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  • Subject area(s): Marketing
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  • Published on: 14th September 2019
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Title page 1 Table of Contents 2 Executive Summary 3 Introduction 4 Target Segment 5 Brand Positioning 7 Marketing Mix recommendations:

 PLC and the Diffusion of Innovation 9

 Type of consumer product 9

 Product 9

 Place 10

 Promotion 11

 Price 11

Summary of Marketing Mix 13 Conclusion 15 References

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Executive Summary:

The objective of this report is to explore and propose a marketing strategy for the Apple IPhone 6S analysed in the previous assignments 2 & 3.

This report will assess the 4Ps of the marketing mix to effectively convey and implement brand positioning.

The report demonstrates that there are many improvements in Apple's current marketing strategy in regards to the IPhone 6S. These improvements have been depicted in the recommendations page. However due to limitations of time and resources, the current marketing strategy unequivocally remains the best marketing strategy in the current times thus this report only highlights the areas which could be improved.

The research undertaken for this report demonstrates that the following changes could be made to the 4P's of marketing mix.

Product: Apple has a firm grasp of what their product needs to deliver and have achieved that. Except for a product with higher quality that could be delivered in the following years, no changes can be recommended.

Place: Apple knows how to sell their products to the consumers with the use of network operators. However releasing their own phone plans would allow them to achieve higher amount of sales but this is unlikely to happen as most network operators already dominate the industry. Therefore Apple employs the use of online and non-online stores well and there is no changes to be recommended.

Promotion: Apple could place an emphasis on the promotion of their phone by doing a lot of more social media advertisement as they mainly rely on third parties to do the advertising for them. However this would change their intended image as an exclusive product.

Price: The price of this product is too high and needs to be decreased. This could be because of the extensive after sale updates however; the price is much higher than other companies.

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Introduction:

The report is aimed to analyse the brand, sub-brand and current marketing strategy of the Apple IPhone 6S to correspond intricate findings in order to advance and enhance the phone's current marketing mix and promotions.

This research and findings of this report have been executed by an independent consultant and has been authorized by Apple's Marketing Managers.

The information used in this report was conveniently made available by Apple and there were no real complications during the research process.

The report consists of data about the brand positioning through the brand and sub- brand, an assessment of the target segment, an analysis of the 4Ps' of the marketing mix and recommendations for development and improvement. This report has been sourced through an array of resources including the Apple website to better understand the product.

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Table 2.0 Segment Attractiveness table

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1. Target Segment

Consumers that desire a product with high usage can be identified and these can be all viewed below. These segments are important in developing new products and in brand awareness.

For this report, the “high usage” target segment has been chosen as mobile phones are used throughout the phone and as most humans “can't live without their iPhones.” (Wagner, 2015)

Along with these, the consumers want a more exclusive feel to their product that has higher quality and an unique look and as such Apple is known to have a unique interface and software system.

It is a must to differ the Apple brand of smart phone to those sold by its competitors and this can be reinforced through advertising and marketing elevating brand loyalty.

Table 1.0 Segmentation of mobile phones

   Segments(u se frequency)

   Quality of phone

 Technological features

   Price spending

  Low

   Medium

 High

   Low

  Moderate

   High

 High

   Medium

  High

    High

  High

    High

    Segment

   Size and growth

  Structural Attractiveness

    Matches brand and sub brand's resources and objectives

   Low

 The want for the latest technology has increased and therefore compulsive buying has increased. Apple's strategy is very well in play and does not need to change

Difficulty as many users believe Android is better than Apple and the constant argument about Android versus iOS.

Lots of strong competitors but only one main one- Samsung New features and longer battery attracts new users.

  Matches as many users are trying to get the latest technology.

   Medium

   Full time jobs leads to a mobile phone being used

  Price compared to other smart phones is a little high but this shows

    Interested in the product as iPhones are associated with

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    a lot. Therefore this means a better salary so these users can afford the phone even more

  exclusiveness and this is what most people want.

    exclusiveness and the want to impress people with materialistic items comes into play.

   High

  Spend more time on the phone than any other segment. Mainly work from home or work in an office with a lot of communication with employees

 Directed towards people that are always communicating.

More difficult as iPhones are expensive and therefore network operators charge more for a bigger moile phone brand

   This is the perfect segment for Apple as everyone uses a phone. With multiple features such as facetime and facetime audio users can save on money by using wifi to call their employees and overseas for company related work.

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2.Brand Positioning

The Apple IPhone 6S is a product in a small and competitive industry however their product is very unique but sold for a higher price. Apple strongly relies on the loyalty of its consumers when selling products at a higher price than Apple's competitors in order to surpass them. This means relying on their sterling brand image and their constantly update features and software. The IPhone 6S is actually far more expensive than its competitor however it provides the exclusiveness and sleek design and therefore it remains near the top of the market.

Apple's selling proposition is the great after sale service which includes new apps being released on the app store, technical support, the intelligent assistant called Siri which enables users to command the phone with its voice. The product is very similar to its competition, the Samsung S6 Edge in its practicality but the software platform and the way these two products are is completely different.

Apple and Samsung are very similar in the product class as they both offer the extensive rang of features and updates on their products however the exclusiveness associated with Apple enables it to be perceived as a much higher quality product. The value for money however is a question in play as Apple charges much more for their products in comparison to Samsung, which demonstrates that their price for a smartphone is relatively high. This product is has a high usage rate therefore consumers are much decisive when comparing the specifications including the sound and display quality of the phone where IPhone beats all other competitors making it the clear choice for many users and thus outweighing the high cost.

Table 3: developing the positioning statement

    Important

  Technical support of Apple is exceptional and very reliable as there are multiple Apple stores in convenient locations. However more availability for urgent matters would place Apple ahead of every other competitor.

   Distinctive

  The Apple brand itself is very distinctive as it runs iOS, which is very different to its competitor that runs android software.

   Pre-emptive

   Apple's Applecare+ is one of a kind and offers exceptional technical and hardware support

   Unique

 With most after service sale regarding the phone itself, Apple directly provides the after sale service which is the same as every other company however Apple has “AppleCare+ that provides hardware service and technical support from Apple.” (Apple, 2016)

   Superior

   These warranties are very easily assessed as users can log in online and launch a claim or book an appointment rather

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Low price

High price

Reliable after- sale service

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    than wait on the phone or in store.

   Communicable

  The readily information on their website and available in store explains offers to consumers

   Affordable

 Technical support is usually purchased when the product is purchased as users are already paying an exclusive price. If the price is decreased these warranty prices could be increased.

   Profitable

   Often the added on price will result in profit as most users do not experience issues with their product.

 Figure 1: Positioning Map: Reliability of after-sale service vs Price

 Samsung S6 Edge IPhone 6S

    Not Innovative

Highly innovative

Unreliable after- sale service

 Figure 2: Positioning Map: Level of Market

High Market Share

Samsung S6 Edge IPhone 6S

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Low Market Share

3.Marketing Mix Recommendations

3.1 PLC and the Diffusion of Innovation

The smartphone industry is constantly changing and never fully developed however it is a very well known product so it is safe to say that Apple's IPhone 6S is in the middle of maturity stage of its product lifestyle.

Apple's market share in 2016 was at 11.8% with the shipment volume of 40.4 million(Rossignol, 2016)and is also ranked 8th on the global 2000(as of May 2016(Forbes, Welcome, 2016)) on forbes (Forbes Welcome, 2016). However compared to the previous year there was a “decline from 47.5 million units” which represented “a 15.0% year- over-year decline”. These numbers demonstrated that the marketing for Apple is weakening, however it could also mean that the Apple Brand's marketing needs to bettered. However there has been an increase in Samsung's market share from 21.3% to 22.4% making Samsung “the most popular smartphone vendor” (Rossignol, 2016) indicating that some of Apple's market has shifted to Samsung further confirming that the marketing for Apple has weakened over the previous financial year.

This report will mainly be targeting high usage consumers as they understand and recognize the value and importance of a higher price for better quality. These consumers are often aware of exclusive features of Apple's Iphone 6S in comparison to other products.

This product has grown within the market and is well known and used as technology on the phone often improves.

3.2 Type of Consumer Product

This product falls under the shopping category of consumer products. “The target of Apple IPhone is premium customers.” (Bhasin, 2016) Therefore depicting that the Apple IPhone 6S is an infrequent purchase and requires a lot of research and effort and in this the brand name is a very important aspect. This product is easily accessible at most high-end electronic shops and also at phone dealerships and is usually promoted through mass media, promotions and advertising.

   3.3Product

Figure 3: conceptualizing the product

   Augmented Product:

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  Technical support and extensive information back up provided by apple for complete back up and support by Apple and network support by network operators

represented conceptulisation of the

allows the marketers to discover the appropriate information that is fundamental in the decision making process.

The diagram represents the essential requirement of a mobile phone, which include texting, and calling and how those have been developed over time and how Apple perceives them now. Through the diagram, it is ensured that brand positioning is effectively corresponded and implemented by underlining the significance of high quality features when combined with efficient and reliable after sale service.

3.4 Place

Apple uses a holistic approach to distribution, which involves imposing of divergent distribution channels (Greenspan, 2015). By using a selective distribution strategy, Apple's exclusivity limits the market reach.

The electronic With the exception of Apple stores and network operators, Apple has authorized retailers and uses their fulfillment services through third party sellers (Greenspan, 2015). The product is widely displayed by several companies and network operators and demonstrates that Apple is thorough in employ a variety of “online and non-online distribution channels.” (Greenspan, 2015)

3.5 Promotion

Apple's extreme success in generating ridiculous amount of sales is a result of Integrated Marketing Communication (IMC). Apple is constantly trying to improve the consumer's experiences (Qijunmo, 2015) by constant software updates and new features and designs. The uniqueness of the phone itself in its software systems demonstrates that it depicts creativity and exclusiveness. “Apple spends minimum efforts for their IPhones” (Qijunmo, 2015).

Actual Product:

Icloud

Core Product:

A product on which consumers can call and text others

A smartphone with built in wifi, camera, video recording, touch id, apple pay, gps, siri, apps, etc with a led backlit widescreen

  graphically product depicts and

The

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In reality, Apple is paid by network operators to advertise IPhones for their business. These include different phone plans to “remain competitive” in the carrier industry (Qijunmo, 2015). The only actual promotion Apple does in the press conference at the release of a new product and actually does minimum social media promotion due to numerous Apple fans posting and attracting people.

The only real advertising that Apple does for its IPhones is their the company's website and their stores. Other forms of their promotion includes personal selling where the employee themselves talk to the consumers in store trying to influence the purchase of the employee. Apple rarely does any sales promotion but when these do occur, these are in store itself by bundling a newer product with an older product for a discounted price. (Greenspan, 2015)

The most effective form of promotion that Apple has is the leaking of new products and press release to maximize publicity. (Greenspan, 2015) Apple could promote their products much more with the use of media by exposing new features and the exclusiveness of the IPhone that only the users would know. This will more effectively communicate the product rather than through network operators and Apple fans only.

3.6 Price

The pricing strategy will be comparing the price of the two most popular phones as the market for phones is being constantly changed and new products charge a higher price for new technology.

The constant battle between Samsung and Apple has led to many users preferring one to the other and being very loyal to it(Wong, 2016). Apple and Samsung constantly release new items with inflated prices to consumers. These products are often still bought more than other product in the market therefore if Apple could increase the current price of their product, it could have the potential to become a market leader and outsell its competition.

Another route to complete market domination could be a decrease in the product price increasing its sales as many consumers shy away from Apple due to its very expensive prices. This may result in short term losses but this might be the sacrifice Apple needs to make in order to dominate the market share.

Table 2: Price comparison (all prices are in AUD):

Please note prices were taken from Apple and JB Hi Fi due to IPhone 6S being out of stock on the JB Hi Fi website. These prices were on display as of 30th October 2016 and may vary.

    IPhone 6S

  Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge

   929

   798

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Summary of the Marketing Mix

Table 4: Summary of the 4Ps

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    Mix

   What are the brand and sub-brand currently doing

  My recommendations

    How will this effectively communicate and support the brand positioning

   Product

  High quality product with a different interface to its competitors

 No changes recommended unless a newer product is developed.

   The product that IPhone sells is similar to its competitors but its interface and software is different.

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    Through effective communication and implementation of the brand positioning, Apple needs to demonstrate how much better this product is than its competitors.

   Place

  Sell through network operators and Apple itself

 Apple sells their product well with network operators as a phone need a sim to operator according to its function. No changes recommended.

   Apple is selling the product through network operators and their own brand shops itself, which supports the brand loyalty that Apple is looking for. Along with this Apple's Applecare+ that allows user to insure their phone incase of a phone e malfunction and other issues. This helps to implement our brand positioning,

   Promotion

 Network Operators In-store promotion Apple Fan promotion

Their current strategy is very good however a little self- promotion could lead to an increase in sales.

  Apple's current strategy includes using their network operator and third parties to promote their product. This infact is ingenious, as not only does Apple gets free promotions but also gets paid for it. This demonstrates that Apple has a very powerful position in the mobile phone world however self promotion could demonstrate that Apple is dedicated to its consumers and show those who don't know about the brand, why it is such a popular brand and also communicate our brand positioning effectively.

   Price

   $929

  The price could decrease, as the price is too high in comparison to its competitors.

    The price of the mobile phone could decrease showing its consumers that they care more about the loyalty of a consumer rather than their money and this

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    would help communicate and implement our brand positioning.

 Conclusion

The marketing mix recommendations through product, price, place and promotion demonstrate that Apple has areas that could be improved if they chose to implement an improved brand-positioning plan. This report depicts that the promotion factor of Apple could increase by self-promotion of the product rather than relying on network operators and third parties to promote their product. A decreased price would also result in a high number of sales as Apple charges the most for their product in comparison to its competitor Samsung.

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As a result of these findings, it is safe to say that the marketing mix is logical as each section shows Apple needing to take more action in the selling of their product rather than a reliance on network operators. The recommendations throughout this report could result in an increase in sales and a more consistent marketing mix if it was implemented.

Apple is committed to being an environmentally responsible company and achieve this with their products. The use of many different environmental committees ensures that Apple develops plans for sustainability and ensures that eco-friendly materials are being used in their production.

Apple has been ranked 8th in the Global 2000 for Forbes 2016 and with that was labeled number one is profit and in market value demonstrating that their current marketing mix is implemented greatly.

References

Apple, 2016. Apple - Legal - Sales and Support. [online] Apple.com. Available at: <http://www.apple.com/legal/sales-support/> [Accessed 31 Oct. 2016].

Apple, 2016. iPhone 6s. [online] Apple (AU). Available at: <http://www.apple.com/au/shop/buy- iphone/iphone6s?afid=p238%7Cs754CnvU2- dc_mtid_18707vxu38484_pcrid_106587849262_&cid=aos-au-kwgo-iphone-slid-> [Accessed 28 Oct. 2016].

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Bhasin, H., 2016. Iphone marketing mix - Marketing mix of Apple Iphone. [online] Marketing91.com. Available at: <http://www.marketing91.com/iphone-marketing-mix/> [Accessed 30 Oct. 2016].

Forbes, 2016. Forbes Welcome. [online] Forbes.com. Available at: <http://www.forbes.com/companies/apple/> [Accessed 29 Oct. 2016].

Greenspan, R., 2015. Apple Inc's Marketing Mix (4P's) - Panmore Institute. [online] Panmore Institute. Available at: <http://panmore.com/apple-inc-marketing-mix-4ps> [Accessed 30 Oct. 2016].

Hamka, F., Bouwman, H., Reuver, M. and Kroesen, M., 2013. Telematics and Informatics. 1st ed. [ebook] Netherlands: Delft University of Technology. Available at: <http://www.tbm.tudelft.nl/fileadmin/Faculteit/TBM/Over_de_Faculteit/Afdelingen/Afdeling_Infrastru cture_Systems_and_Services/Sectie_Transportbeleid_en_Logistieke_Organisatie/Medewerkers/Maarte n_Kroesen/Hamka_et_al._T_I_2014.pdf> [Accessed 2 Nov. 2016].

JB Hi Fi, 2016. JB Hi-Fi | Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge, S6 Edge, Galaxy Note 5. [online] Jbhifi.com.au. Available at: <https://www.jbhifi.com.au/phones/galaxy/> [Accessed 31 Oct. 2016].

Qijunmo, 2015. How does Apple promote their iPhones?. [online] Marketing Management Blog. Available at: <https://mpk732t22015.wordpress.com/2015/09/20/how-does-apple-promote-their- iphones/> [Accessed 31 Oct. 2016].

Rossignol, J., 2016. Samsung Doubles Apple's Share of Smartphone Market as Customers Await iPhone 7. [online] Macrumors.com. Available at: <http://www.macrumors.com/2016/07/28/samsung- doubles-apple-share-ahead-iphone-7/> [Accessed 30 Oct. 2016].

Wagner, D., 2015. We Literally Can't Live Without Our iPhones - InformationWeek. [online] InformationWeek. Available at: <http://www.informationweek.com/it-life/we-literally-cant-live- without-our-iphones/a/d-id/1318579> [Accessed 2 Nov. 2016].

Wong, A., 2016. Why Apple iPhones Are So Expensive Rev. 2.0. [online] Tech ARP. Available at: <http://www.techarp.com/articles/why-apple-iphones-are-so-expensive/> [Accessed 30 Oct. 2016].

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