Panera Bread Analysis

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Date Submitted: 03/30/2009 11:28 AM

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Panera Bread Case Analysis

1.    What is the generic strategy of Panera Bread?  In which direction is it going?  What is its target market?

I consider Panera’s generic strategy to be broad differentiation. Even though they do offer a variety of products (baked goods, sandwiches, salads, soups, and café beverages) they still offer something different for customers by providing a unique atmosphere and exceptional quality, which is why in turn they charge a premium price. In the generic strategy exhibit it is obvious that more of the fast-food restaurants, such as McDonalds and Subway, are positioned more in the low-cost section. This is because they strive on winning customers with low cost. A restaurant such as Starbucks would be in the focused differentiation section because they focus on providing one exceptionally good product (coffee and coffee-like products) and also charge a premium price.

Panera needs to stay in the broad differentiation section. The reasoning for this is because if the company tried to move toward low-cost, the quality of their products or service may have to suffer in exchange. This would not be good for their business because the quality products and service is what their customers expect (also is a very strong strength in their SWOT analysis) and is why customers are willing to pay a premium price.

The Panera case states that their target market is “urban workers and suburban dwellers looking for a quick-service meal and a more aesthetically pleasing dining experience than that offered by traditional fast food restaurants”. By this statement it could be said that Panera has a very broad target market because they are really focusing on anyone looking for a fast quality meal. Also, with the growth of their catering program their target market can be expanded to workplaces and schools, which are places that could often use their services.

2.    Complete a strategic group map.  Is Panera positioned properly?  Where...