Marketing Strategy and Development in the UAE

Introduction

The increasing competition in the marketing environment has triggered various innovations from managers and leaders of organizations. Companies’ innovation shifts in modern times are outcomes of the game that compelled some firms to exit the market prematurely. Smart managers are gradually adopting new strategies that incorporate all the components of the marketing mix and creatively implement them in their marketing strategy with the intention of achieving organizational success goals. Notably, organizations engage in research and assess the behavior of consumers in relation to their purchasing power and buying behavior. Moreover, these organizations examine consumer tastes and preferences. By engaging in research with the aim of understanding consumers, innovative enterprises learn to adopt a strategy that combines quality with the price so that they can match quality and value for client money. The purpose of this study is to discuss the importance of innovation in the UAE using stages of consumer buying decision behavior, product classification, as well as micro and macro environmental factors.

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Discussion

Overview

In the UAE, consumers demonstrate a dynamic character, which compels organizations to improve the level of innovation. Several consumers in the region focus on the quality of a product and relate it to the price attached to it. Therefore, the study looks into the factors that dictate the decision of consumers, the types of products present in the UAE market, as well as the various factors that characterize the marketing environment in the UAE region. The product that the study selects is smartphones. Presently smartphones are among the leading products purchased in the UAE. Consumers of mobile products follow the design outlined by the marketing concepts when making a buying decision and choosing a preferred gadget.

Stages of Consumer Buying Decision Behaviour

When making a decision consumers go through various stages that help them make a choice between the various products. The stages comprise problem identification, search for information, evaluation of alternatives and substitutes, purchase decision, the actual purchase, and post-purchase experience. The stages are crucial for organizations that sell smartphones in the UAE because they help them devise strategies that can improve the consumer base and revenues. Moreover, they help the organizations understand the existing gaps that need redress in order to match client expectations with finished products. Pride and Ferrell (2017) assert that failure to match finished products with consumer expectations is an ingredient that leads to a premature end of a product’s life cycle. Therefore, a comprehensive understanding of client decision-making process is fundamental for Smartphone companies in the UAE.

Problem Identification and Search for Information

To make a purchase a client should identify a problem, which requires a solution. Notably, the problem may be an outcome of observation where the person looks at the comfort brought about by a product that their friends have, or from smart managers who create problems and use them as opportunities. In the Smartphone industry, for instance, manufacturers decided to develop superb devices that have high internet connectivity and speed, a phenomenon that compelled consumers to do away with their old phones and purchase the smartphones. Therefore, the decision to purchase can be triggered by observation or by smart managers (Tavana 2014). Although there are other cases that can trigger a purchase, creation of problems by smart managers and observation are the best examples that fit Smartphone industry. The perfect suitability of the causes occasions because smartphones are specialty consumer products.

After realizing that they need to fill an existing gap and address a problem, consumers then commence a search for information relating to the desired product. The product in question will be one that best serves the need and solves the problem. According to Pride and Ferrell (2017) in the Smartphone industry, clients usually look for a product that has the required speeds and internet connectivity. Moreover, the consumers also look for additional features that can increase the value and quality from a list of competing brands. In the second stage, clients look for the extensive amount of information and strive to understand the various models and brands that are in the UAE market. Furthermore, clients ascertain whether the product actually addresses the problem in question.

Some of the areas that the consumers may visit when searching for information include Google, Amazon, and reviews from past users. Friends, relatives, and colleagues play an instrumental role in the second stage because they can provide the much-needed information concerning the product. Tavana (2014) outlines the fact that one of the factors that distinguish consumers from the UAE region from others in western countries is the fact that they use online platforms to make a choice and then finalize their purchases in retail stores. The factor is unlike their counterparts from the west who undertake their purchase operations in the online platforms and wait for the respective companies to deliver the products.

Evaluation of Alternatives and Purchase Decision

After searching for information concerning the selected product, the individual then makes a choice of a specific brand or model and starts looking for various available similar or substitute products. The focus of the client at this stage is on the minor similarities and additions that make the phones distinct from others in the market. Pride and Ferrell (2017) assert that at the evaluation stage in the decision-making process, organizations selling smartphones need to ensure that their customer care services are smart and that the distribution channels are working in an effective manner. In this stage of evaluation, several organizations fail to attract clients because of bureaucratic and dysfunctional channels and marketing strategies.

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However, smart organizations ensure that the systems are superb and eventually persuade the clients to purchase from one of its stores. Moreover, another important aspect that plays a crucial role in the stage is differentiation. In the perspective of Tavana (2014) by differentiating their products, organizations give clients the chance to make a decision that they feel is right and suitable. It is important to note that even though the consumers are sure about the kind of product that they intent to purchase, they will still make comparisons with the hope of getting a better Smartphone.

The decision to make a purchase comes in after an extensive search of information and evaluation of substitutes and similar products. When the client is sure that the product is the one that fits the desired need, they make a decision to purchase the product. It is important to note that at the stage, a client is sure about the product and can only take in additional information to substantiate their assertions. Fundamentally, in the stage, clients decide to walk out of the store or purchase the Smartphone. Pride and Ferrell (2017) explain that while the consumer will have much information concerning the product, supporting components such as service provision, care, and after sales services play a vital role in helping them make informed decisions. Furthermore, the service providers can explain to the relevance of the product in solving their need with the intention of heightening demand for the Smartphone.

Purchase and Post Purchase Experience

The actual purchase of the product usually succeeds the decision to purchase. When the consumers have acquired all the necessary information and are certain that the Smartphone is the one that they need, they settle and make a purchase. While some organizations may believe that the stage does not require much promotion and marketing, the notion is misplaced because consumers can still walk away and fail to buy the product. In effect, the distribution channel and the availability of the product can determine a purchase. For instance, if the product is far from the client, their willingness to purchase the respective product diminishes. In the UAE, consumers do their search and evaluation using the online platforms and make the actual purchases in retail stores close to the neighborhoods. Therefore, the absence of a Smartphone of their choice in stores close to them can influence their decision to purchase. If a product is not close to their neighborhood, their willingness to purchase decreases irrespective of their love for the brand and model of the Smartphone initially targeted for a purchase.

After buying the product, the client begins the process of testing the Smartphone to assess whether it meets their needs and solves the problem. Satisfied clients will always make return visits and undertake word of mouth marketing to promote the store and products to their colleagues, relatives, and friends. The return visits can improve if the organizations selling the products engage in follow-ups and congratulation email that acknowledge the purchase made by the client. Follow ups will create a positive feeling in the mind of the client and increase the chances of return purchase and word of mouth marketing. In rare instances, some consumers can return and launch a complaint regarding the product. Smart organizations will always examine the cause of the dissatisfaction and address it in a manner that satisfies the client and does strain their operational budget. Remarkably, good follow-ups and congratulatory messages go a long way in augmenting the much-desired client loyalty.

Summary

A decision to purchase a product is a process that entails about six stages. Unlike the thought that a number of uninformed managers have that a decision to purchase a product is impulsive, the decision is indeed a long process that incorporates several stages. Notably, service providers have the capacity to influence the decision at every stage of the decision-making process. In the UAE, clients take their time to understand a product and choose the ones that suit their demands. It is fundamental to explain that organizations supplying smartphones need to market their products in a manner that resonates well with their cultural and religious orientations. According to Lamb (2017), failure to respect the societal, religious, and cultural values of a target population is an ingredient that increases the chances of failure in the market. Since the UAE is a region characterized by Islamic laws and provisions, adherence to a marketing strategy that respects the orientation increases the ability to influence the decision-making process of the clients in the region. By understanding the clients and their decision-making process, Smartphone companies can create successfully market their products in the region.

Product Classification

To understand the importance of Smartphone business in the UAE comprehensively, it is essential to explain the role that product classification plays. Apparently, in the UAE, marketers understand that an enhanced understanding of product classification is one of the steps towards better sales and high revenues. According to Mcdonald and Meldrum (2013), products follow a classification model that categorizes them in classes that relate to the intention of purchase such as business or consumption. The fact that smartphones fall under the category of consumer products because they are purchased by end users, implies that the focus of the study is in consumer products. The main categories of consumer products comprise convenience, specialty, shopping, and unsought goods. By understanding the category of every product, marketers in the UAE region segment themselves in a manner that is strategic to their target clients.

Convenience and Specialty Products

Convenience products usually require a short time to make a purchase. Once individuals have their desired brand, the process of decision-making becomes swift. The swift nature that characterizes the decision-making process of the client when purchasing convenience products emanates from the frequent use of the products. Lamb (2017) asserts that products like toothpaste, groceries, candy, and soft drinks fall under the category of convenience goods. Marketers understand that availability of these products in areas that have potential clients is crucial in increasing sales and sustaining loyalty. The importance of ensuring that the products are available transpires because if a product is absent during the time of need, consumers can switch easily and purchase substitute or similar products from competitors.

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On the other hand, specialty products are unlike convenience goods in several aspects. Primarily these products require a lot of time before a final decision to purchase. Consumers take their time to search for information, compare the products with others in the market, and assess the features of the selected product. High-end products such as new vehicles, smartphones, and sophisticated trending clothes are among specialty products (Mcdonald & Meldrum 2013). It is fundamental to outline the fact that while cars fall under the category of specialty products, used ones are in the category of shopping products.

Shopping and Unsought Products

Consequently, shopping products are those that do not require lots of time before clients make a decision. Used vehicles, appliances, and clothes are in the category of shopping products. Smart managers need to understand that when buying these products, consumers use pricing, the scale of service delivery, and care accorded by salespeople to make their choice. Therefore, expertise in marketing is vital in ensuring that clients purchase the products and become loyal. As the name denotes, unsought goods are those products that do not always receive an influx of clients. Lamb (2017) states that the reduced influx of clients takes effect because they are not as essential as the other consumer products. Accident insurance, disability insurance, and Life insurance are among products that are in the class of unsought goods.

Micro and Macro Environmental Factors

Marketing environment is a composition of micro and macro environment. The environment has factors that are either within the control of a company or out of its control. The factors in the microenvironment are within the control of a particular company, an implication that the respective company can manipulate the factors in line with its requirements. On the other hand, the elements in the macro environment are out of control and companies cannot manipulate them to their advantage. The implication of their out of control nature is the fact that companies can only adjust on time and prepare for uncertainties presented by the macro environmental factors. Therefore, it is fundamental for companies selling smartphones in the UAE to have a comprehensive understanding of the factors that dictate the micro and macro environment. The understanding helps them provide goods that satisfy consumers in relation to the expected quality and quantity. Moreover, with a good understanding, these companies position themselves in a way that minimizes the risk posed by uncertainties in the macro environment.

The Effect of Micro and Macro Environmental Factors on Smartphones in the UAE

Smartphone industry in the UAE region is vulnerable to the impact occasioned by micro environmental factors. Just like other companies in the region, Smartphone companies need to ensure that the forces, which dictate the microenvironment, are in check and efficient. Supply, marketing, distribution, as well as research and development need to coordinate and work together so that the final product matches consumer requirements. Campbell (2015) claim that by being under the company’s control, micro environmental forces should be monitored so that they lead to an eventuality of client satisfaction. The relevance of the micro environmental factors amplifies because smartphones are a specialty consumer product that calls for a lot of research from potential clients. As such, a slight change or delay in Smartphone supply or poor coordination can trigger pronounced changes in consumer willingness to purchase. The distributors need to make sure that the product is in the required points of sale on time, while the producers need to deliver the required quantity of smartphones as per the request advanced by the marketing and supply departments.

Consequently, macro environmental factors dictate the larger marketing environment. Demography, culture, economy, natural calamities, technology, and country politics are the macro environmental factors that affect the operations of Smartphone industries in the UAE. Managers and companies selling smartphones in the region need to be vigilant and always study the environment so that they can make the right decisions on the products to market and sell. With a good understanding of these factors, Smartphone companies in the UAE can successful segment and align their products in a way that enhances client reception and revenues. Alignment implies the act of ensuring that the products match consumer expectation in relation to their culture, religion, ethical values, and lifestyles (Burkhalter & Wood 2015). Therefore, Smartphone companies need to ensure that their products resonate well with the prevailing market expectations. It is notable to highlight the fact that although the factors in the macro environment are out of company’s control, the companies can watch the trends and adjust on time.

Conclusion

Smartphones in the UAE are among the leading consumer products purchased by individuals in the region. The supply of the product has risen and scholars project an increase in its use overtime. Therefore, it is essential to understand the various dynamics that dictate the behavior demonstrated by potential Smartphone consumers in the region. Remarkably, a good marketing mix and strategy helps organizations succeed in their business ventures. To successfully understand consumer behavior and position themselves strategically, Smartphone companies in the UAE need to look at the various factors, which affect consumer behavior. These factors include consumer buying decision behavior, product classification, as well as the micro and macro environmental factors that have a direct impact on Smartphone market in the UAE.

Reference List

Burkhalter, J & Wood, N 2015, Maximizing commerce and marketing, Business Science Reference, Hershey.

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Campbell, C 2015, Marketing in transition: scarcity, globalism, & sustainability: proceedings of the 2009 World Marketing Congress, Springer, London.

Lamb, C 2017, Mktg printed access card, Cengage Learning Custom, New York.

Mcdonald, M & Meldrum, M 2013, The complete marketer: 60 essential concepts for marketing excellence, Kogan Page Limited, London.

Pride, W & Ferrell, O 2017, Foundations of marketing, Cengage Learning, Stamford.

Tavana, M 2014, Analytical approaches to strategic decision-making: interdisciplinary considerations, Business Science Reference, Hershey.

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