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The History And Background Of Sony Marketing Essay

2631 words (11 pages) Essay in Marketing

5/12/16 Marketing Reference this

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Sony is one of the largest game device providers in the world. It started at 1946 in Japan. Initially, Sony was selling the electronic products and electronic devices such as television, home video, home audio, camera and others. In 1994, Sony begins to sell their first gaming console implemented by them which is Playstation (PS) 1. More versions of Playstation such as PS 2 and 3, other similar console, PS portable and PS Vita were released to meet customers’ higher expectations. During the past few years, Sony has put its effort on the innovation of virtual reality headgear. With the influence of movies and animation such as Sword Art Online, the public hope to interact and experience a more realistic graphics in the game. Since there is a demand for this, Sony decides to create this product.

2.0 Current Market Situation

Various technologies have been developed and innovated to simplify daily tasks. One of the most significant effects of development of technology is in the gaming industry. Ever since in the 90’s, companies such as Sony have been developing various gaming consoles that provide better experience to its users with each new design. From the first Playstation, to the soon to be released Playstation 4.

Since the development of mobile gaming such as smartphones and tablets, the demands for gaming consoles has been declining. However, according to DFC Intelligence Analyst, “New console systems from Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony are expected to help the console segment regain some momentum in the 2014 to 2015 timeframe” (Cole D. 2012). It just means that, as long as gaming companies can develop a better console systems, the market will resume its growth. Therefore developing Cita-Vita is essential to place Sony back in the game.

The main competitor for Sony will be the Oculus VR Inc. as they are developing a product similar to Cita-Vita which is the Oculus Rift. The Rift too provides a more realistic gameplay by allowing the user to experience a 360 degree videogame environment. In addition, Adhesive Games had developed a game, Hawken, which is said to be very compatible with Rift’s gameplay. Moreover, while Cita-Vita is still in the researching stage, the Rift developer’s kit had been completed and will be launched anytime soon. And not long after that, the consumer version will too be released.

Even so, the technology used in Cita-Vita is different from The Rift. In addition to the 360 degree game environment experience, this product consists of a new technology that allows the user to ‘play’ without lifting a finger (this technology will be further explained in the product strategies). Gamers will be keen to accept this technology as it is a great improvement from the past consoles and it had only been seen in comics and animations.

3.0 SWOT Analysis

3.1 Strength

After years of researching and developing and at this juncture, Sony becomes the pioneer to concept, implement, and create the world first virtual reality gaming headgear. The product’s objective is to promote intellectual course of events that enable users to experience different ‘life’ and are suitable for anyone due to its intuitive usage. The complexity but extremely exquisite technology, which contains a 4 dimensional sensibility view function by the main core, processor XG1 with 1 THz ,and integrate with a graphic chip to project Ultra High Definition (Ultra HD) ,and the latest cloud gaming system which benefit the firm’s profitability. Sony could be dominant over the price strategy control in the market.

3.2 Weakness

Some aspects that need attention are uncertain incidents that affect the stability of the system operation, the high cost of the parts and technology for the product, and shortage of technical staff for this system. Fatakia K., (2012) stated that the high cost of media production, especially in its television business, has affected the company’s pricing strategy. Frankly, Sony lost about $6.3 billion in the past eight years due to this which lead to lose of market shares to Samsung and LG.

3.3 Opportunities

Sony could penetrate into a new market of gaming consoles in gaming industry for a long term. It is because it is marketed to both novice and expert gamers and is not restricting to the age of individuals. With this technology in hand, Sony would consider having partnership with military, aero industry and space industry to create field or cosmic simulator for teaching and training purposes. Moreover, there would be an evolution in offering a platform for social networking.

3.4 Threat

Several factors that concern Sony regarding the launching of Cita-Vita are the interference of competitors relating to the safety of this product causing consumers to have difficulty to accept. The impact of compliance regulations on health and safety as well as economic condition in different areas would also delay the recognition of the product and to be widely used. Even before, ‘the company’s Playstation network was hacked, resulting in leakage of customer information, such as credit-card data’ (Fatakia, 2012) and Sony was fined for £250,000. Sony needs to enhance securities to protect gamer’s personal details.

4.0 Marketing objective

With the development and production of Cita-Vita, Sony wishes to increase the market share significantly during that period which can be seen through sales. As reported by an author in Seeking Alpha, it is said that the soon to be released PS 4 by Sony will take away the market share from XBOX (Anon 2013). The new product Cita-Vita will be able to take even more shares as PS 4 is just an extension of the existing Playstation models. Sony should opt for a 70% increment for a year. This can be done by increasing the market share and customer value. The increasing in the shares value indicates that the company is having a positive prospect. By giving satisfying customer values, the revenue of the sales will increase which lead to the increase in company’s standings hence, the share price. Other than that, the company’s strategic planning and making decision to set appropriate recourses, business environments, and human resources, like serving customers through suitable staff and retailers, who can deal with customer more efficiently will guarantee higher customer satisfaction.

5.0 Strategies

5.1 Product Strategy

The gaming headgear, Cita-Vita consists of 3 levels which are core benefit, actual product and augmented product.

5.1.1 Core Benefit

Cita-Vita is a product which is specially made to provide virtual reality experience for all users especially gamers. Virtual experience can be says as the stimulation to enable people to interact with the artificial 4-dimensional visual or other sensory environment in games. It provides a 360 degree game environment experience.

5.1.2 Actual Product Product Name

The name of this gaming headgear is Cita-Vita. Cita has a meaning of ‘other’ in Latvian while vita means ‘life’ in Latin. This name represents the second life or another life that users will experience. Features

Cita-Vita comes in two colours which are black and white because these colours are regard as trendy by most people.

The design of the headgear looks like a helmet. It has a single interface which covers the player’s face. This headgear stimulates five main senses of humans with high frequency electromagnetic microwave transmitter. It controls the user’s consciousness by redirecting the signals which the brain sends to the body to the machine itself and replace its own waves to stimulate the senses.

This headgear uses electricity as its main source of power. The charger is plug-in at the socket provided on the left side of the headgear. The headgear also contains its own batteries which acts as a backup.

Headgear also contains the USB port for installation of games and other software. The software or games can be installed by connecting with computer.

Moreover, the headgear contains three indicators which are power (PWR), wide area network (WAN) and BLK. PWR will light up after the charger is plug-in. The other two buttons will also light up after the respective system requirements are fulfilled.

5.1.3 Augmented product

There will be two-year warranty that comes with the product. The warranty covers most damages of the product except damage cause by the carelessness of the buyers such as improper handling of the product.

5.2 Promotion Strategies

Two strategies are applied based on the introduction stage. Sony should use push strategy to promote product through distribution channels to final consumers. First, Sony will provide the product display stands or signs to retailers to create awareness to consumers. Trade deals ‘which are price discounts given for meeting certain purchase requirements’ (Peter, Donnelly, 1997, pg156) are also offered, e.g. 10% off for 1 unit of Cita-Vita only after selling 50 units each time.

For pull strategies, Sony ‘relies on product advertising or consumer sales promotion’ (Peter, Donnelly, 1997, pg157) to build up consumer demand. Sony could organize events to induce consumers to try the product and give out free merchandises such as batteries if purchase is made on the spot. Another way is to use Sony’s website to promote a price deal for pre-orders for limited time.

Sony will use informative advertising, to introduce Cita-Vita to unaware consumers of its purposes, features and brand. Certain people are needed such as expert gamers or renowned individuals to promote the value of the product and develop desire or wants of other potential consumer that are moved by those who believed in the product’s value. Sony may use objective and task method for the promotional budget as Sony has large funds to achieve its promotional results globally. The advertising message of Cita-Vita is to provide ‘life’ experiences. And it is executed with interesting style, format, words and tone. Medias such as television that covers mass audience and game magazines like PC Gamer which draw the reader’s attention and has high demographic and geographic selectivity could be use.

Sony can publicize Cita-Vita and announce its release in press conference. This public relation cost lesser without including fees for time or space and has vigorous impact to the public. Medias would pick up the news and report about them. The public will have more trust in the product as it seems more credible.

5.3 Pricing Strategy

As a new product being launched where competition does not exist, what price should be set for such cases?

It is important to target the right customer and to develop the market growth for the purpose of being viable on the certain product.

As Sony plans to introduce a new device, Sony has to set a base price level that covers the costs of sales while maintaining its reputation which is to provide high quality products. After estimating the amount to be spent on the production of this product and comparing the price of other consoles made by Sony, Sony should set the base price of Cita- Vita as $580. Basing on this, the sales of 7 million units is the break-even point for Cita-Vita where the cost of research and production is covered. As technological product are said to have a low product life cycle, Sony ought to use price skimming strategy. While taking into account psychological matter such as image pricing, higher prices which represent higher quality and odd even pricing will attract people to purchase the device. Thus it is recommended that Sony set a higher price during the first few months which is $699. Price strategies must be amended based on the market in short and long run, to retain sales. In the end, the success of the ideas is directly related to customer satisfaction. When consumers are satisfy with product, price can remain in the higher level.

5.4 Distribution strategy

The last strategy to be discussed is the distribution strategy. This strategy involves looking into certain aspects such as where to make the product available and when to do so (Dibb. S, et al., 2006). There are times Sony is unable to deal with the customer personally due to reasons such as the cost, time and the geographical distribution of the customers. For this reasons, Sony ought to look for certain distribution channels that can help to sell Cita-Vita to more customers.

As this is a new product, Sony is encouraged to start with exclusive distribution. Therefore, Sony should sell Cita-Vita directly via online or through a Sony Centre. Sony could start by allowing pre-orders from customers through their website. By doing so, Sony can then get a clearer picture on the type of customers who are interested and generate feedback from them. At the Sony centers, there will be expert staff that are able to explain the product functions and specifications to customers who are interested. Furthermore, Customers are certain that they can get the original version of Cita-Vita from the centers.

After the feedbacks from the customers have been studied, Sony can then made final adjustments to Cita-Vita and start using other distribution strategies such as selective. Sony can sell the product in bulks to other electronic companies especially gaming centers. These retailers can help Sony to sell the product to a larger group of people all across the world. In addition, gaming centers are not only experts in this category but they as well have connections with a variety of customers and other businesses as well as understand how to deal with them well.

Lastly, Sony could distribute them to internet cafes. Most young gamers go to these cafes to play computer games. By having Cita-Vita there, these young gamers are able to experience the thrill and excitement provided. This will pick their interest and it will be easier to persuade them to buy the product.

6.0 Recommendation and Conclusion

Since this is a new product, there are many aspects which are still unstable as stated in SWOT analysis. Therefore, Sony has to hire more specialized workers in this and related field to make this product more secure with minimal defects. This will definitely attract more attention and develop more trust from customers to purchase Cita-Vita.

In a nutshell, Cita-Vita is a highly potential product that allows Sony to maximize their sales. It has drawn the attention of many even though it is just an idea. This shows that there will be a demand and market for this product. It can be said that Sony is moving in the right direction with the development of this product. As to date, the research and development department of Sony has begun researching on this product.

7.0 Reference

Anon, 2013, Top of Form

Anon, 2013, Sony’s PS4 Looks To Take Market Share From The Xbox [online] Available at: [Accessed 20 February 2013]

Dibb S., et al., 2006, Marketing Concepts and Strategies, U.S.A., Houghton Mifflin

Fatakia K., 2012, Sony Corporation: Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats [online], My Daily Finance, Available at:

[Accessed date: 8th March 2013]

Five Star Equities, 2012, Video Game Industry Set for Growth — Global Game Market Forecasted to Grow to $82 Billion Five Star Equities Provides Stock Research on Sony and Majesco Entertainment [Press Release] 31 July 2012. Available at: [Accessed 13 February 2013]

Sony Malaysia, [online] Available at: [Accessed 25 February 2013]

Virtual Reality, [online]

Available at: [Accessed 17 February 2013]

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