Marketing is one of the crucial processes in various institutions that ensures that such business entities reach their consumers. The marketing mix defines elements that are used together to have an influence on the purchase of products by individuals. The elements of the marketing mix include price of the product, product, promotion taken for the product and place. Apple is a multinational corporation in the information technology industry and has several products that it needs to market to its potential customers. It is necessary to analyze the marketing mix implemented by Apple to identify its chosen forms of advertisements, the places it uses as outlets for its products, the product being marketed and the prices it sets for the products.
Apple is a multinational company based in California, the United States. The operation operates in the information technology industry, developing both hardware and software products within the market niche. The company has over the years been ranked among the best in the industry, and this cannot be reached without an investment in marketing. The corporation’s products have been seen as the faces of innovation within the industry hence the reason why Apple has continued outperforming its rivals. The main rivals include Microsoft in the personal computers division, Samsung in the smartphones’ division, Dell Computers, among others. As stated, the company prides itself as one that pioneers innovation in all the sectors of the industry.
The first of the marketing mix elements is the product. It defines the goods or services availed to the consumers by the company. Apple deals with a variety of hardware and software products that it seeks to promote to its present customers and potential clients. The first batch of products deals with the portable computers including the Mac products such as Mac Book, iMac, Mac Book Pro among others. The company also deals with servers including the Xserve models, the MobileMe models and others. Apple also develops software applications for these devices. The MacOS X is for the desktop and portable computers while the MacOS Server is for the servers. Apple has also dominated in several sections of the electronic industry by developing products such as the iPod brand that includes iPod classic, iPod Shuffle and iPod Nano (Lamb et al.). The company has also invested in an online music platform known as iTunes. Through this platform, different artists have been able to sell their music to the public. iTunes has also started selling movies to the public, various television shows, games, and books among others. The last market niche in the information technology industry in which Apple has invested in the phone market. Apple’s iPhone has the highest market share compared to its competitors. The company enjoys producing generation after generation of smartphones. The product lifecycle defines the stages a product goes through from its development till it is removed from the market. On the one hand, products such as iPhone, Apple Tv, iTunes, and the portable computers are still in their growth and maturity stages of the product lifecycle. This is because constant development and advertising should be done to gain access to market share. On the other hand, a product like iPod is in its decline stage of the product lifecycle. This is because its use has become obsolete, since phones have all the functions of iPod. Apple Inc. is the corporate brand and is made up of several master brands. The iPhone serves as the first of the brands and is the most marketed of all the brands. The other master brand is the Mac portable computers. Apple implements a multi-product branding strategy, as all its products are labelled as Apple such as Apple Mac, Apple iPhone, and other products. Multi-branding is a strategy whereby a company markets all its products using the name of the corporation. In this case, Apple uses its own name in all its products. The company uses line extensions especially on its iPhone product. The iPhone series has released the iPhone 4, 5, 6,7 8 and X. Line extension means that the institution develops its products incrementally. In this case, the iPhone brand improves in its features throughout each new product.
The next element of marketing mix implemented by Apple is pricing. Pricing as a marketing tool affects the prices set by a company. It can affect the buying power in several ways. Apple’s pricing strategy is mainly considered as premium pricing (Pride and Ferrell). The price range in its various products depends on the series of the product. For iPhones, the iPhone 4 series goes for as little as $90. The iPhone 6 series goes for between $300-$400, while the latest iPhone X is set to go for $999. The same goes for the portable computers which range from $500-$2000 depending on the model. The products do not focus on all sections of the society but deal with the consumers who can afford premium pricing. All the items developed by the company are considered to be high-end products that call for a premium pricing. Therefore, Apple uses penetration skimming for all its goods by setting them up at the highest prices and making revenues from the individuals who can afford them. Apple performs price segmentation in its iPhone brand by developing two kinds of phones for each series. For instance, for the iPhone 5 series the company produced iPhone 5, 5S and 5C. 5S was for the premium customers, and 5C for those who cannot afford the 5S. This has also been observed in iPhone 7 where the corporation produced 7 and 7S models.
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Certainly, Apple also uses place as a marketing mix element. The company utilizes various distribution channels. The first of these channels is having its own website that doubles as a distribution channel. Individuals can shop from the company’s website and get their goods after several days. Moreover, the iTunes platform is also a distribution channel for movies, songs and audio books from authors and artists that the company helps to sell. The process of buying products from the corporation’s website includes signing up into the website and filling the cart with the products that one wishes to purchase. Apart from its website, Apple has other online distribution channels such as the e-commerce giants as Amazon among other online retailers. Apple also has distributors throughout the globe that helps the company to reach the consumers of its products that are located throughout the world. The distributors are known as corporate resellers who are allowed by the corporation to sell their goods. Apart from the corporate resellers, the company also has local retailers that help to distribute its goods within the localities. This kind of distribution strategy is known as an inclusive strategy, since the firm uses all the available channels to distribute its products. The strategy adopted by the company to reach its premium customers through the online platforms, corporate resellers, its own outlets and the local retailers can be viewed as an aggressive strategy, since instead of focusing on one distribution channel as observed by some of its competitors, the corporation chose to follow a comprehensive strategy to reach as many individuals as possible.
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The last marketing mix element is the promotion. Through promotion, the company is able to persuade potential customers to buy its own products. Several strategies have been implemented in product promotion. The first one is the word of mouth. Apple relies on its customers to sell the products for it (Bidgoli). The clients tell their colleagues of the experience that they have while using the product, and this cycle continues until the company acquires new users. Word of mouth marketing is especially crucial for Apple’s new products. Before any of the products are released into the market, most people usually know about them and wait for the product to be released. This strategy works, since during the first days of the release of a new product, the distribution centers are usually flocking with consumers seeking to purchase the product. The company also utilizes the print media and television as a part of its aggressive promotion. The corporation also uses social media as a promotion tool for its products. Most potential consumers for its items can be found on the various social media platforms. As a result, Apple has invested in putting advertisements on social media, and as a result, has continued to gain market share due to its moves. All the advertisements developed by Apple for the online market, televisions or even the print media serve to differentiate its products from those of its competitors. This is made possible by introducing features in the items that are yet to be observed in other competing devices. Apple’s promotions have several elements. The first of them is the elegance of the advertisements. The ads are made to be precise and to the point. Another element is the premium nature of the advertisements (Lamb et al.). The company believes in communication and, as a result, creates ads that are of high quality and that show consumers what the product being advertised can do. Lastly, the corporation does not have any price-based offers during its promotion. As compared to its competitors which use price as a promotional tool, Apple does not have any promotional discounts for its products apart from rare occasions where it provides discounts for students. Investing in such an aggressive promotional plan continues to show the kind of brand that Apple has built within its market niche. As a result, people have learned how to trust the brand.
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Overall, Apple’s marketing mix shows a carefully structured marketing mix to influence buyers in every possible way. It shows the face of a brand that continues to develop high standards and with each product proves the consumer that they should pay the premium prices for the products (Lamb et al.). The reason why sale discounts are not used to entice consumers is that Apple believes that it has done everything to build trust with the customers. As a result, potential clients should feel the need for the product and not feel obliged to buy the product because of any discounts offered.
In conclusion, companies continue to use various marketing mechanisms to reach new consumers and to retain older ones. Apple is one of the business entities in the information technology market. Through the products that it develops, through innovation the company continues to be the market leader. It implements multiproduct branding for its products by using the name Apple in all the products. Another element of the marketing mix is place. Apple has several distribution channels throughout the world that help the company to distribute its products and utilizes an inclusive distribution strategy. The corporation implements a premium pricing strategy meaning that only the individuals who are able to afford high-end products can purchase the products. It also uses penetration skimming for its products and price segmentation. Lastly, the company takes part in product promotion that sees it communicate to the consumers the need to purchase their products.