The global market has been characterized with intensified competition, and various organizations have been evaluating and adopting various strategies to ensure their competitiveness. Marketing plays an imperative role in the success of an organization selling its product in the global market. Firms that have been able to draft the best marketing plans have achieved significant success globally while those with poor marketing plans trail in performance. Apple a multinational organization engaged in production, marketing and distribution of telecommunication devices such as phones and Ipads among other products has introduced various innovative products (Krippendorff 2012). For example, the Ipad introduction in the global market required adoption of a comprehensive marketing plan that could facilitate the success of the organization in the global market. In England, the organization has adopted various marketing strategies in marketing of the Ipad.
However, SOSTAC model has been essential in the success of the organization in marketing its products in the UK market. SOSTAC marketing model is a comprehensive marketing model that has been adopted by various organizations in marketing of their products. SOSTAC is an abbreviation of the activities that are carried out, in the model. For example, S means situational analysis O means objectives; S means strategies; T for tactics; A means actions and C for control. Therefore, the model presents a comprehensive approach to all issues in marketing of a product. Apple Inc has used the SOSTAC model in marketing Ipad in the UK. This paper will evaluate and facilitate the development of a marketing plan that can be used in marketing of Ipad in the UK market (PBT Consulting 2012). The paper will provide a comprehensive analysis of the activities involved in the model and their applicability in marketing of the Ipad.
SOSTAC Model Applicability in Marketing Plan for Ipad in UK
This model has successfully been used by various organizations in different disciplines with a significant amount of success. It is essential to understand the flow of the model, as well as its applicability in different stages, in developing the marketing plan for Ipad. The situational analysis aims at evaluating the position of the product in the market in the current period. The situational analysis provides an analysis of the product, and in this case we analyze the Ipad (Krippendorff 2012). This analysis provides simple descriptions of the product and identifies the problems that can be solved by the product.
For example, the Ipad provides various applications that can be used by the users such as the ITV, sky movies Gmail from Google and various games applications. These will enable the users to access important aspects that facilitate gaming and further research from applications such as Google and IBooks. In addition, the Ipad 2 has been attributed to have the best hardware and numerous apps. The Ipad 2 also have been enabled with an iOS 5, and the iCloud, these features are missing in various other Ipads giving an edge in the market.
In the current period, there has been intensified competition between various other brands of tablets such as the Samsung Galaxy Tab, Rim Playbook and the Motorola Xoom. However, the major competitor is the Samsung Galaxy Tab, which has led to the decline in the market share of Ipad especially in the US market. In the UK, the market is expansive, and the trends indicate that the demand of Ipads is more likely to increase. The Apple Inc Ipad is the most popular product with the lion market share (Rahman 2011). However, there has been intensified competition especially from Samsung Galaxy Tab leading to the decline of the market share.
Market share analysis on major tablets in the UK in 2012 and the first quarter of 2013
However, even with the decline of the market share in UK, which has been said to be less that 40%, the world population is moving to the tablet and the change has been fast. Therefore, there is a need for the firm to increase its marketing strategies to increase its competitiveness. Although the Ipad still dominates the market, there is a need to ensure that the organization competitiveness remains high especially given the intensified competition. The firm has been targeting the middle and upper class consumers with interest in owning the gadget and has disposable income. Majority of these consumers enjoy using technological advanced devices, in their daily lives in downloading and listening to music, play games and watch videos (Allsopp 2013). In addition, these consumers use the Apple tablet while at work as professionals in various fields such as fine arts. The demographic pattern of the organization consumers in the UK indicates that 30% of the users are under the age of 30 years, who are students, business people and professionals.
The situational analysis also includes the SWOT analysis of the organization in the market. A SWOT analysis evaluates the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats facing the organization in the UK market. One of the strengths that have enabled the organization to remain relevant and competitive in the UK market is publicity. The organization has been able to establish deep roots in the market, which have increased its publicity in the market. The brand Apple is also an internationally recognized brand in terms of quality, performance and brand recognition. This has enabled the product to remain competitive and relevant in the market. In addition, the firm has been intensifying its marketing campaigns, which have increased the performance of the organization in the market (Allsopp 2013). The Ipad is also a high quality and competitive gadget and hence marketing the product has been easy for the organization.
However, there are various issues affecting the performance of the organization in the UK market. One of the major weakness and threat affecting the firm is the declining market share. This is attributed to the introduction of other competing brands in the market such as, Google Nexus, Samsung Galaxy Tab, among others (Allsopp 2013). The organization marketing campaigns have been deficient as compared to the marketing conducted by competing firms such as Samsung. However, there are various opportunities at the disposal of the organization, which can enable it grow further than the current growth. For example, the trends in the global market and the UK market specifically indicates that the use of tablets is set to increase and more so rapidly. This presents an opportunity for the organization to expand its influence and performance in the market if it develops the right marketing strategies and tools.
Although the market share for Ipad has been declining, the overall market for tablets has continually shown positive and strong indications of growth. In the SOSTAC model, it is imperative to set clear objectives and goals ensuring that the set objectives are measurable and achievable. In developing the marketing plan for the Ipad in the UK market, there is a need to develop clear objectives that are measurable and clear. The factors to consider when setting the objectives are the efforts and abilities of the organization in the market. With the increasing growth of the market for tablets, the organization is formulating marketing plans that will ensure that the organization is able to maintain its market share with the increasing demand for tablets. It has been estimated that in the UK there 14. 1% tablet users (Rahman 2011). The trends show that, by 2017, 52% of the population in the UK will be using the tablets. The objective of the marketing plan is to ensure that 60% of the total tablets in the market will be that of people using the Ipad. In addition, the organization is working on improving the image of Apple products, which will also facilitate the organization to expand through the development of brand.
Ipad Marketing Strategy
The marketing strategy is a reflection of the actions and plans that will facilitate the organization achievement of its objectives. The marketing strategies in this case should consider various factors that will facilitate the organization achievement of its objectives. For example, the firm will have to evaluate and form the core marketing message describing Ipad, employees, the organization core values, mission, business philosophy and customer relations. When the Ipad 2 was introduced the adverts encompassing the product had subscriptions of a description of the organization features. For example, the features highlighted included the aspects of Thinness, Faster, FaceTime, Smart covers and the 10 hour battery life. In introducing the product in the market, Apple was able to create hype, when they introduced the product a week before launching the product (Marketing Minds 2012).
The firm also understands the importance of creating perceptions in the market. It is stated that perceptions are everything in marketing as consumers are able to anticipate the product. The firm was not only creating a perception on Ipad only, but also on the iOS platform in the Ipad. The perception creation had been successful in creating a buzz in the market when the Ipad was introduced in the market. Defining the brand has not been a difficult task for the organization, based on the fact that the organization has been able to establish itself strongly in the market. The Ipad has unique designs, features and colors, as well as unique packaging facilities. The quality of the product is guaranteed, and the firm has established various distribution centres where the Ipad is available for consumers. In addition, the increase in online marketing has also played an imperative role increasing availability of the product in the market and the product is delivered freely to the customers. Positioning statement is another imperative factor when considering the marketing strategies of the Ipad. This considers basis that will be used to facilitate the product competitiveness. For example, Ipad has a broad selection based on features such as the 32 GB, 16 GB choice among others (PBT Consulting 2012). The firm does not compete on the basis of price, but on quality of the product and broad selection.
In launching Ipad, Apple used the strategies of creating perceptions and hype on the prospective consumers prior to the introduction of the product in the market. Apple used various phrases such as that the organization was creating a digital lifestyle through the introduction of the product. In addition, in describing the product the organization used creative and imaginative phrases such as Ipad being a magical and revolutionary product, and it was being sold at an unbelievable price. The organization has a distribution channel through its various distribution centres in the country (Nguyen 2011). In addition, the products have been availed to customers through online marketing where consumers can make orders and the products are delivered for free. The organization has used various advertising strategies such as use of global television networks, social media and online marketing among other strategies. The organization also ensures the flow of its strategies by placing short term objectives and the success of the strategies is evaluated frequently based on the achieved objectives.
Marketing Tactics for Ipad
In the SOSTAC marketing plan tactics enable the organization evaluate the specific means through which the organization will achieve its objectives. These include the specific actions and programs, which will facilitate achievement of the set marketing objectives. This marketing plan includes the use of media and the specific media tactics used in the marketing of Ipad include business magazines and international television networks. However, based on the target market the organization mainly adopts the electronic media and the internet such as the use of social media (Rahman 2011). For example, the social media such as twitter, Facebook, Myspace and YouTube among others contribute significantly to the marketing and sale of the product. Majority of the targeted customers between the age of 15 years and 35 years is more captured through the use of online marketing and social media being the most used tactic.
Ipad Marketing Plan of Actions
The action plan adopted by apple involved integration of the develop core marketing message for Ipad and strengthening of the brand identity in the market. The organization acknowledges the importance of ensuring the value of the customers is upheld, by ensuring delivery of quality product in a timely manner. Identification of the target customers was also an imperative action that could guide the plan of the overall plan of action such as the media to be used. The firm has also developed a pricing mechanism through classification of the products and ensuring broad products hence broad pricing strategies (Nguyen 2011). The overall plan illustrates the business model that will be adopted by the organization in developing a marketing plan that achieves a competitive advantage for the organization.
Establishing control factors in the marketing plan is an imperative process in ensuring the organization achievement of its objectives. Controls can be established through developing a marketing budget, which will enable Apple to put quantitative measures of the actual performance of the primary goal. Marketing budget enable the organization to establish and determine the return on investments on executing the marketing plan. The marketing budget will also enable Apple determine various specific budget line items such as sales and the various related marketing expenses. In addition, the marketing budget plays an essential role in the process of making decisions as it allows the best decision to be made (Marketing Minds 2012). It also enables the organization to curb excessive expenditures on the marketing since they are forced to work within the specified budgets.
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