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Introduction

Initially, the iPhone-differentiated market did not resemble other PDA’s. The Apple Inc will be targeted at a market segment of consumers with similar needs. Individuals, who look for entertainment, information storage, working with documents, or wireless access, characterize the market segment of iPhone. The primary target market segment will be professionals within the middle and upper income classes. Needs of the professional segment include being in touch with clients, co-workers, and partners, as well as fixing their tight schedule and recording different information every minute. The consumer group is selected concerning their income, population size, lifestyles, and education level. The professional groups have considerably high-income levels. People, who are within the upper-middle class, are well-paid professionals with high educational preparedness. The upper-middle class forms 15% of the total population of the United States. In addition, the group has varying high-class lifestyles. Their lifestyles value entertainment as a part of their existence. A considerable part of the professional class is young couples. Such people are very busy and prefer purchasing goods using the Internet that is available in their phones (Block, 2001).

The following iPhone features correspond to the needs of the segment of professionals. The presence of instant messaging, E-mail, as well as the phone itself will enable a professional to stay in touch with their family, colleagues, and friends while working. Professionals have tight schedules that need to be organized. The details of their schedules can be accessed in the iPhone planner application or calendar. The iPhone’s corresponding feature of incorporating applications from Mac OS X. satisfies the need of data recording by the professional.

Demand and Potential

The professionals segment earns approximately $ 90,000 annually. The group will not hesitate to purchase an electronic device such as iPhone which is rather expensive. The high level of income boosts the purchasing power of the professionals. The professionals group has both the potential and the willingness to purchase a lifestyle-related smart phone with all main functions. The needs of the target market segment are well satisfied by the features of iPhone. The professionals group forms the largest part of the segment that utilizes phones, especially iPhones. The large population will create a satisfactory demand for the products of Apple Inc. The disposable income of the upper-middle class professionals has been growing significantly, hence, increasing their purchasing power. Professionals spend the income as they want.

Middle-upper Professionals Buying Habits

The purchasing habits of professionals are purposeful. They follow an informed reason for the purchase of the product, for instance, to satisfy a pressing need such as recording information or fixing the tight schedule. Professionals also consider paying high prices for brand name, quality, and specific functions. However, they are sensitive to exorbitant prices. The purchasing behavior of the middle-upper income professionals is affected by internal and external factors. Internal factors include perception, attitudes, motives, and needs. The external influences, such as social groups, business, and economic, affect their purchase behavior. Their purchase of a product is centered on the product quality and satisfaction. They are also focused on products that raise their social status and go hand in hand with their lifestyle.

Competition

Apple Inc. attracts cutthroat competition from major companies, such as Dell and Palm. Palm is the manufacturer of Treo that is the closest competitor of iPhone. The company has overwhelming experience arising from its long history in the market of PDAs and development of mobile devices software. The brand, as well as existing software of the company product, is compatible with the needs of the corporate world. Being an old generation product, Treo is of a low quality with its interface being hard to use. Treo interface is small, hence difficult to use when accessing the Internet. Many users prefer the embodied keyboard even though others find it satisfactory to use only the touch screen. Palm has designed its product in such a way that it has capabilities similar to those of iPhones, and through their minimal cost, as well as high product power, they can easily penetrate into other market segments.

Dell streak

Dell through the streak, which was originally known as the Dell mini 5, tried to solve the prevailing problems of the screen size. The smart phone has a 5” diagonal screen making it possible for a user to read PDFs, web pages, and emails due to big letters. The Streak is viewed as a true productivity electronic device. The device is portable and, in addition, ensures a perfect and stable work. Simple interface and navigation are the main benefits of the device. The text can be read easily, web pages navigated without any problems, and the keyboard is convenient for the user to type. The Dell Streak is of high quality (Bahareth, 2010). The style and design are all at a high level and pleasant. The device is also thin, making it acceptable and compatible with the 5” screen. The device also looks just like Apple iPhone. The retail price for the phone is approximately $300 that makes it affordable.

Comparison of iPhone, Treo, and Dell Streak

Comparison of the three smart phones is given in the table below. The comparison is based on product quality, consumer satisfaction, interface, compatibility, price, upgradeability, innovativeness, experience, and usability. The scale from 1 to 5 is used, where 1 means the lowest grade and 5 – the highest (Stone, 2004).

           

iPhone

Treo

Dell Streak

Consumer service

4

3

4

Product quality

5

4

5

Interface

4

3

5

Compatibility

4

4

3

Price

4

4

4

Upgradeability

5

2

3

Innovativeness

4

3

4

Experience

3

5

2

Usability

5

4

5

 Target Market Entry Strategy

iPhone will pursue a last-to-market strategy as it will be entering the USA market two years late. The strategy is purported to be successful and feasible for Apple due to the following reasons: a) iPhone inventive superior design, b) impressively easy use, and c) the maximum secrecy of all the iPhone details until the launch date. Apple will use its premium design and easy use to capture a bigger market share. In addition, Apple has a good reputation among consumers. The strategy of maximum secrecy is significantly important as it will limit any attempts of imitation by competitors.

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