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Business Plan for Total Gas Stations

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About the brand

Total S.A. is a French oil and gas company that was founded in 1924. It is one of the supermajor oil companies in the world - which means that they are on the list of the six biggest state independent oil companies of the world. Total's business segments also include chemicals and nuclear power, but in this report we will only focus on their gas stations, known under the name Total.

As aforementioned, Total is a gas station and you can find them among the big roads in Europe. Their headquarters is located in Paris, France. Most people know this brand because of their gas stations or their sponsorships. For example, they sponsor the Formula One Dakar Rally and some other racing teams.

In this report, we will be presenting our original marketing communication campaign for the Total gas stations, which includes slogans, social media movements, flyers, billboards, and so on.

The initial situation

At the moment, Total uses lots of channels to communicate with their customers. They have a very comprehensive website in every country they operate. Next to this they have special websites where you can find the nearest gas station which is a very convenient service for their customers.

Total also has a Facebook page with more than 6.2 million likes. At the moment they don't post very often, the average being around one or two times a week. However, the company does not use Facebook as a marketing channel to start viral marketing campaigns in which you could profit from the low cost and broad reach the social network has to offer.
Total also has an Instagram account with 7.500 followers. Similarly to their Facebook page, the Instagram page is not very active – its latest post is more than 3 weeks old. On Instagram they haven't posted a single picture that has a catchy marketing message yet. All their pictures uploaded combined result in one big picture which might look nice, but doesn't give them the advantage that carefully designed pictures out of a marketing campaign might bring.
We find a similar picture on Total's twitter account. They have around 407.000 followers, and in average the company tweets something every 3 days; usually these tweets give out information about Total's day to day work and for example tell the followers when the company introduces a new payment system, but once again they're not being used to generate a marketing message.

Their brand is currently not being perceived differently from other gas-station-companies, due to the fact that Total makes no effort to give the customer a reason to do so. Their marketing focusses too much on their actual work instead of bringing another component into their advertisements.

According to the annual report of 2015, Total spent 896 million into Marketing and Service. They didn't split the amount specific into marketing. Therefore, we can't say exactly what the amount is they put into marketing, although you can be sure that it could be used more efficiently if they started a new campaign that generated more awareness for their company.

Total had in the past lots of marketing campaigns. The one watched the most is from September 2016. This commercial is watched 3.8 million times on Youtube[1].

The advertisement itself is well done, using Kavinskiy’s song "Roadgame". This song was used in the very popular movie "Drive" and might therefore draw a lot of younger viewers to the ad as well. However, even though the spot itself is done very professionally and gives a short but intense look into what the company does, once again, the ad might as well have been done by a different gas-station-company. The viewer wouldn't even have known the difference. You can also see that in the number of likes the spot got. Even though it has a lot of views, viewers weren't emotionalized enough to give the video a like (only 13 people pressed like).

This is where the company has to do a turnaround in marketing. They have to give the consumer a reason to go to their gas stations and to start identifying with Total.

Our campaign

In order to achieve that, we thought of a new campaign, Total could start in the near future.

There are lots of people who are trying to fill their fuel tank by that much at a gas station so that they have to pay an even amount. This simply makes it easier for the customer since he does not get any change back, but instead can simply hand the cashier a bill and leave.
We will use that to our advantage. Since Total is a French company, we will launch our campaign in France first. Our customers can win prizes if they manage to get an even amount of money when filling up at their gas station. By that we mean that they have to buy fuel for exactly 20€ or 30€, etc. The minimum will be 20€ (this is so that people don't redo the procedure very often).

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