Oct 9, 2020 in Business

Marketing opportunities of the technological industry

The most crucial task of any business or organization is to identify the unclaimed business opportunities. Any businesss success depends on its managements ability to come up with precise and accurate investment opportunities (Tidd, 2006). High tech industry is one of the fastest growing sectors of global economy and thus the decisions made by each of the players can shift the industry in tangible ways. This paper discusses the marketing opportunities of the technological industry, with a case study of Apple Inc.

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Current Market Situation

Apple Inc. is a multinational technological corporation which focuses on producing of a wide range of consumer electronics. Among some of its products are personal computers and laptops, wearable electronics, computer and mobile phone software, servers. Apple Inc. The company is most known for its iPhone lines of smartphones, iPod devices, and iPad tablet computers. The company was founded in 1979 in California, and it has expanded to UAE market in 1991. Since its foundation in the UAE, Apple Inc. has managed to introduce some of its products and services. The most common Apple products in the UAE market are Mac computers and laptops (MacBook introduced in 2008, MacBook Air, and Mac Mini introduced in 2007). Also, Apple offers iPod devices (iPod Shuffle and iPod Nano, and iPod Touch), iPhone smartphones, iPad, Apple TV devices, and Apple wrist watches (Baldwin & Scott, 2013). The offered services of Apple Inc. in the UAE are the Apple Store online, iCloud Apple music, and the iOS app store in released in 2009.

Apple Inc. has a very organized marketing structure. According to Moskaluk & Bradley (2006), the most important department of any company or business is the marketing division. The management of Apple has invested a lot of capital and human resources in ensuring that its marketing department fully meets its targets and produces results. The primary activity of marketing division lies in marketing the companys products and services to all residents of the UAE. In UAE, a local marketing division was established in the year 1992, just one year after the company opened its branch in the region. The organizational structure of this department has two main branches, which focus on the traditional marketing approaches and methods of digital marketing. The traditional marketing department has the responsibility of ensuring the companys good public relations and offline advertisements. On the other hand, the digital marketing divisions main responsibility and focus is SEO and marketing in the social media. The traditional marketing department has 25 persons working in it, while the digital marketing department has 20 people. Lastly, the main strengths of the Apples marketing structure are that it is comprised of well-educated and experienced people, while its main disadvantage is that it covers a very wide area and sometimes the funding and resources are not adequate.

Those microenvironmental factors that have the greatest impact on the brand existence in the UAE are the suppliers, customers, and competitors. On the other hand, the macroenvironmental factors that influence the companys operations are demographic factors, the technological forces and the political forces (Wu, 2012). These factors determine the performance of Apple in the UAE, and its management tries as much as possible to take advantage of each of the mentioned factors. Lastly, the main change that has a great impact on the companys marketing in the UAE is advancement of technology among the youths. This advancement has led to a reduction in the sales of traditional gadgets and conversely increased the volume of sales of tablets and smartphones.

Market Description

Apple Inc. has managed to capture over 45% of the UAE IT market (Popadiuk & Choo, 2006). Most of the Apples products consumers are young people and large companies. Young people buy Apples tablets, iPhones and iPods, while companies and corporations tend to purchase laptops and desktop computers. The youth like Apples products because they are durable and they have features unique to Apples consumer devices. Moreover, the companies prefer computers from this company because they computers are durable and offer competitive operational effectiveness. A study by Lheem (2007) predicts that if Apple manages to support the current trend in the future, it might be able to capture over 75% of the UAE market by 2020. Due to advancement in the IT sector, it is more than likely that the needs of the young people will change, and Apple should always make sure that it changes its lines of products according to time and needs of the consumers.

There are two major market segments in the UAE. The first part is made up of primarily young people (below 35 years) and multinational companies. Young people tend to prefer mobile phones and Apple services (Apple Store, iCloud, etc.), while large companies prefer Apples desktop computers and laptops. In the near future, these segments might increase, depending on the efforts of the company to produce such products that would fit everyone (Van Den Nieuwenhuizen & Lee, 2012). The Apple Company should ensure that it produces goods which suit senior citizens and small firms as well. Through this, the number of current market segments might increase to four, and will span the categories of young people, senior citizens, multinational companies and small growing firms.

Marketing Opportunities

There are several possible marketing opportunities in the two market segments. Table 1 below demonstrates the product market expansion grid, showing several possible opportunities for Apple Inc.

Table 1

Product-Market Expansion Grid (Apple Company)

 

Existing Products

New Products

Existing Markets

Market Penetration Strategies

Increase smartphone sales through giving subsidies and promotion for specific mobile phones

Increase sales to older persons

Promote sales to small scale businesses

Product Development Strategies

Improvement of the current features in iPhones and iPads

Increasing the computational power of Apple desktop computers and laptops

Providing free repair services to all of Apples products

 

New Markets

Market Development Strategies

Open new branches in several parts of UAE

Promote sales of services to companies

Collaborate with other IT firms in the UAE

Fund and sponsor sporting activities, such as football championships in the UAE

Diversification Strategies

Forming alliances with the major companies in the UAE

Coming up with a new budget for the Apple Company

Promotion of the after sale services

The main goal of the Apple Inc. is to target the potential market, which comprises of older people (above 40 years) and small businesses. The company has put in place adequate measures for ensuring that this plan comes true. In order to attract senior consumers, the company will start manufacturing relatively small gadgets and products, with features that might be of particular interest to older persons. On the other hand, Apple plans to attract small companies by coming up with computers with better features, which are at the same time relatively cheaper. By doing this, Apple would have significantly increased its potential customer base.

Analysis from Market Research

This section covers the market research of Apple Inc. The primary tool for data collection is survey, which contains a set of questions with closed-ended answers. The study takes place on a random sample of 10 individuals and ten companies from UAE. Each of the respondents is expected to select one response from the offered response categories for each of the questions.

In the survey, the first question determines whether the respondent is an individual or a company. Then, the second question attempts to identify which of the Apples products the respondent currently uses. The response categories are the Mac computers (desktop and laptops), iPod, iPhone, iPad, Apple TV and Apple wrist watches. The survey also tries to identify which of the competitors products does the consumer most prefers. The research investigates the level of satisfaction from Apples product as well as satisfaction for a competitors alternative product. Lastly, the survey looks at the reasons for satisfaction with both Apples products and competitors alternatives, as well as a customers current needs. This will lead to identification of possible opportunities for the company.

The analysis is undertaken by utilizing SPSS software package, and the output can be found in the appendix. It is clear from the data in Figure 1that most people are satisfied with Apples products because of their durability and competitive prices as well as their features. Then, it is also clear that the most dissatisfying feature is that most products have low processing speed. Figure 2 reveals that the customers prefer laptops from the competitors than those from Apple. Figure 3 shows that the most common gadget among the customers is Mac products, and the least common is Apple TV. Figure 4 reveals that most people want Apple Inc. to improve the durability of its products and lower the prices. Lastly, Table 2 below shows that the average rating of Apple is 4 with a standard deviation of 0.92 while that of the competitors is 2.7 with a standard deviation of 1.2.

Table 2

Descriptive Statistics

 

N

Minimum

Maximum

Mean

Std. Deviation

In a scale of 1 to 5, give your level of satisfaction with the Apples products.

20

2.00

5.00

4.0000

.91766

In a scale of 1 to 5, give your level of satisfaction with the competitors products.

20

1.00

5.00

2.7000

1.21828

Valid N (listwise)

20

       
 

In conclusion, it is clear that Apple Inc. has quite solid marketing structures. Moreover, there are several investment opportunities which this company can venture in. This research reveals that the least performing companys products are Apple TV and Apple wrist watches. Also, it is evident that the customers want Apple to improve the durability of products and reduce the prices. By doing so, the company can attract the market of small scale businesses and elderly population in the UAE.

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