Essay On SWOT
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SWOT is an acronym that stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. In the business and marketing environment, the SWOT analysis of an organization or company if done correctly could have a large impact on the success and profitability of the company. SWOT analysis is an in-depth study of the market and business environment in which the company in question lies. In carrying out this analysis, one investigates the strengths of the company in question.
What are the positive traits that the company exhibits in its capacity? These are fundamentally what are responsible for giving the company a sharper competitive edge insofar as other companies offering similar products are concerned. The weaknesses pay attention to the pitfalls and loopholes that the company displays or falls prey to. Strengths and weaknesses are largely in-house while threats as well as opportunities rely heavily on the environment surrounding the business.
The strengths that a company holds are vital as they are the primary driving force of the company. For example, a company that is a forerunner in the development of a particular technology possesses a unique strength in the fact that a majority of people associate the pioneering of the technology to the specific company. Learning the weaknesses that a company has is equally important. For instance, the knowledge that one’s company has lackluster staff and inefficient personnel could prove valuable to a company when it wants to rebrand itself and capture a larger market share. Improving on this guarantees overall improvement of the company in its marketing endeavors.
Having a keen eye or spotting the opportunities available to a company is important in developing a working and efficient marketing plan. This is for the simple reason that by having knowledge on the opportunities available in the market as well as consumer needs one can develop a clear and concise marketing plan. This plan will target a specific audience with a product specifically tailored for them. A good example is a SWOT analysis for a technology company that shows the opportunity available for the technology company say in developing an application that is capable of helping consumers determine where to eat for a certain price.
The threats presented in the analysis are use to determine how a company can develop a marketing plan that will enable them to outdo their competition. This is only possible if one has a clear understanding of the competition and the challenge they present in the provision of a certain service. Take for example two application development firms. In order to understand how to capture a good share of the market, both need to know what their competitors are offering the public then devise how they can offer something better.
3: 4 P’s of Marketing
In the world of marketing, there are four P’s that act as golden rules as far as designing a marketing plan is concerned. These are Product, Price, Promotion and Place. These four P’s are used to plan exactly how the marketing will be controlled. They describe the product to be marketed, the price that the product will go for, how the product will be promoted to the public to ensure its success and the place describes the distribution channels to be employed and how these channels will be controlled to guarantee success.
The Product clearly explains the product in question. It explains the role played by building, maintaining and harvesting the product in question. It shows the path that would best be taken by the organization insofar as handling their product is concerned. It also gives a clear guideline on the management of the mature brands in the company’s portfolio and the need to develop new brands to meet consumer needs in the market.
The Price is a keystone measure that is used primarily to determine how much the said product will go for. In setting the price, factors such as demand, competition, profit, price elasticity and distribution among others are put into play. The ability to achieve a delicate balance of all these factors results in a price that is affordable to the consumer as well as profitable to the company. A clear incorporation of this into the marketing plan results in much more success. Promotion details the role the marketing is supposed to play and the possible impact o the consumer.
For instance, the roles that advertising, direct sales or promotion and public relations play in the overall marketing of the product will eventually determine the success or failure of the product. Lastly, the Place outlines the distribution channels that will be used in the distribution of the product. These also pay special attention to channel control. This explains whether the product will be franchised or not, whether distribution will be on a national, regional or local scale, how the channel will be controlled as well as other logistics that are necessary in the promotion of the product on the desired scale.
The four P’s aside, another vital component of the marketing process are the four C’s. These are Customer solution, Customer cost, Convenience and Communication. The four C’s are important to the marketing process because they enable the organization to address the main issues of concern at the tail end of the marketing chain. Through delivery of a quality product that meets the needs of the consumer, they are able to provide a solution to the problem that the consumer had to grapple with before the development of the said product.
In addressing the Customer cost, the organization is able to avail a quality product at an affordable rate which pushes up the sales figures for the company. This in turn results in higher profits for the company. Convenience is vital because it enables the end consumer to access the product whether it is a good or a service at their comfort and convenience. Through providing a unique and accessible location from which one can obtain the product, the company is able to develop a competitive edge as far as convenience is concerned. Last but not least, through effective communication, the company is able to promote its goods and services effectively guaranteeing greater sales figures and profit margins.
4: Market Approaches
With the development of new marketing strategies, companies have been forced to adopt new marketing approaches. Companies are now carrying out specific marketing that targets a particular market. There are three kinds of approaches to marketing; Mass Market, Mass Customization and Niche Marketing. These different approaches are geared to realize different goals with each approach being specific to a particular group. In Mass market, the product being marketed is for everyone. This results in a company carrying out an all inclusive marketing plan that will easily identify with people from different age groups that use the product (Rosenbloom 2009).
For instance, a company marketing toothbrushes or toothpaste will mount a marketing plan that will encompass all the different users of this product. This is because the product serves a mass market and should therefore capture all audiences. In Mass Customization, the companies market their ability to create custom products for their consumers. In this marketing campaign, the marketers pay special attention to the lovers of custom commodities. A good example of a scenario in which mass customization marketing is applied is in the production of football or baseball jerseys.
The company manufacturing these products conducts a marketing campaign geared towards attracting the basketball, football or baseball lover who would like to have a jersey bearing the number of his or her favorite player but having their own name. In Niche marketing, a company angles itself towards capturing the market in a specific niche. Through determining the kind of services or products that those enshrined in the niche want, they are able create niche-specific products and so market their company in the specific niche.
One such example is the luxurious wristwatch niche. Through their ability to offer luxury wristwatches targeting the upper middleclass and wealthy individuals, Rolex were able to capture this niche. They carry out niche marketing that pays attention to the needs of the people in their niche. A good example of their niche marketing is marketing Rolex products alongside golf, a sport also associated with the members of their niche.
5: 21st Century versus 20th Century Marketing Philosophy
Time has resulted in a paradigm shift in the marketing world. This has largely been characterized by the adoption of new and modern methods and techniques of marketing. Although old is gold, these new techniques have proven better and more useful than the old techniques (Sandhusen 2000). The end result of this is marketing that is done in a completely revolutionized manner and more zeros on the paychecks of companies.
In the old marketing philosophy, the business focused on selling its output to the end consumer while in the new philosophy, the businesses have become consumer oriented. While the old technique emphasized the sale of existing sock or services to the end consumer for a profit, this new technique supports paying close attention to the end consumer. In being consumer-oriented, the business is able to focus on offering and marketing what the consumer wants rather than what an organization has produced to the consumer.
While the old philosophy was keen on short-term goals, the new one is based on long-range goals. This new philosophy conducts marketing with the view of ensuring the company exists for years and years to come. This develops a sense of product loyalty from some consumers thus ensuring long-term survival of the business. On the other hand, the old philosophy was extremely geared towards short term goals. The companies conducted marketing to promote a specific commodity that they had in stock or that was booming at the time.
This failed to create a lasting impression on the consumers and thus future survival was never guaranteed. The old philosophy had a very narrow view o the consumer needs while the new philosophy has a deep understanding of consumer needs. Owing to the extreme competition in the market today, companies have been forced to have a deep understanding of consumer needs to ensure that they can meet the needs and wants of the end consumer.
A majority of companies even conduct intensive surveys to determine the needs of the consumers so as to align their marketing strategies with the needs of the consumers. It is also clear that the old philosophy resulted in companies been less adaptable to the market environment while the new one practically forces the companies to adapt to the market environment in terms of consumer wants, consumer needs as well as trends.
While the old philosophy had its pros, the new marketing philosophy has proved a better marketing tool. I think that the new philosophy is far better as it works towards guaranteeing a sustainable company for posterity as well as a flexible company that can easily adapt to the consumer needs.
Rosenbloom, B. (2009). Marketing channels. S.l.: South-Western.
Sandhusen, R. (2000). Marketing. Hauppauge, N.Y: Barron's.