International Airport, Tokyo Narita Airport, and Perth International Airport. Its domestic hubs are Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane airports, but the company also has a strong presence in Perth, Adelaide, Cairns and Canberra Airports (Qantas 2006).
This impressive performance of Qantas, which makes it the world’s leading long distance airline and one of Australia’s strongest brands, can be directly attributed to its well-laid marketing strategy. Included in these are the crucial decisions on product, price, promotion, and place.
Qantas, as an airline, is primarily involved in offering passenger transportation and air freight to its market. However, we can see that the product portfolio of Qantas also includes other associated business operations like in-flight catering, and holiday and travel operations (Qantas website 2006).