Apple Computer, Inc. Research Paper

Introduction

In today’s highly competitive world, where consumerism and globalization are increasing day by day, Apple Computer, Inc. has advanced on a large scale in the field of technology such as computers, Ipods, Ipads, phones, and computers software and hardware accessories, etc.

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Apple is an American computer technology company and has expanded the retail outlets of its products all over the world and earns over $10 billion from its sales.

Corporate and Marketing Strategy

Apple strives for long-term profitable relationships with its customers. Marketing is all about customer relationship management. In return, the company captures value from the customers. Marketing is also managing the profitable customer relationships. Marketing includes advertising, positioning, product design, and product development etc.

In today’s world companies are focusing on the minor needs of the people. Companies now have strategic plans, which help them cater to the needs of the consumers better. Organizations also consider the internal and external environment of the people such as demographics, psychographics, technological, cultural, and natural, competitors, marketing intermediaries, and etc. Apple Corporation does the same by focusing on the needs of a certain market segment and target market.

Apple has been an extremely successful company since 1976 because it has a clear and very accurate mission statement, (which is a statement about the goals and objectives of the organization and what it wants to achieve or accomplish.) Moreover, the company has made extensive efforts in its strategic planning. Strategic planning requires that an organization chalks out a distinctive mission statement, then accordingly sets objectives and goals, follows it up with a detailed business plan.

Apple has a market-oriented mission statement through which it not only sells the products to the consumers but it also gives value and customer satisfaction to them. Apple has concentrated extensive efforts in making sure that its mission is motivating, that is, should not focus only on high sales and profits instead it should be designed in such a way that it contributes to the betterment of the people. For example Wal-Mart’s mission statement is to ensure that every individual is able to buy things at low costs, which is obviously beneficial to its customers.

Furthermore, after evaluating and analyzing the growth and success of Apple, we also found out that the company has a customer-centered marketing strategy, through which it has found the exact target market and market segment that it wants to cater to. A market segment is created by grouping all consumers with specific characteristics together, the criteria can be anything from demographic to geographic etc. this enables organizations to better focus on the needs of each segment that it wants to cater to (the segments which the company wants to cater to is called the target market). After completely evaluating the target market and market segment, Apple went ahead with positioning its products in the markets. Market positioning is basically arranging for a product to occupy a clear, distinctive, and desirable place relative to competing products in the minds of target consumers.

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Customers and R&D

Therefore, Apple Computers, Inc is a company, which knows where it wants to reach in the long run and has a clear and distinctive mission statement as well as objectives. It has an extremely efficient and up-to-date marketing strategy due to which it has been targeting millions of consumers all over the world. Apple does not only provide products to its customers, but also gives them customer satisfaction and value.

Apple has been so successful since 1976 because it has maintained an excellent standard of quality and keeps improving it day by day through investments in its research and development sector. Apple has come up with the most innovative and creative ideas of technology in the recent years due to making great efforts in the R&D sector. For example, the development of iPod has been very successful in the digital music player market. Music lovers all over the world had gone crazy with the advent of the iPod and Apple has made very large sales and profits. Therefore, innovation and creativity in the development of new technology is the main reason behind the enormous success of Apple Computers, Inc. Moreover, Apple aims to please its loyal customers beyond their dreams or desires. Hence, a company that aims and works for the happiness and contentment of its customers can never fail from succeeding and from gaining the highest market share and reputation/image.

Competitors

Most importantly, Apple Corporation has been very effective and efficient in dealing with its competitors by adopting the marketing concept that to be successful, a company must strive to give the highest level of satisfaction to its consumers. That is, Apple must do more than just adapting to the needs of the target consumers. Thus, Apple’s aim should be able to position its products in the minds of the consumers in such a way that the consumers are encouraged or forced to choose Apple products as compared to the competitors.

Apple has been so successful in tackling and dealing with its competitors because it has understood that it is essential to understand that no single competitive marketing strategy is best for all companies. That is, each firm should consider its own size and industry position compared with those of its competitors.

After adopting this strategy for competitors, Apple has been able to deal with other computer and technology manufacturers such as IBM, Acer and Compaq, etc.

Market Research

Apple has also worked hard in the area of marketing research for its products. Marketing research is basically the systematic design, collection, analysis, and reporting of data relevant to a specific marketing situation facing an organization. Marketing research is of great importance because it can help organizations understand customer satisfaction and purchase behavior. Moreover, it can help them assess market potential and market share, or to measure the effectiveness of pricing, product, distribution, and promotion activities.

Marketing strategies play the most important role for a product from the start. It is a game plan by the company to achieve its goals and objectives. Therefore, it is essential to do market research to formulate the most effective marketing strategies. A market strategy should be customer-centered. The company aims to win customers from their competitors and maintains the company’s name by catering to the customers with superior value each time. For this Apple should carefully understand the basic needs and wants of the consumers. Companies cannot cater to all the consumers, as all the consumers do not have similar needs and want. Therefore a company divides the total market into segments, chooses the best segment and designs strategies for these consumers in order to earn profits.

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Market research shows consumer-buying behavior and that shows that consumers purchase those products which have unique and distinctive features as compared to other products available in the market. Apple has been so successful in accomplishing its goals and objectives because it differentiates its product from that of the competitor’s by identifying the unique features of a product that are important to the customer. The company has always positioned its product in the minds of the consumers in such a way that they are forced to buy them.

Apple has also made major contributions in the aspect of developing its marketing mix elements, which are namely product, price, place and promotion. Apple works hard in making sure that it produces the best quality and the most innovative products as compared to its competitors and after the development of its products, Apple sets the most reasonable and competitive price for its product which not only appeals to the consumers but also gives them satisfaction and value. The company also covers the placing element of the marketing mix extensively and Apple products are easily available all over the world.

Lastly, the process by which the company narrates the advantages and benefits of the product in order to persuade its target customers to do purchases is promotion. Promotions can be done by advertising, sales promotion, publicity, direct marketing, personal selling. Most promotion is done through televisions, radios, newspapers, magazines and billboards. On television, the advertisements should have catchy jingles so that they break the clutter within no time. The message strategies should be very effective. The company also sets its promotion budget according to its profits and sales. The promotion strategies of Apple change according to the life-cycle stage of the product. The new product needs heavy promotions while the product at the maturity stage does not require heavy promotions. Promotions of Apple are so convincing and tempting that they encourage customers to switch their brands and adopt Apple products instead. Another important fact to notice is that Apple also sells and promotes its products all over the world through e-business.

Conclusion

In the end, we conclude that Apple Computers, Inc is a successful organization because it has a well sought out marketing plan for the sale of its products all over the world. Apple understands the importance of the marketing mix elements, marketing strategies and research and development and therefore, makes extensive efforts in these areas. Moreover, Apple is a competitive firm, as it knows how to deal with its competitors by producing better and more innovative products as compared to its competitors. And the company also gives more value and satisfaction to its customers through its promotion and pricing strategies and also through customer relationship management. Apple knows the importance of consumers and aims to provide the maximum contentment to them.

Works Cited

Ahmad.J and Mark M.H. (2001) Consumers and brands: a study of the impact of self-image congruence on brand preference and satisfaction. Marketing Intelligence & Planning.pp.482 – 492

Hsu &Tsuen.H (2000) Gaining a Competitive Advantage Through the Refinement of Measuring Consumer Involvement.pp1-10

Ibrahim, Hafedh, Najjar, Faouzi (2007).A multi-dimensional approach to analyzing the effect of self congruity on shopper’s retail store behavior, Journal of Marketing.pp 34-56

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Kevin,K.& Kotler,P., 2008, Marketing Management. (13th Ed). Prentice Hall.

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