I. Situation Analysis
A thorough analysis of the situation in which the firm finds itself serves as the basis for identifying opportunities to satisfy unfulfilled customer needs. In addition to identifying the customer needs, the firm must understand its own capabilities and the environment in which it is operating.
If the situation analysis reveals gaps between what consumers want and what currently is offered to them, then there may be opportunities to introduce products to better satisfy those consumers. Hence, the situation analysis should yield a summary of problems and opportunities. From this summary, the firm can match its own capabilities with the opportunities in order to satisfy customer needs better than the competition.
A SWOT analysis can be used to condense the situation analysis into a listing of the most relevant problems and opportunities and to assess how well the firm is equipped to deal with them.
A SWOT analysis allows businesses to assess internal strengths and weaknesses in relation to external opportunities and threats.
A SWOT analysis is a strategic method used to evaluate the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats related to a project or business venture. A SWOT assessment involves specifying the business's objective and then identifying the internal and external factors that are favourable and unfavourable toward the business's ability to achieve its objective. Setting the objective, in terms of moving from strategy planning to strategy implementation, should be done after the SWOT analysis has been performed. Doing so allows the organization to set achievable goals and objectives.
II. Product Life Cycle
The product life cycle is an important concept in marketing. It describes the stages a product goes through from when it was first thought of until it finally is removed from the market. Not all products reach this final stage. Some continue to grow and others rise and fall.
After all research and development has be done it is time to launch the product and begin its lifecycle. The introduction stage of the product life cycle is when the marketing team emphasizes promotion and the product's initial distribution. Often the product will have little or no competitors at this point. Nonetheless, sales may remain low because it takes time for the market to accept the new product. At this stage of the life cycle, the company usually loses money on the product.
In the growth stage of the product life cycle, the market has accepted the product and sales begin to increase. The company may want to make improvements to the product to stay competitive. At this point, there are still relatively few competitors.
In the maturity stage of the product life cycle, sales will reach their peak. Other competitors enter the market with alternative solutions, making competition in the market fierce. The company that introduced the new product may begin to find it difficult to compete in the market.
In the decline stage of the product life cycle, sales will begin to decline as the product reaches its saturation point. Most products are phased out of the market at this point due to the decrease in sales and because of competitive pressure. The market will see the product as old and no longer in demand.
There is no set schedule for the stages of a product life cycle. Differences will occur depending on the type of product, how well it is received by the market, the promotional mix of the company, and the aggressiveness of the competition.
Case Study – VW
III. Market Research
The process of systematically collecting, recording and analysing information concerning a specific marketing problem.
Determining information needs
The information collected must be relevant to the issue or problem being investigated. The best methods to determine the relevance of data is too constantly ask questions concerning its ultimate use. Information is useful