Along with innovations, the formation of the market infrastructure, the modernization of the material and technical base, the development of small businesses to solve it, it is necessary to learn how to work effectively with partners in the market. Moreover, businesses need to assume how to interact with customers, understand and identify their preferences and needs. This is mainly due to the fact that in the modern economy, the question of whom to sell the goods to is more acute, and not how to produce it. It is essential to create new products, form new ways of selling, and understand buyers’ psychology. In this regard, the problem of creating an effective sales promotion program is of particular relevance.
Effective sales management, which allows ensuring close the interaction of the manufacturer and the buyer of products, is essential not only for making a profit but also for the effective use of production capacities, rationalization of the enterprise’s organizational structure, management, marketing, strategic planning, resource support, and logistics. It is also of fundamental importance for ensuring financial stability and the successful implementation of its competitive strategy. This does not mean that product sales management is a crucial function; nevertheless, its interrelations in the production and economic system of the enterprise are crucial for its successful operation.
Manufacturers need to systematically solve many tasks in an unstable market environment, determined by diverse phenomena and processes, including sanctions. First of all, they are related to the search for new techniques and technologies for conducting marketing research, strengthening and expanding market positions, finding new consumers and securing regular customers, optimizing the product range, developing product distribution channels. One of the effective tools for the system solution of these tasks is a product sales promotion program that reflects the priorities, opportunities, and specifics of the manufacturer’s sales solutions in a particular market. Therefore, the problems associated with the development of sales management through the development and implementation of program activities are among the most relevant and significant for achieving the market success of enterprises. This is especially important for companies represented in the technology sector.
Today, Apple is a leading manufacturer of mobile phones, software, iPods, and tablets. The history of Apple is undoubtedly connected with Steve Jobs. Today, the equipment produced in the corporation is highly valued for its impeccable quality. Currently, the total value of the corporation is estimated at over 500 billion US dollars (Beattie, 2020). The company carefully monitors trends in IT technologies and implements them in the production process.
In the process of developing the company, it experienced both successes and severe failures. Today, to manage such a giant, its own corporate culture has been specially developed. Before starting to create new models of devices, the management prescribes the duties and roles of each employee. Any product of the company is developed in an atmosphere of strict secrecy. The company also has its own sales concept. It clearly describes how to design stores. For managers and sellers, the principles of trading equipment and psychological techniques used on buyers are compiled.
This report consists of the rationale, aim and objectives, as well as a review of the literature and methodology of the study.
Rationale for the Study
The relevance of the research topic is based on several facts. When using the market mechanism for regulating the functioning and development of consumer market entities, the level of competition between retail trade organizations for potential buyers of their goods and services sharply increases. In this situation, the most crucial component of their competitive strategy is a sales incentive system aimed at activating buyers’ behavior in places of sale of goods.
The practical significance of the research lies in the fact that based on the proposals, conclusions and recommendations set out in this work, a sales promotion management system can be developed and implemented in any retail trade organization, which is one of the factors of increasing its competitiveness in the consumer market. Having studied the pricing and marketing strategy features, specific tips and examples can be developed for other companies that seek to expand their influence in the market of goods and services.
In the case of Apple products, these conditions can be applied to them, since when releasing new products, the company initially has no competitors since it has technologies that are not available to competitors. As of 2020, the company has received about 6,000 patents, including about 5,000 inventions and 1,000 design projects (Beattie, 2020). In addition, the company has its unique brand with many customers who are ready to buy a new product at any price. Thus, the company gets the maximum profit on the sale of a new product, and then, when demand decreases, it reduces the price of this product or releases an even newer model at the same high price. This sales promotion strategy creates difficulties for competitors. Thus, the primary purpose of this work is to study the attitude of buyers to specific sales promotion strategies. Having mastered this data on the example of Apple, it will be possible to develop the most effective methods of promoting and increasing sales.
Research Aim and Objectives
- The primary purpose of this study is to develop recommendations for improving sales promotion methods for companies engaged in the technology and IT spheres, using the example of Apple. This market is considered as an integral object with its inherent mechanisms of functioning and development.
- to analyze current trends in the development of sales promotion methods as an essential component of trade management;
- to justify the main algorithms and sequential stages of planning measures to stimulate sales in retail trade;
- to analyze the positive and negative reactions of potential buyers to the sales promotion techniques;
- to assess the economic efficiency of activating consumer purchasing behavior using mechanisms of periodic price reduction.
It is necessary to determine the degree of scientific development of the problem. To date, many scientific works in both domestic and foreign literature explore the theoretical and practical aspects of sales promotion in retail trade. However, in this field of science, they are primarily fragmentary and are devoted more to managing individual operations rather than the sales system as a whole. The works in which the issues of sales promotion management are considered to one degree or another are quite numerous. Many aspects of the problem are studied in great detail in the scientific works of such economists and researchers as Wierenga (2020), Chung (2017), Rojuee (2017), Pelsmacker (2020) and others.
First of all, Pelsmacker (2020) determines the role and place of sales promotion in the management system of a trade organization. To do this, the scientist analyzes the importance of sales promotion measures to increase the economic efficiency of trading activities and improve the competitiveness of retail trade organizations in the consumer market. In addition to this study, Fam (2019) presents the results of an express analysis of the main methods of planning sales promotion and shows the results of a study of the subjective perception of the most frequently used methods of sales promotion on the part of consumers.
Alongside, another researcher-economist, Rojuee (2017), considers economic methods of stimulating sales and their effectiveness. Scientist research contains materials related to determining the optimal situational conditions for the practical use of those techniques and methods that motivate buyers to make a purchase based on the incentive of material benefit. On the other hand, Andani and Wahyono (2018) note that the whole set of economic methods of sales promotion is divided into two groups: techniques based on price discounts and techniques associated with obtaining additional material advantages at a constant level of retail prices.
More in-depth research on behavioral and technological approaches to sales promotion is noted in the work of Joseph (2020). The scientist considers the practical possibilities and economic efficiency of using such methods of influencing consumers as situational variants of oral offers, advertising at the point of sale, the use of merchandising techniques to activate consumer purchasing behavior. In addition, there is the book of Wierenga (2017), who notes ways to improve the quality of sellers’ work when stimulating sales by optimizing the system of material incentives for their work. This study is also essential for this work, as it reflects the necessary view from the inside on improving sales technologies.
The above studies show that the frequency of using individual sales promotion topics in the market is relatively stable. However, it can be noted that more attention is paid to such a complex topic as a unique form of sale, where a creative, non-standard approach to solving the problem is most needed. Thus, Wierenga (2017) points out that the terms of sales promotion are the requirements that the product distribution channels, or end users must meet. In the practice of trading, they usually include the minimum purchase volume, the age of the buyer, and special status.
According to several researchers, it is necessary to include newspapers, magazines, television, radio, mailings, group meetings, and personal sales. In addition, Chung (2017) says that when using economic methods of sales promotion, short time intervals are more effective, and for non-economic ones, long and continuous cycles of information impact on potential consumers are more effective. In addition to these studies, Priyanka (2019) determines that joint sales promotion with other stakeholders of the consumer market makes sense only with the vertical integration of their activities.
Several researchers, Priyanka (2019), Kaveh (2020) and Pelsmacker (2020), note that the mechanism of price reduction is most often used for economic sales promotion. A temporary reduction in the price of a product has a number of essential advantages concerning the buyer’s motivation to purchase goods or services. In addition, Rojuee (2017) highlights the main advantages of using this approach. They noted that discounts allow the trade organization to estimate the cost of the operation in advance accurately. Andani and Wahyono (2018) also say that this event could be organized quickly enough and in the simplest forms. Thus, price incentives provide a real opportunity to respond to aggressive actions of competitors quickly.
However, other researchers Wierenga (2017) and Fam (2019) mention that several disadvantages are inherent in price promotion of sales. Thus, Kaveh (2020) notes that this method does not lead to the creation of a system of regular customers since it orients consumers to regularly use the services of only those stores where a price reduction is offered at a given time. Pelsmacker (2020) also determines that a price reduction can lead to losses if a sharp increase in sales does not accompany it. In other studies, Chang (2017), it is noted that if such events are carried out too often throughout the product’s life cycle, the image of the product being sold in the perception of a potential consumer may decrease.
First of all, it is necessary to highlight the instrumental and methodological apparatus of the study. The research uses historical, structural, and functional analysis, the method of scientific extrapolation, methods of unity of historical and logical, generalization of quantitative indicators, hypothesis building, methods of competitive analysis, post-factum testing, financial analysis, the pure modern value of value, as well as tools of tabular and graphical methods of analysis. The information and empirical base of the study are defined in the following paragraphs. The research data’s analytical representativeness and factual reliability are ensured using materials from websites that provide statistical data. The internal reporting of a number of IT industry enterprises for the study period is also used. Moreover, the research results are achieved through the analysis and generalization of data from scientific publications: monographs, scientific journals of domestic and foreign authors, analytical reviews on these aspects within the framework of the studied issues.
However, the primary research tool is the interviewing method. The use of this method in the framework of the work is since there is a need to determine the attitude of buyers to various methods of sales promotion (Wierenga, 2017). It is impossible to obtain data on the opinion of consumers without their direct participation. As part of this study, a Standardized Interview will be used. It provides for surveying according to a developed scheme, the same for all respondents. The interviewer is not allowed to change the wording or order of questions, as well as to ask new questions. All the conditions of the procedure are regulated. As a result, a high degree of comparability of all individual results is ensured, the number of errors in the formulation of questions is reduced to a minimum, and the reliability of the survey results is increased. All this becomes particularly important in cases where it is necessary to interview many people using statistical tools for processing information.
As part of the study, about 1000 people of different genders and ages will be interviewed. The questions will be of a closed type with the possibility of answering “yes”, “no”, “not sure”. Questions will be asked about various techniques of stimulating prices, so the personal attitude of buyers to specific methods will be evaluated. Depending on the answer, points from 2, 0, and 1 will be assigned to each sales promotion method, respectively. Thus, the most preferred solutions for stimulating prices will be identified, to which buyers are most loyal.
Time and Budget Plan
Various Internet resources and forums will be used for conducting interviews. Also, it will be necessary to draw up a questionnaire, which will contain questions. Thus, it will take no more than one day to prepare. The interview will be conducted in a remote format. Therefore, there is no need to hire interviewers. Thus, the budget will be needed only for conducting small online advertising, which will not be spent more than 10 US dollars. The time frame of the survey itself will take no more than a week.
Andani, K. and Wahyono, W. (2018) “Influence of sales promotion, hedonic shopping motivation and fashion involvement toward impulse buying through a positive emotion.”, Management Analysis Journal, 7(4), pp. 448-457. DOI: 10.15294/maj.v7i4.24105.
Beattie, A. (2020) How did Apple get so big?
Chang, A. (2017) ‘A study on the effects of sales promotion on consumer involvement and purchase intention in tourism industry’, Journal of Mathematics, Science and Technology Education, 13(12), pp. 8323-8330. DOI: 10.12973/ejmste/77903.
Fam, K. (2019), “Consumer attitude towards sales promotion techniques: a multi-country study”, Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics, 31(2), pp. 437-463. DOI: 10.1108/APJML-01-2018-0005
Joseph, J. (2020) ‘Does loyalty matter? Impact of brand loyalty and sales promotion on brand equity’, Journal of Promotion Management, 26(4), pp. 524-543. DOI: 10.1080/10496491.2020.1719953.
Kaveh, A. (2020) ‘Customer engagement in sales promotion’, Marketing Intelligence and Planning, 39(3), pp. 424-437.
Pelsmacker, P. (2020) ‘Sales Promotion’, in Kitchen, P. (ed.) A Reader in Marketing Communications. London: Routledge, p. 38.
Priyanka, G. (2019) ‘Measures to improve sales promotion effectiveness: The consumer perspective’, The Journal of Management Awareness, 22(1), pp. 54-67. DOI: 10.5958/0974-0945.2019.00005.0.
Rojuee, H. (2017) ‘The impact of advertising and sales promotion methods on brand loyalty through brand equity (Case Study: Chitoz Brand)’, International Journal of Basic Sciences and Applied Research, 6(1), pp. 11-18.
Wierenga, B. (2017) Handbook of marketing decision models. New York: Springer.