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Cancer Research Analysis: Strategic Planning

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Business
Wordcount: 4513 words Published: 6th Dec 2017

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Cancer is one of the world’s deadly diseases which is having lot of effects. Cancer need lot research to decline the rate of death of patients due to cancer. This declination in the rate can be achieved by carrying out the research the funding for research can be achieved by charity, dedicated to saving lives through ground breaking research. Cancer Research UK is named as cancer research and awareness charity in the United Kingdom , came in existence on February 2002 by the merger of The Cancer Research Campaign and Imperial Cancer Research Fund.

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These organisations are making huge publicity in the society to get awareness in the people about this disease. These make awareness about the symptoms and treatment .All the funding from the charity is used for research in directly and indirectly .Together with partners; they have had a significant impact which has helped to reduce the number of cancer deaths. (Cancer Research)

Non -Profit Sector

Non-profit mean one doesn’t accept any type of profits only depends on non profit issues , charitable and governmental organisation. Non-profit sector thus includes religious congregations, universities, hospitals, environmental groups, art museums, youth recreation associations, civil rights groups, community development organisations, labour unions, political parties, social clubs and others (Boris and Steuerle, 1999). The non-profit sector exists to benefit society. Within the non-profit sector, there is a rich and dynamic diversity of cause and organisations. Without the many thousands of nonprofits, with their many millions of volunteers, society would lack valuable services, diversity, and civic participation. The non-profit sector is important because it provides services that would not be performed by the business sector. Many services needed by society do not generate a profit and are, therefore, unattractive to the business sector (Wymer et al, 2006).

Non-profit organisations have started to adopt business-like techniques (Goerke, 2003) used in the for-profit sector as they are becoming increasingly confronted with market pressures typical of for-profit organisations, like competition for funding and the need to earn money to fulfill their mission (Andreasen and Kotler, 2003; Dolnicar et al., 2008). These techniques and approaches have been recognised as important to non-profits by the academic field (Gonzalez et al., 2002); one in particular is especially important – the marketing concept – which advocates and understanding of the customer (Day, 1994). Instead of accepting the marketing concept and beginning the marketing process with the customer and investigating what the market actually needs and wants (Gonzalez et al., 2002), non-profit organisations have an “organisation-centered” marketing mindset and may falsely believe that their product or service is needed by the market (Andreasen and Kotler, 2003). A number of other researchers agree with this viewpoint in emphasizing the importance of market orientation for the non-profit sector (Macedo and Pinho, 2006).


Cancer Research UK’s aim is to reduce the number of deaths from cancer. Around 300,000 people are diagnosed with cancer in the UK every year. Every two minutes someone is told they have the disease. And every year more than 150,000 people die from the disease. Cancer remains people’s greatest health fear. It is difficult to overstate the scale of the cancer problem and the impact it has on the lives of hundreds of thousands of people every year. (Cancer Research)

Marketing strategy

A strategy is a plan for the actions taken to attain one or more organisational goals. ”The task of strategy formation is one of achieving a match between the organisation’s internal skills, capabilities, and resources on the one hand and all of the relevant external considerations on the other hand” (Thompson and Strickland, 1986, p. 74). An institutional goal for a business might be to increase its revenue at a moderate but steady rate or diversify its customer base. The compilation of an organisation’s institutional goals and the means to reach them forms a strategic plan. SWOT analysis is a frequently used tool to develop a strategic plan. The central focus of a SWOT analysis is to recognize opportunities and avoid threats while weighing an organisation’s strengths and weaknesses (Bryson, 1988).

Although many non-profits may view marketing as a business activity, Kotler and Levy (1969) believe that marketing plays a very important role in the lives of non-profit organisations. They argued that all organisations undertake marketing whether they know it or not, therefore they must possess a satisfactory understanding of it. Furthermore, the non-profit sector has characteristics of marketplace problems (Kotler, 1979) where memberships decline, costs soar, and competition is fierce. Owing to these indicators, it was suggested that marketing had a great deal to offer the third sector in order to “survive, grow, and strengthen their contributions to the general welfare” (Kotler, 1979, p. 44). Complicating characteristics of non-profits’ organisational structure include non-financial objectives, multiple stakeholders (Bruce, 1995), a competitive-collaborative relationship with other organisations in the field, and the balance between financial pressures and the mission (Gallagher and Weinberg, 1991). These characteristics make it very difficult to ascertain success and may lead to their disregard of marketing.

Such strategies include the identification of customers who are most interested in supporting their mission (market segmentation), ensuring an image is built that is attractive to those people (product positioning), the development of communication messages most attractive to these people (advertising) and communicating with them through channels these people regularly use (place). Consequently, the assumption underlying the present study is that – despite the fact that non-profit organisations are distinctly different from for-profit organisations – market orientation can significantly increase the effectiveness of non-profit organisations in achieving their mission (Lazarevski, 2009).

In addition, Intellectual capital is capable of adapting to the challenges posed by the non-profit environment in the knowledge economy because some of the theoretical roots of IC come from the internal focus associated with core competence theory (Mouritsen et al. 2005). Intellectual capital helps to shift SSNPOs’ strategic focus to intellectual resources, including knowledge, skills and experience. This is important to SSNPOs, because strategic activities and changes that are brought to the organisations will be mainly driven by internal initiatives by paid employees and volunteers rather than external forces such as government agencies. Therefore, resistance to those strategic activities and changes by volunteers and employees is likely to be lowered (Kong, 2007). Cancer Research Organisations has an advantage for the society and should approach in all means to get funding and branding. Nonetheless, brand of any non-profit body is equally important considering the promotion and place of the 4Ps. “Non-Profit institutions can introduce marketing in a number of ways, such as appointing a marketing committee or task force, hiring an advertising agency or marketing research firm, hiring a marketing consultant, or appointing a marketing director or marketing vice president” (Kotler, January 1979).

In 2008/09 Cancer Research was funded by 433 Million Pounds where 80% of the money is spent on the cancer research. Cancer research UK uses various methods to raise funds making donation is the most common where people donate money to the charity in various ways like some donate on their special events like on their wedding anniversary or birthday and some donate funds to the charity in memory of their loved ones .Cancer Research charity earns its third of their total funding which help in fighting the deadly disease. Some people donate money in this ways so that they don’t want to miss their continuity after their death and some donate in remembrance of the others. One can also join a local group which raise funds to the Cancer Research UK or he/she can create their own committee which helps in raising funds to the charity organisation. In order to collect funds through their shops, Cancer Research UK has set-up around 600 shops across the UK. By visiting one these shops and buying something from there donates the charity. If one is interested in raising funds for Cancer Research UK, they can do by participating any of the various events which were organised by the charity. Some of the events the Cancer Research UK carries out are like flagship, women-only Race for Life, Run 10K which is a popular event held by the charity and there are some other events like Relay For Life, Shine and a half or full walking marathon which is carried at nights through which one also participate and raise funds. People can join internship schemes provided by the Cancer Research UK as volunteers and help raise funds by working at cancer charity shops or they can also participate in events held by charity and help them. Cancer Research UK does get funds from Government as well but in smaller amounts which it spent on specific projects like it got two and half a million from Dept. of Health which it used for developing anti-tobacco campaigns.(Cancer Research)


Political factor: Private donations make up the majority of Cancer Research financial resources, and by limiting the amount they receive from governmental sources, Cancer Research remains financially independent (Hannagan, 2001) however now cancer research is closely monitoring the policies that each party comes up with and comparing them to what they think cancer research has produced a handy guide to help parliamentary candidates as they campaign in their local areas. The guide, ‘How to campaign with confidence about cancer’, gives candidates an introduction to what cancer is and how they can find out more. Commit to Beat Cancer campaign which calls on the next government to make the UK’s cancer outcomes among the best in Europe in the next ten years. The campaign also asks our supporters to contact their local prospective parliamentary candidates asking them to sign up to our ‘Cancer Commitment’. The commitment contains the same policy calls that appear in our manifesto. Thousands of our supporters have emailed their candidates. Already over 400 candidates across the country have signed up and we’ve sent them a wallet-sized commitment card so that they can show their support for the campaign.

Economical Factors: Cancer Research relies on donations from the public for two key reasons: to ensure the freedom to provide humanitarian assistance whenever and wherever it is needed, and to remain independent from political, religious and economic interests. Regular donations give Cancer Research the freedom to provide medical aid to those who need it most and allow them to react swiftly to emergencies as soon as they occur .cancer research can be affected by changes in disposable income, although the effect may not be as immediately obvious. When the purchasing power is reduced cancer research may see a little change in their funding in the short term, but if the reduction in the spending power id reflection of a downturn in the national economy, its funding will be reduced in longer term (Hannagan, 2001).

Social Factors: Non-profit marketing needs to take account of the basic believe in particular society. With in a society, there will be subcultures of people with shared values and these may influence the work of cancer research.

Technological factors: The development of new products changes such as product which is used in treatment of different diseases, development of new equipments used for the recognition of new diseases may affect the cancer research operations because in marketing terms, institution will often want to emphasize their use of modern equipment and technologies, particularly in comparison to their competitors (Hannagan, 2001).



World Class Research with a strong team of researchers makes the awareness of cancer to public by preventing it in early stages. Unlike other viral diseases Cancer is a disease where the precautions cannot be taken care. That is one of the strongest strength where people will be interested to invest or fund in saving lives of many and down the next generation. Cancer Research UK is almost proved that the disease can be cured in the initial stages. (Annual Report, 2008/09)

The interactive, informative website where all the fact sheets are revealed made one of the most trustable Cancer Research Organisations. This is one of the strongest strengths where people who donate money will feel glad.

Though it is a purely non-governmental body, the amount spend on the research and development made Cancer Research UK 48rd position in Times Top 100 Graduate Employers List. The scenario of cancer being a most effective disease, people pays attention towards the research and development where each person doesn’t need an explanation of what the funding exactly does. So, Cancer Research UK which is one of the first span entries in the market got a good response.

Researchers dedicated to the work.

  • Strong commitment by Cancer Research to the donors.
  • More than 4,500 plus doctors, scientists and nurses are supported by Cancer Research UK.
  • Cancer Research UK supports the grant funded researchers based in UK universities, hospitals and institutes. It is proven that high quality researchers are made by Cancer Research UK.
  • It handles approximately 285,000 new cases of cancer every year.
  • As many of the developed countries and developing countries are showing interest in cancer research and UK is one of the leading countries in doing cancer research. Thus, there are excellent chances of good connections across the globe.


  • The funds collected by different means are always will be short of as the research itself is a lengthy process.
  • Once it reaches the saturation of people funding then the problem of funding will be serious.


  • With the help of Cancer Research UK, there are chances of getting new drugs into the market which are Cancer Preventive drugs.
  • Cancer Research UK is one of the leading research institute or organisation in UK, thus it has world recognition and can have a global impact. Hence, the funds collection will be improved.
  • Till now government has not funded to Cancer Research UK, so there are many chances where government can support and act as a backbone to the cancer research UK.
  • Students, doctors, scientists and nurses will be interested to work in an organisation as Cancer Research UK. Hence, the funding can be reduced in the future to grow further.


  • As the Cancer Research purely depends on the public funding the main threat is Funding. If funding is not sufficient for the research exercise then the process chain has to stop.
  • The trained scientists and doctors of other countries may not work with Cancer Research UK for longer period where knowledge banks need to be refreshed rather than updated.


Although researchers appear to largely agree that the adoption of a market oriented perspective as well as marketing tools is important for Non profit Organisations (Andreasen and Kotler, 2003). It can be argued that market orientation is not a relevant concept for cancer research because its mission (product) is defined in advance and cannot be changed in dependence of market needs. However, there is a wide range of other marketing strategies and instruments available to Cancer Research that can be implemented without changing or denying their true mission. Such strategies include the identification of customers who are most interested in supporting their mission (market segmentation), ensuring an image is built that is attractive to those people (product positioning), the development of communication messages most attractive to these people (advertising) and communicating with them through channels these people regularly use (place).

Market segmentation and target market

The selection of target market segment is (together with the positioning decision) the foundation for most marketing programs. Yet there are few models for the selection of market segments. The segmentation decision is one of the major meeting grounds between marketing research and modelling, since models used for the selection of target segment require considerable information on the size of segments, their key characteristics, expected competitive activities, and expected market response of given segment to the offering of the firm and its competitors (Moorthy, 1984) The company will basically target the following market segments as donors (Kelly, 1998).

  1. High-income earners
  2. Hospice centers
  3. Collectors and bookworms
  4. House-movers
  5. Corporate entities, basically office employees rarely sales, marketing and mobile ones

Fundraising strategy

Increasingly, fundraising practitioner literature is focusing on the growing importance of relationship cultivation with all donors rather than devoting resources to marketing the organisation to donor publics. Rather than simply focusing the cultivation of major gift donors, practitioners have recognized that the same principles can be applied to all donors (Waters, 2008). By dedicating more time to donor relations, Worth (2002) says that these principles can result in increased donor loyalty to the organization.

Kelly (2000) maintains that stewardship is the second most important step in the fundraising process. She advocates that fundraising practitioners must incorporate four elements of stewardship. Cancer Research official fundraising plan should be: reciprocity, which allows the Cancer Research to demonstrate its gratitude for the gift; responsibility, which means that the Cancer Research uses the gift in a socially responsible manner; reporting, which includes the basic principles of demonstrating accountability; and relationship nurturing, which includes regular communication and cultivation activities. These principles will help the Cancer Research and fundraisers maintain ethical standards as well as ensure continued fundraising success. In setting out the basic principles of the fundraising process, Rosso (1993) makes it clear that if Cancer Research wants to ensure its longevity then it should be prepared to dedicate time to developing relationships with its donors. Nudd (1993) insisted that organisations that conduct research on donors are in the best situation to cultivate relationships because of their understanding of their donors.

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Wagner (2002) ideas suggest that Cancer Research should search for new donors or work with their current donor databases to evolve their donors. Nudd (1993) suggests that Cancer Research – if it ensures its longevity – must be ready and prepared to do both. She acknowledges that organisation must constantly be on the lookout for new individuals who are interested in the cause or the Cancer Research and try to bring them on board as a donor. However, she maintains that organisations hould put more focus on donors who already have an established relationship with the organisation because past donor performance is the greatest indicator of future giving (Waters, 2008).

Just as the public relations literature is beginning to discuss the different relationship maintenance strategies, fundraising literature is also rich with varying strategies on how the Cancer Research donor relationship can be enhanced through cultivation. Although practitioner literature gives advice on securing face-to-face business meetings with major gift donors over lunch and in private settings (Sargeant and Jay, 2004), others are beginning to realise that relationship maintenance strategies can benefit donors at all levels, not just the elite donor. Kelly’s (2000) basic formula for stewardship involves thanking the donor and then continued correspondence where the Cancer Research shows that it has used the donation wisely and responsibly. Cancer Research is encouraged to add donors to its regular mailing list to either provide them with newsletters and annual reports (Neal, 2001), additional fundraising solicitations for future campaigns (Rosso, 1993).

Online fundraising

Online fundraising is growing rapidly in importance. Cancer Reaserch needs to send individual email messages, encouraging them to click on link that will take them to the Cancer Reaserch websites, where a donation can easily be made with a credit or debit card. Cancer Reaserch should also include organisations websites address in their direct mail materials because some supporters may find donating online more convenient than returning the direct mail response card. Traditional direct mail is also appropriate for the internet direct mail. Because the internet is a different medium, the development of creative materials will be different. Most e-mail applications allow for multimedia text and visual elements. This combination creates opportunities for much greater creativity in fund raising offers. Furthermore, because links cane be embedded in to the massage, much more information can be made available to receivers who desire it. There are several reason online fundraising is growing. The proportion of the population that has an internet connection continues to grow. The proportion of the interne-connected population that has a high speed internet connection also continues to grow (Wymer et al, 2006).

Cancer Research relationship marketing strategy

Relationship marketing aims to construct deeper relationships with beneficiaries than those likely to emerge from ad hoc contacts. Unlike most relationships in marketing, these relationships need not be long term, as charities invariably want their beneficiaries to recover from whatever ailment is afflicting them. (Gronroos, 1990) recognised explicitly that while relationship marketing attempted to establish and develop relationships, it did not necessarily involve long-term relationships.) Long-term connections between a beneficiary and a Cancer Research could in fact emerge, e.g. through a beneficiary becoming a donor to; supporter or ambassador of; or volunteer worker for the Cancer Research campaign concerned, but this is not essential in order to justify the application of a relationship marketing approach. It is vital nevertheless that the organisation look at transactions with beneficiaries beyond their ad hoc use of the charity’s services (Conway, 1997), Cancer Research needs to keep in touch with beneficiaries to see how they are getting on (Bruce, 1994); communicate on a two-way basis, and actively seek feedback.

Furthermore, practical measures whereby charities can encourage actual or potential beneficiaries to want to have an ongoing relationship with an Cancer Research include “relationship advertising” (Stern, 1997) whereby the Cancer Research needs to provide information on customised services and seeks to convince potential beneficiaries that they will be “well-cared for” (Hochschild, 1983) . Relationship advertising, according to Stern (1997), stimulates thoughts, feelings and actions relevant to relationships and to what a relationship with Cancer Research will involve. Further relationship-building devices include two-way communications (involving freepost mail responses, toll-free telephone numbers, e-mail helplines, etc.), database marketing (with personalised, targeted communications – Berry, 1995), the provision of incentives to interact with the health campaign, subscriptions to Cancer Research activities, and “personal” information on developments within the Cancer Research and its planned activities. Personal information on Cancer Research activities will extend to news about its employees, profiles of well-known celebrities who support the charity, and “insider information” about intended future programmes (Bennet, 2005).

Global Move

Cancer Research can widen its role by going international joining hands with international cancer organisation like world cancer congress and other medical organisation as donor community also impart obligations for constructive engagement with multilateral agencies on broader humanitarian issues. This dialogue complements its more focused geographic interests by demonstrating its commitment to alleviating suffering and addressing complex global issues. Cancer research should increase the level of engagement with selected humanitarian agencies in order to better reflect cancer research interests.

Future campaigns and strategies

Cancer research will continues to work both on improving access to existing treatments and stimulating the development of newer and better medical tools that take into account the needs of people in poor countries. Cancer research will push for continued improvements in medical practice. Cancer research also continue to support efforts to reshape the way medical Research and Development is funded so that medical innovation serves those most in need and is not only market-driven as at present.


Strategic planning for Cancer Research is important and probably will become part of the standard repertoire of public and non-profit planners. It is important, of course, for planners to be very careful about how they engage in strategic planning, since every situation is at least somewhat different and since planning can be effective only if it is tailored to the specific situation in which it is used. Cancer Research UK should more often try to collaborate with other charities, pharmaceuticals and professional bodies in order to eradicate the cause as soon as possible Knowledge is critical to for Cancer research, as a result of the public sector reform movement, NPOs are forced to change the way they manage and operate their activities. Cancer research needs to use its organizational resources more effectively in the competitive non-profit environment (Waters, 2008).


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