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Marketing is something that we do to let people know what products we have to offer. Selling is something that we do to show people that the products we have to offer are of value to them. In the high tech world of today, much of what we consider marketing is very inconspicuous. Messages are moving at the speed of light, and we are hardly even aware of what we saw or heard that ever made us think eating fast food meant getting good food fast!
Marketing is all around us - from the letters that appear in our mind when our stomach hurts. Yes, we know what spells relief to the jingle in our head when we think of the first and second name we give the meat in our sandwich. We have all done it, ran into the store to buy something, and called it out by the brand...not by the actual product name.
When was the last time you were thinking of something, as simple as coffee, and "Starbucks" appeared in your mind? This, my friend, is what they call "savvy marketing" and it's as old as the day is long. The reason that marketing has been around for so long, is that for some odd reason, the more we keep something in the forefront of our mind, the more we inquire, the more we "Google" it, and the more we buy it - it is why we think that we're wearing Levi's instead of jeans.
Marketing is what people do to get us interested in the "brand" of their product. Marketing is what causes us to dream and imagine and wish. When someone markets a product or service to us, they are helping us to get more familiar with it. They are asking us to be really comfortable with hearing the brand, saying the brand, asking about the brand and eventually, leading us to a place where we find a NEED for just that brand.
Marketing is the first step to a long-term relationship with any product, and the more product a person has to sell - the longer we may find ourselves involved in the relationship.
Marketing is the most thought out component of any large selling campaign, because without this one step - the marketing - no-one knows that we're even there.
The idea that once they know us and we know them (which seems like forever) is when we are able to like what we hear and trust what they have.
Selling usually comes in right about here...the point of purchase. This is where we are helped to find the best solution for us. Selling is fine tuning the brand / product / service to fit our needs exclusively, and this is where some people start to shy away. Selling isn't always up close, but it IS personal. Selling, if done correctly, can create a lifetime of loyal product / service users, and should always be done with the utmost respect, trust and honor. Selling is what helps a consumer to decide if this product that has been marketed to them is really what they need AND if the pain they have is strong enough to get rid of, or if the pleasure is great enough to invest.
Selling is the next step to that wonderful place called referrals, and that can't happen if we haven't been able to deliver what we marketed our product to do. Our job when we market our product or service is to create for our client a reason to want to begin a relationship with us. They need to know. just by the sound of our brand, that we are worth pursuing. Not only do they need to be comfortable with what we are sharing, they also need to know that over and over again until they believe it for themselves.
So, as we look at the way we are creating relationships with our future clients, look at the process in having them trust us. If we are skipping step one in relationship building (the marketing) then step two (selling), will be much more difficult - and step three (referrals & word of mouth) is then almost impossible.
We may have the greatest product out on the market today, and it may very well be the one thing that solves all of the world's problems, BUT, if we haven't figured out how to speak to people in a caring and comfortable way, they will never get the chance to know us, and people who don't know us will not buy from us!
Marketing is relevant to growth provided it is viewed as total business effort. Further we can view marketing effort in tow different ways - the firm and state. In developing countries like Pakistan significance of marketing is vital in terms of promotion of exports of the country and hence resulted in attracting foreign exchange.
Answer No. 2 MARKETING STRATEGY
Ufone is the second largest GSM network in Pakistan.
Ufone Marketing strategy at time of its launch was to offer low rates compared to Mobilink and to portrayed its product with following caption:
"Its all about U".
This also made people realize that Ufone is more caring.
Ufone provide its coverage in bigger cities first(like all networks) to capture big share of market. Although its low coverage and signal problems kept it below Mobilink and also got it below telenor(only once). Ufone was Pakistan's first GPRS Provider and always managed to get its share more than all others(except Mobilink).
Ufone is now here with new Marketing strategy. Pakistani Market which was once driven by "Low Rates" is now more interested in "Value Added Services" because GSM networks already offered the lowest possible call rates and now their rates are very much alike, Like Ufone's WON, Mobilink's Jazz one, Telenor's A1 etc.
So, Ufone decided to excel in new wave of marketing which is "Value Added Services" and made first moves in introducing "Call Blocking", "Push to Talk", "Song Catcher" in Pakistan. Ufone is also planning to introduce "Blackberry on Prepaid". Attractive SMS and Voice packages for young ones and adults are always there along with Promotions like free minutes, free credit etc keeping up its attraction for everyone.
As of September 2008, Ufone's customer base is 18.80 million customers.
And close rival telenor's customer base is 18.47 million customers.
An important part of marketing planning is identifying key strategic decisions that will give the firm a competitive advantage in the marketplace and achieve stated objectives. Strategy selection begins with several assumptions that marketers must make about the market. In this case of our tableware marketers, an assumption can be made that the targeted consumer segment does value high quality in expensive tableware, but the best way to communicate and demonstrate value in this product category is through appropriate distribution methods. These assumptions determine the relative emphasis given to each of the marketing mix elements and lead to the next stage of the planning process. Product quality and selective distribution will be the focus in our example.
To develop specific action plans or tactics, each element of the marketing strategy must be dissected. Here, marketers specify tactics for each aspect of the marketing mix.
Simply using different combinations of these mix variables makes a dramatic difference in marketing action programs. We take an example of a company which stresses product manufacturing design and selective distribution. It could just as easily focus on discount pricing and mass advertising. The goal is to design a marketing mix that will appeal to the target market and prove profitable, given the limitations imposed by the available resources and requirements of the marketing strategy.
Answer No. 5 PRODUCT LIFE CYCLE
Product life cycle (PLC)
Like human beings, products also have their own life-cycle. From birth to death human beings pass through various stages e.g. birth, growth, maturity, decline and death. A similar life-cycle is seen in the case of products. The product life cycle goes through multiple phases, involves many professional disciplines, and requires many skills, tools and processes. Product life cycle (PLC) has to do with the life of a product in the market with respect to business/commercial costs and sales measures. To say that a product has a life cycle is to assert four things:
that products have a limited life,
product sales pass through distinct stages, each posing different challenges, opportunities, and problems to the seller,
profits rise and fall at different stages of product life cycle, and
products require different marketing, financial, manufacturing, purchasing, and human resource strategies in each life cycle stage.
There are six stages in a product's life cycle. here four of them:
1. Market introduction stage
costs are high
slow sales volumes to start
little or no competition
demand has to be created
customers have to be prompted to try the product
makes no money at this stage
2. Growth stage
costs reduced due to economies of scale
sales volume increases significantly
profitability begins to rise
public awareness increases
competition begins to increase with a few new players in establishing market
increased competition leads to price decreases
3. Maturity stage
costs are lowered as a result of production volumes increasing and experience curve effects
sales volume peaks and market saturation is reached
increase in competitors entering the market
prices tend to drop due to the proliferation of competing products
brand differentiation and feature diversification is emphasized to maintain or increase market share
Industrial profits go down
4. Saturation and decline stage
costs become counter-optimal
sales volume decline or stabilize
prices, profitability diminish
profit becomes more a challenge of production/distribution efficiency than increased sales
Marketing Mix: You may have heard of the "four Ps" of marketing: product, price, place, and promotion. Collectively these are called the marketing mix. More comprehensively they are viewed as:
product, service, or program - something of value you are offering the customer, client, or park visitor
price - what the customer, client, or park visitor pays (direct costs are financial, indirect or alternative costs are such things as time it takes and the things people give up if they choose your offering)
place, distribution, location, or accessibility - where the transaction takes place, perhaps in a park
promotion or communication - this is how you inform the target market about the benefits in your marketing mix
Collectively these are the tools organizations uses to develop offerings to satisfy their target market(s) ... the only tools at their disposal. Remember: If your marketing mix doesn't meet their needs they will not be satisfied - and if they aren't satisfied you are unlikely to meet your objectives.
The marketing mix should be viewed as an integrated and coordinated package of benefits that reflect the characteristics of customers and various targeted publics and satisfy their needs, wants, and expectations. Note that the elements of the marketing mix should be integrated because each element of the mix usually has some impact, direct or indirect, on the other three. For example, if you improve the product or service you probably have to change the price because it costs more to produce. Although you may not have to change where the product is delivered to the customer, you will almost certainly have to change the promotion or communication with the customer because you need to tell the customer about the changes you have made in the product and how the changes will make it more desirable and satisfying.
One problem in many organizations is that different divisions may be responsible for different elements of the marketing mix. This happens even in well managed organizations. The result is that the offering is confusing to the target market. Lack of communication among divisions makes this problem worse. And if they don't share the same view of organizational objectives, the problem is worse still.
Product: The product, service, or program includes both tangible and intangible elements. The tangible, of course, are those things that the customer can see, touch, feel, taste, or smell. The intangible include such things as the image of the offering ... which includes the image of the organization making the offering, the psychological aspects of pricing (high price to many customers is equated with high quality - and vice versa).
Price: The price is what the customer pays. It includes direct and indirect costs as well as opportunity costs. The benefits of the product have to be great enough to warrant the price. Price includes all costs associated with the product, service, or program.
Place: The place is where the customer receives the product, service, or program. The place of delivery, including all of its resources, is part of what the consumer buys. A place that meets his or her needs better may be worth more. The place may be a park, a visitor center in the park, or an interpretive exhibit along a trail. In setting its strategy, the organization must determine how much the target market is willing to pay for atmosphere and physical resources of place.
Promotion:Promotion includes all forms of communication you use to communicate the benefits of your offering to the target market(s). The objective is to persuade the customer in such a way that he or she recognizes that your offering is uniquely qualified to meet his or her needs. The term promotion mix is commonly used to refer to the types of communication that are available: advertising, public relations, personal selling, publicity, and sales promotion. Some authors include direct marketing. Word of mouth, though seldom discussed, is powerful promotion