Chilango marketing plan in the UK Essay Example

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8Chilango Marketing in the UK


Executive Summary

Strategic planning is a key aspect in organizational planning. Primarily, the SWOT analysis has been overly embedded in the marketing and strategic planning of most organizations. In the Chilango chain of Mexican restaurants, this is no different. Originally a Mexican based restaurant, the Chilango chain of restaurants has managed to successfully expand its business to other regions. Presently, this chain of restaurants is taking focus on the United Kingdom (UK) market. This is being achieved through the acquisition of property for setting up the restaurant outlets as well as positioning the Chilango products in a strategic place to other competing products. Using the SWOT analysis, it is evident that the Chilango restaurant has considerable strengths as compared to the threats anticipated to affect the growth of the organization. Prior to centering its business in the UK market, the Chilango restaurant has evidently succeeded in promoting familiarity of its products among its customers in other places. In spite of this, the focus on a single market region can be presumed to be a threat to its future development considering the expansion and growth of other competitors with a similar product to offer.

Critical Analysis

In an attempt to diversify and increase its market shares and positioning, Chilango a Mexican chain Restaurant is expanding at a recommendable rate. This Mexican cuisine reportedly is focusing its growth in London by acquiring more property and putting up more outlets for their products. Directed by Eric Partaker as well as Dan Houghton, this chain of fast Mexican cuisines has received a lot of recognition from customers in areas where it operates. This is evidenced in the rising investments the restaurant is receiving from crowd funding. The two directors of the Chilango chain of restaurants observe that, their ability to have created familiarity of their products among its target consumers in different locations has enabled them to gain competitive advantage and at the same time, will go a long way in ensuring that the restaurant meets its objective of expanding its business one restaurant per quarter (Mission statement). With an aim of focusing on the United Kingdom market, the Chilango restaurant stands to benefit more as this limits the complications brought about by managing distant outlets as compared to managing outlets in a central location (Wright n.d; Paskin 2010).

Market treads

The eating habits of the general populace in the UK seem to be taking a turn into the consumption of fast foods. According to reports by the Hospitality and Catering news (2013), consumers have developed a habit of eating out. This has ostensibly impacted on the market dynamics. For instance, according to the analysis, branded fast food are valued at £4.5billion turnover across 5,343 outlets, delivering annual growth of 5.7% in sales and 4.1% in outlets. This has created a strong position for the fast food restaurants by enabling the populace to benefit from all-day dining.

Competitive Analysis

In the UK market, branded chains are reportedly winning market share from independents. Since 2007, the branded outlet segment has grown by 2.4 points to 14% by 2013, and by 7.3 points to 35% in share of total revenue value. Consumers are ardent about food, thus leading to the demand of higher quality; better rates as well as more variety for products. This will go a long way in shaping the upcoming branded restaurant marketplace.  Apparently, the street food uprising is bringing exciting novel authentic cuisines, this low-cost market entry model is gathering momentum, encouraging fast growth and is poised to directly influence strong operators and challenge weaker small brands and independents (Hospitality and Catering News, 2013).


In a bid to expand business and become more popular in the fast food business, Chilango chain of Mexican restaurants has set out the following objectives that will propel the organization to success;

  1. To expand business one restaurant per quarter

  2. To ensure customer satisfaction through quick service

  3. To offer quality products to customers

  4. To sustain a competitive advantage in the market

SWOT and P.E.S.T Analysis

Organizations must continually make adjustments to maintain optimal function (Balamuralikrishna and Dugger n.d). A number of different techniques can be used to determine where adjustments need to be made. One essential technique involves a discussion of an organization’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, commonly called SWOT
analysis. Chilango poses more competitive advantage in comparison to other fast food restaurants. This is so because of the distinct menu it provides to its customers in addition to the quick service. In its aim to expand its business, Chilango restaurant has established a customer satisfaction service where customers receive prompt services thus saving them on time. Additionally, the quality of the food prepared is seemingly high as it attracts a large group of customers.

According to Harrison (2010), the primary objective of strategic planning is to bring an organization into balance with the external environment and to maintain that balance over time. More often than not, organizations achieve this balance by evaluating new programs and services with the intent of taking full advantage of organizational performance. SWOT analysis is a pilot decision-making tool that sets the stage for this work. The first stage of SWOT analysis involves the gathering and evaluation of significant data. Depending on the organization, these data varies in respect to the analysis the organization wants to conduct. In this case for instance, Chilango would be gathering data which might include population demographics, consumer product preference, market competition as well as market performance of players in the same product line. Once the data have been collected and analyzed, the organization’s capabilities in these areas are assessed.

In the second stage of the SWOT analysis, data on the organization are collected and organized into four categories: strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Strengths and weaknesses largely are gotten from factors within the organization, whereas opportunities and threats commonly arise from external factors. In most instances, organizational surveys are considered an effective means of gathering some of this information, such as data on an organization’s finances, operations, and processes (Clawson, 2014).

The third stage of the analysis usually involves the development of a SWOT matrix for each business alternative under consideration. For example, say a new restaurant is evaluating the development of a new distribution channel or outlet. Then this organization will be looking at two options; the first is a wholly owned business, and the second would be a joint venture with local restaurant business especially in cases where the organization has not gained popularity among the local populace. The appointed expert panel would then be required to complete a separate SWOT matrix for each alternative. In the fourth stage, the organization incorporates the SWOT analysis into the decision-making process to determine which business alternative best meets the organization’s overall strategic plan (Balamuralikrishna and Dugger, n.d).


  • Customer familiarity with the product

  • Focus on a central location


  • Geographic restraint


  • Demand for quick service by customers

Use the strengths to take advantage of opportunities

Overcome weaknesses by taking advantage of opportunities

  • Competition

Use strengths to avoid threats

Minimize weaknesses and avoid threats

Whilst SWOT assesses the internal aspects affecting the organization like its strengths and weakness, the P.E.S.T (Political, Economic, Social, and Technological) analysis is designed to complement it by evaluating the external factors. Primarily, P.E.S.T analysis can be considered as the opportunity and threat aspect of the SWOT analysis. This is because; it evaluates the external market trends affecting the organization.


ecological/environmental issues, current legislation home market, future legislation,
international legislation, regulatory bodies and processes, government policies, government term and change, trading policies, funding, grants and initiatives,
home market lobbying/pressure groups, international pressure groups, wars and conflicts


home economy situation, home economy trends, overseas economies and trends, general taxation issues, taxation specific to product/services, seasonality/weather issues, market and trade cycles, specific industry factors, market routes and distribution trends, customer/end-user drivers, interest and exchange rates, international trade/monetary issues

lifestyle trends, demographics, consumer attitudes and opinions, media views, law changes affecting social factors, brand, company, technology image, consumer buying patterns, fashion and role models, major events and influences, buying access and trends, ethnic/religious factors, advertising and publicity, ethical issues


competing technology development, research funding, associated/dependent technologies, replacement technology/solutions, maturity of technology, manufacturing maturity and capacity,
information and communications, consumer buying mechanisms/technology, technology legislation, innovation potential, technology access, licensing, patents, intellectual property issues, global communications

Internal analysis and Application

SWOT analysis can be applied in different ways in respect to the identified strengths, weaknesses, opportunities available and threats anticipated to face an organization. By creating familiarity with the customers, Chilango restaurant has been able to place its products at a presumably high position in the market with regards to fast food restaurants. In this, the organization has taken into stride the move to a competitive advantage over its competitors in a similar business field. Unlike most organizations, the decision of centering the product delivery to customers by the organization is critical. This will enable the managerial staff to easily monitor the sale and growth of the organization while at the same time enables them to control and evaluate the strategies they put in place (Schall and Franz n.d). For a successful strategy to work out, it is important for it to be evaluated on a timely basis to allow for promote changes when need be to avoid negative competition from other upcoming organizations. On the other hand, the demand by customers especially when dealing with fast food outlets is for quick and effective services. This is one of the key issues taken into consideration by the Chilango chain of Mexican restaurants. From its assessment as well as customer feedback evaluation, it is apparent that the customers are satisfied with the kind of service they receive from the restaurant. The ability to get quick service and quality products can be attributed to be a major advantage for Chilango chain of restaurants. Additionally, this has also benefited the restaurant by providing it with competitive advantage. In essence, SWOT analysis appears to be a feasible mode of formulating a workable strategic plan in the case of Chilango restaurant in their focus to expand their growth in the UK market.

Reference List

Balamuralikrishna, R & Dugger, J. C n.d, SWOT analysis: a management tool for initiating

new programs in vocational schools, Journal of Vocational and Technical Education, Vol 12, No. 1

Clawson, T 2014, Will Chilango’s £2m Success Herald an Affordable Mini Bond Revolution?

Harrison, J. P 2010, Essentials of strategic planning in healthcare, Health Administration Press

Hospitality and Catering News 2013, UK branded restaurant market to grow by £5.6 billion

UK Branded Restaurant Market to grow by £5.6 billion

Paskin, B 2010, Mexican chain Chilango to open fifth London restaurant, retrieved from,

Schall, N., and Franz, J n.d, Practitioner’s guide: Strength, Weaknesses, Opportunities &

Threats (SWOT), Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Technische Zuszmmenarbeit (GTZ) GmbH

Wright, A n.d, Marketing strategy, provided resource