In this assignment, I will describe the promotional mix used in Apple and HTC. I will explain how Apple and HTC use the promotional mix to help them to increase awareness of the products and services they sell.
Promotional mix is a key element in the marketing mix. It is used to draw attention and sell the products the business have within the market. It allows consumers to be aware of the products the business sells. In addition, it is a way of advertising the product to the targeted audiences and it is the key element in the marketing mix. There are six main elements of promotional mix:
· Personal selling
· Public relations
· Sales promotion
· Direct marketing
Apple uses some of these promotional mixes to draw attention to the products they have. They use the following promotions to promote their products:
· Personal selling
· Direct marketing
· Public relations
· Sales promotion
Apple uses personal selling which is also known as direct selling/marketing. This is when the salesperson promotes the product with the skills and specialist product knowledge they have. They aim to inform the consumer what the product is and describe the product itself. Explaining how the product works and encourage the customer to buy the product. They use a range of techniques to promote their sales and the company itself is a home to many people. The staffs themselves are friendly and have a great customer service, which creates a good relationship between the seller and consumer. The consumers feel that they are loyal and feel that they are being approached to buy the products directly. In addition, Apple sends emails to consumers about the latest techs they have and persuade customers to purchase the product.
Advertising is a method used by Apple to promote their products. Sometimes advertising is defined as “paid for a method of promotion,” to send the message to the targeted audience and persuade them to buy the product or service. The messages are passed on to the target audience through media. They advertise their products online via YouTube adverts, Television adverts, and through newspapers and magazines, however, this way of advertising has been reduced over the years. They now advertise only online and on TV.
Direct marketing is using the database to target audience with similar characteristics. It is when the product is sold to the consumers directly; this can be done over the phone, through the person directly, social media, or email. Apple uses this method to promote their products and services to consumers. They often send emails to consumers informing them the new techs they are selling and if there are any offers available or any upcoming offers.
Public relations are when a business maintains a mutual respect between the public. It when the organisation manages their reputation within the society. The public relation can include; hospitality events, open days and award celebrations. This will create a positive image of the business. Apple holds many events to promote their products, for example, their recent event which was held first time ever at the Steve Jobs theatre on the 12th September 2017. This so that they can introduce their new iPhones; iPhone 8 and iPhone X to the public. Furthermore, they were awarded by Global fund because they donated $130 million to a partnership with RED. This is to help to save people from AIDS and HIV in Africa.
Sales promotion is when the business spends a great amount of money on promoting their sales. They encourage customers to buy the products, it used to boost sales and attract new customers. There are many methods of sales promotion:
· Free gifts
· Loyalty cards
· BOGOF: “Buy One Get One Free”
· Discount vouchers
Apple put their products on sale sometimes, especially during Christmas so that consumers can purchase products or gifts from them. Furthermore, on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, they put their products on sale. As Apple is a very popular phone brand, many people buy their products on a day-to-day base; they often do not put their products on sales regularly. Only during seasonal periods, they will reduce the price of products. They offer discounts to students and teachers through UNiDAYS, offering cheaper value to students and teachers for education purpose.
Sony uses promotion to increase their sales, which is a key element of marketing mix. They use adverting, sales promotion, sponsorship and public relations.
Advertising is a method used by Sony to promote their products. It is an effective way to promote their products and get attention from customers. They do this in many ways, through media; TV adverts, online, social media. In fact, they spent $3.7 billion in 2016 to promote their sales. They promote their products through social media; Instagram, Twitter and FaceBook, this is so that they can portray their products to the followers they have. They also have a lot of advertisements on YouTube, TV and cinemas; these are very big platforms to promote their products.
Sony uses sales promotion to increase their sales. They have very good deals online and in store, they offer a huge range of sales throughout the year, especially during the Christmas season. They have a lot of discounts, deals and even cash back on a lot of products. On their website, they quote “Check back regularly on new discounts, deals and cash back on all your favourite products.” This is a persuasive way to promote their sales because customers will check regularly to see if there are any sales available. Furthermore, it shows they have regular sales which customers find favourable because they are offered good value for money to expensive products.
Furthermore, Sony wants to have a good public relation with their consumers, so they make it easier for consumers to contact Sony for information or advice. This is to reduce or have no negative relationship with customers, you contact for support through three ways; phone, chat support and through the community as well. They also, hold a lot of events, they recently held PSX 2017 Opening celebration, where they introduced and described the products they have. For example, new games and Virtual reality and they also give free gifts. This is an effective way to promote their products and build a positive relationship with the consumers.
Lastly, Sony sponsors their products in many events. For example, Sony was in partnership with UEFA Champions League, where their play station products used to get sponsored. Sony used to pay the Champion league a lot of money, approximately £45 million a year so that they can be sponsored. This so that they can increase their awareness of their products which will increase their sales. However, this is an expensive method to promote their products, but can be a very effective way of reaching the potential customers.
M2- Explain how promotion is integrated with the rest of the marketing mix in a selected organisation to achieve its marketing aims and objectives.
Promotional mix is a key element of the marketing mix. The marketing mix consists of the seven Ps; Product, Place price, promotion, People, Processes and physical evidence. The four key elements of the marketing mix are product, price, place and promotion, which are also known as the “four Ps.” Promotion focuses on how the business focuses on it target consumers, which can vary depending on the age, gender, ethnicity etc. For a business that wants their promotion to succeed, they will have considered the marketing mix and learnt to adapt to the market in order to have a good promotion.
Apples aims and objectives are found in the mission statement;
“We believe in the simple, not the complex.”
“We believe that we’re on the face of the Earth to make great products.”
“We are constantly focusing on innovating.”
These mission statements are used through the marketing mix.
Apple has a various number of products and in order to sell their products, they will have to promote it. However, before promoting it, they will have to consider some factors. For example, apple has; iphone, iPods, iPads, Mac, Apple TV, and the Apple watch. Each product has its own features, for instance with the iPhone; you can use it to make calls, unlike the iPads where you cannot make calls but do everything else the iphone can do and more, but in a bigger screen. Different product has its own features, which are targeted to the different audiences. Apple is much innovated, and innovate their products and use the latest technology out there. When they make their product, they advertise it, for example, the latest iPhone X has the unique A11 bionic chip which apple claims are the most powerful and smartest chip on a Smartphone. This is a unique feature, which other phones do not have, that makes the phone prominent in the market. This is one of the reasons why consumers buy iPhones, due to its high performance.
Apple uses a premium pricing strategy, which integrates with the promotional mix. This means apple charges higher prices for the products they sell. The new iphone X price starts from £999, which is very expensive, compared to other products in the market. However, it is a reasonable price for the product; this is because of the new features; all-screen, super retina screen, face id, new design with the most durable glass etc. In addition, Apple has good customer satisfaction level, which creates brand loyalty. Apple has over 588 billion Apple users all over the world, which creates a strong brand. Therefore, it adds value to the products they sell and consumers are less likely to switch to alternative companies like Samsung or Google Pixel or etc. This is where their statement “We believe that we’re on the face of the Earth to make great products,” is proven.
When apple makes the products, they sell their products to countries that their targeted audience are available. The products they make are premium, which means they are expensive; therefore, it will not be available in third world countries. The Apple store is accessible to 17 countries across the world since May 2001. They opened over 499 retail stores across the 17 countries, which make it easy to access their products. However, other countries can purchase the apple products and ship it to their countries. Apple products are available in, the Apple stores, authorised retailers and online. This makes it easy to access their products anywhere and anytime. They have different types of online distribution, which makes it accessible to many consumers.
Furthermore, people are also a key element in the marketing mix. This is because Apple will be able to know whether there are enough people in their target audience. The products they make will have to match the demand, therefore the supply cannot be too much or too less. In addition to that, people do not only relate to consumers, it also relates to the employees. Apple will have to ensure they have the right employee’s suitable for the job, this is because they can help the customers and advice them when needed. This integrates with the promotion because having friendly and reliable service will increase their sales and will promote their business. This is because; customers will recommend Apple to others, which will promote them. Employees at Apple are kind and friendly, help customers, and assist them with their queries; therefore, it can create a good connection between the employees and customers. This can be a physiological method to promote their products.
Moreover, the process is how the business operates. This can be how Apple operates on a day-to-day base to how customers receive the product. This means Apple will have to have a good operational system in order to achieve their aims and objectives. Customers will have to be satisfied with their products they sell and how it is delivered to them. They should have a friendly customer service in order to increase their sales.
Lastly, physical evidence is the environment in which the product or service is sold. For example, the Apple store or authorised retailers like Carphone Warehouse or John Lewis etc. Customer will visit these stores to check out the product or to buy the product. This plays a huge a role in marketing mix because customers prefer and expect to shop at places where it is clean, reliable and trustworthy. Apple stores and authorised retailers are very clean and nice and a friendly place to shop, their staffs are very helpful and kind to the customers.
All of these elements are integrated with promotion to achieve Apple’s aims and objectives. Their aims and objectives are found in the mission statement as mentioned before. The marketing mix elements help Apple to achieve their aims and objectives. This is because Apple will know when and how to promote the products and will help them to understand their audience and know their needs.
D1- Evaluate and justify the use of an appropriate promotional mix in relation to marketing objectives for a selected organisation.
Apple uses many to promote their products in the market. They advertise their products in many ways, which attracts customers to buy the products. For example, they advertise their products online, on TV and on billboards. These are very effective ways to advertise their products as it catches consumer’s attention. For example, the new iphone X advertisement video, which is found online and on TV, is very entertaining and eye catching as they are showing of the features of the phone. For example, the Face ID is the main feature of the iPhone X and they are getting different people involved to show how it works. With an instant look, the phone unlocks, which is a feature many consumers will like. This method is very good as it can reach many people and they can gain more potential customers. This means they will be making a lot of profit, as many people will be buying the new products as they are advertised hugely across the world. Furthermore, advertising their new products like the iPhone X on billboards in tube station is very effective. This is because there are millions of people using the tube station everyday and they will see the poster. This will further increase their sales as a lot of people will be seeing the poster.
However, the advertisement is very effective, but it can be expensive for Apple. Advertisement takes a lot of money and time and effort. Advertising companies charge a lot of money for products to be advertised, especially on TV. TV advertisement can cost Apple from $5000 to $10,000 per month. In addition, advertising online and on billboards are expensive too, they will have to grant permission before and create the advertisement and make the posters. Hiring actors and paying an artist to make posters are every expensive and time consuming. Furthermore, there are no guarantees that people will see the advertisement. For example, advertisement on YouTube can be skipped after 5 seconds, and many people do not watch the adverts on TV too. Additionally, people do not wait a long time at Tube stations and they may not see Apple’s posters as there are many posters in the station. Moreover, many people do not pay attention to the billboards and often are too busy doing something else.
Furthermore, their products are displayed in the store. This is an effective way to advertise their products as consumers can see the products physically and use the products itself. For example, they can use the iPads and check it out before buying the product. Customers will be able to know how the products work and will be able to know whether they are comfortable with the product itself. Customers will be able to know if they like the product and they can buy it without any regret as they already tested the product before purchasing it. This is an effective and persuasive way to advertise the products. However, it can be a little expensive, as they will have to display all the products and charge it, which takes a lot of electricity for charging the product itself. In addition, the product may be damaged whilst being displayed by how the customers use the product. In contrast to advertising through videos online and on TV, it is cheaper. This is because when making videos there more expenses compared to displaying the products.
Moreover, Apple holds events to promote their products; this is a form of personal selling. For example, they hold events to promote the products, like their recent event which was held at the Steve Jobs theatre, where they showed off the new products they had made. In the event, they create a good connection between the consumers and advertise the products to them. They encourage consumers to buy the products and are very persuasive as they demonstrate the new features. They are very convincing as they have very good presentation skills and have good knowledge of the products. By holding these events, many people go and see what Apple has created and what they are planning to do next. They have gained new customers and increased their sales. Furthermore, the event can be streamed online, which means everyone across the world can see it. Apples main aim of holding these events is to attract new customers and make everyone see how innovative they are with the technologies. By watching Apple’s event many people get thrilled and cannot wait till Apple announces the release dates of the products. However, holding these events are expensive, as the hall has to be hired and other expenses are involved to hold events, but it is very effective and they gain a lot of potential customers, which increase their sales.
Many networks, like EE, BT, Three etc, sponsor Apple products. For example, the newest iPhone X is also advertised by these networks online and on TV. This is a way to promote the newest phones in the market. This means when consumers go out to shop they may buy the newest iPhone as these networks advertise it. It is an effective way to promote their products and it even raises brand awareness. People may not have heard of the iPhone, by being sponsored by these well-known networks it increases brand awareness. Thus, this can increase the number of customers and increase sales. However, Apple will have to pay these networks to advertise their products and it is a return on investment (ROI).