Apple Inc. is among the largest and most successful companies in the world. It is a multinational company that deals with technology items and its main headquarters are located in Cupertino, California. The company got created in the year 1976 by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Ronald Wayne and its main purpose was to come up with and sell computers for personal use to the clients. At that time, its name was Apple Computer Inc., but later it would come to change after undergoing a few problems and successes in the market. At the time, the company had a large market share due to entering a barely established industry, and this foresaw its significance growth in the market as a brand. Its success was described by different people as instant especially in the finance sector. It expanded its market internationally shipping highly innovative products thus getting a big global acclaim. At this time, the only problem the company faced was the tag of war on the prices of the products which were high thus leading to the resignation of one of the founder members Steve Jobs. At this point, the company foresaw a diminishing trend in its sales as most of its competitors brought low-priced products to the market giving the consumers options and variety to choose from according to the capital at their deposition.
So as to counter this problem, the company sought to bring back Steve Jobs as the CEO of the company. He went ahead to implement strategies which worked well thus returning the company to its limelight. Among the strategies he used, Steve Job bought out other competitive companies, opened retail outlets, and even went ahead to make a few changes to the software and hardware designs of the companys products thus foreseeing the return to its successful and profitable nature. Currently, Apple Company has the largest revenue in the information technology sector, and it is also ranked as the second largest phone manufacturing company in the world. The company also has a large number of outlets which add up to 496 stores in different countries around the world. The companys mission and vision statement clearly show its commitments to its goals and providing products and services best suited for use by its customers (Fogliasso & Williams, 2014). They both portray the company as innovative and keen on providing elegant designs on its products.
These mission and vision statements also play a big role in motivating the employees to be fully productive so as to maintain the competitive advantage of the company. The companys mission and vision statement have changed a number of times indicating the evolving nature of the firm in accordance with changes in organization and also market dynamisms. It is thus clear that the mission statement encompasses the components needed to keep the company on its path to success while the vision statement points out the direction of the company towards the development of products and also in terms of growth. As such, both statements are satisfactory as they both serve their intended purpose well.
Products and Services
These products include Mac, iPod, iPhone, Apple Watch, Apple TV, macOS, iOS, iPad and much more. The services the company offers include Apple Pay, Apple Store, iTunes Store Mac App Store and a few others. From the above products and services, it is clear that Apple operations are based in the computer hardware and computer software industry as well as the communication technologies industry. Some of this products showcase the latest technologies thus making the brand very popular in the market. Additionally, Apple Inc. orientation towards the market leans both on its products and also market orientation. The company portrays the product orientation nature due to the emphasis and focus it has on the quality of its products and also the way it uses innovation to spearhead its entry into new markets.
The company ensures that the products are sleek, and very innovative so as to gain a competitive edge on the competing products in the market and attract the attention of more customers. The company also gets termed as market-oriented due to the capacity on which it employs market research and analysis in the process of product and service development and also in improving on its current products. That approach helps the company gain a larger market and also keep check on its competitors thus playing an important role when the company is trying out a new market segment. The brand of a company incorporates the thoughts that come to mind when they hear the mentioning of a certain product from a particular company. For Apple, its brand stands for the companys mission, strategies, vision and also goals. It helps a lot in marketing as it sums up what the companys products and services entail thus contributing a lot to the consumer recognition of what is being offered.
5Cs Analysis of Apple Inc.
This indicates the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that the company faces in the industry and market segments it has for its products and services. The S.W.O.T analysis helps a lot in the market analysis as it part of the tools applicable to doing market research, especially when venturing into new markets (Khan Alam & Alam, 2015). The strengths of the company highlight the internal strategic factors that make it successful. Apple has the following strengths;
The company has a strong brand image
It also has one of the highest profit margins in the world currently
Due to its mission, vision, and values, the company is very effective and efficient in innovations.
All three strengths contribute a lot in terms of flexibility in the companys operations especially in innovation, pricing and product promotion due to its worldwide recognizable brand. The weaknesses of Apple Inc. includes all the inadequacies faced by the company. The most notable weaknesses include:
The company has a network of product and services distribution which is very limited.
Its pricing strategy makes the products have a very high selling price which is unaffordable to many.
The above weakness leads to a limitation of the company sales to the high-end market only.
These weaknesses are as a result of different company policies which contribute both to the success and also limitations of the companys growth and expansion to a larger market. This is especially evident as most consumers are either lower or middle class thus cannot afford to purchase the products. The company also has various opportunities which if exploited can lead to a higher turnover in terms of profits and returns on investment as well as long-term sustainability. Opportunities available for the company are also termed as external strategic factors. They include;
The company can work on increasing and expanding its network of distributing products and services.
There is also a rising demand for smartphones and tablets especially with the current young generating as the world embraces technology in day to day lives.
The innovative nature of the company paves the way for the introduction of new and better products lines.
The threats facing the company also get encompassed in the external strategic factors. If not checked, these threats will limit the companys performance thus stagnating its growth and leading to losses also. Various threats facing Apple Inc. include:
The company is facing aggressive competition from its competitors in the industry.
Cloning and imitation of its products. Currently, this is one of the threats facing all products in the technology industry
There is also a rise in the cost of labor in different countries and this affects the company negatively.
Apple has a wide array of customers worldwide. The company targets the young and innovative generation, the working generation and also other customers through innovation of products based on the tasks they perform and nature of design. Apple uses the analysis of its consumer behaviors to come up with strategies on how to create better products in terms of performance and quality and also in the formation of marketing strategies. Using the Maslows hierarchy needs theory, the company is able to understand the needs of its customers through the evaluation of their behavior. The need under deep scrutiny in this context is the self-actualization needs. Knowing that Apple aims at the high-end markets due to the expensive nature of its markets, the theory indicates that a person will feel the urge to buy such a product in the effort of satisfying their esteem. Others will buy the product as want to gain a certain status in the social circles. The company also conducts consumer behavior analysis by checking on the customer involvement, personal factors that motivate the people in buying, product factors and also situational factors. All the above help the Apple Inc. select a target market thus contributing to marketing strategy development.
Apple Inc. attributes its success from having a few but strategically chosen collaborators in the industry. It has a number of suppliers, partners, and distributors to help in every aspect of the companys operation from manufacturing to selling the products. Research shows that the company has one of the most effective supply management chains in the industry. That is enabled by different key suppliers, partners, and distributors the company uses to carry out its activities. Some of this affiliates include Analog Devices, Glu Mobile, and Jabil Circuit among others. The company has many stores and also uses specifically chosen distributors to sell its products into the market thus ensuring maximum profits due to the elimination of middlemen.
The company competes with various companies in the industry such as Samsung Blackberry and LG. The problems arise where all these companies employ rapid, innovative measures to remain competitive in the industry thus making the market volatile. The threats highlighted above in the SWOT analysis performed on the company indicate that if not careful the competitors will stunt its growth. New policies in different countries, especially in China, lead to a rise in labor costs thus reducing profits and also contributing to the increase in product prices. The application of the Five Forces has helped come up with forces affecting the competitive nature and also the environment of the company. It is clear that the company faces strong and aggressive rivalry from its competitors and there is also upcoming threats from new entrants into the industry.
Context (PESTEL Analysis)
The context of the company incorporates all external factors that affect its operation and growth in different locations and area of expertise. The PESTEL analysis helps in reviewing and grouping all these factors accordingly so as to understand the dynamics affecting the company. A number of political factors are affecting the company the first being taxation. Apple has accumulated a lot of capital in the American economy, and thus this may lead to higher taxation especially due to the income inequality problem facing the United States government (Garver, 2015). The company dependence on China due to the lower manufacturing costs in the region may also affect the company in case political or social unrest arises. Some economic factors and effects include the cost of labor which is rapidly rising in China thus leading to some losses due as the company depended on the country due to fewer costs in production. Also, the inflation and deflation of the United States dollar would lead to a rise in problems especially when the company targets markets in Europe of China.
Social factors also affect the company in various ways. For example, most people are disconnected with the company aim and thus uninterested with its product...
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