Strategic Management – Question and Answers for NMIMS Assignment

December 2023 Examination

You are a mobile phone manufacturer manufacturing phones for different segments of the population. Sales for your lower segment phones is falling while sales for your higher segment is increasing. Why do you think is this happening? What could be the reasons? How do you deal with situation? Does this need any change of strategy? What changes would you do in strategy? Give valid reasons, examples while answering the questions.

The falling sales for lower segment phones and increasing sales for higher segment phones can be attributed to various factors, and addressing this situation effectively requires a thorough analysis and potential changes in strategy. Let’s explore the reasons and how to deal with this situation:

Reasons for Falling Sales in Lower Segment Phones:

  1. Market Saturation: The lower segment of the smartphone market might be saturated. Most people who can afford these phones may already own one, leading to reduced demand.
  2. Rising Expectations: Consumers in this segment are becoming more demanding. They expect better features and performance, which may not be provided by the lower-end models.
  3. Competition: Intense competition in the lower segment from both established and new players can lead to lower market share and profit margins.
  4. Aging Technology: Older models may no longer meet the minimum technical requirements for popular apps and services, dissuading potential buyers.
  5. Lack of Innovation: Lower segment phones may not offer compelling new features, as innovation is often prioritized in higher-end models.

Reasons for Increasing Sales in Higher Segment Phones:

  1. Better Performance and Features: High-end phones offer superior performance, camera capabilities, and advanced features, which appeal to tech-savvy consumers and enthusiasts.
  2. Status Symbol: Some consumers view owning a premium smartphone as a status symbol, driving sales of high-end models.
  3. Durability and Longevity: High-end phones often have better build quality and materials, leading to longer lifespans.
  4. Ecosystem and Integration: High-end phones may offer better integration with other tech products and services, which can be attractive to users invested in a particular ecosystem (e.g., Apple or Samsung).

Dealing with the Situation and Changing Strategy:

To address this situation, a mobile phone manufacturer should consider the following changes in strategy:

  1. Product Portfolio Adjustment: Reevaluate the lower segment product lineup to offer more value, better performance, and competitive pricing. Invest in research and development to make incremental improvements and introduce new features while keeping the cost low.
  2. Marketing and Positioning: Rebrand the lower segment as “affordable yet capable” devices, emphasizing the value proposition for cost-conscious consumers.
  3. Customer Education: Educate potential buyers about the capabilities and suitability of lower segment phones, ensuring that they understand the trade-offs compared to higher-end models.
  4. Differentiated Marketing: Target different customer segments with customized marketing campaigns. Use aspirational marketing for higher-end phones and practical, value-focused messaging for lower-end models.
  5. Channel Distribution: Optimize distribution channels for different segments. High-end phones can be sold through premium retailers, while lower-end models may benefit from partnerships with budget-focused retail chains.
  6. Innovation at Both Ends: Continue to invest in innovation for high-end phones while also exploring low-cost innovations to maintain competitiveness in the lower segment.
  7. After-sales Service: Improve customer support and after-sales service for lower-end devices to enhance the overall ownership experience.
  8. Customer Loyalty Programs: Introduce loyalty programs and trade-in options to incentivize existing customers to upgrade within your product ecosystem.

In conclusion, addressing the decline in lower segment phone sales and the rise in higher segment phone sales requires a balanced approach. Manufacturers should focus on value, innovation, marketing, and customer education to cater to the diverse needs and expectations of their customer base. Flexibility in strategy and continuous market analysis are key to adapting to changing market dynamics and ensuring long-term success.

India has been a laggard in the world of Sports. You have been appointed as a consultant for strategy for building a sports ecosystem in India. Suggest a strategic road map to make India a sporting powerhouse.

To transform India into a sporting powerhouse, a strategic roadmap must address various aspects of sports development, including infrastructure, grassroots participation, talent identification, coaching, funding, and sports culture. Here’s a comprehensive strategy to achieve this goal:

1. Investment in Infrastructure:

a. Build state-of-the-art sports facilities, stadiums, and training centers across the country to support multiple sports.

b. Upgrade existing infrastructure to meet international standards.

2. Grassroots Participation:

a. Introduce sports education programs in schools and colleges to promote sports at the grassroots level.

b. Organize inter-school and inter-college competitions to identify and nurture talent.

3. Talent Identification and Development:

a. Establish talent identification programs to spot potential athletes at a young age.

b. Create residential academies for promising athletes with access to top-notch coaching and facilities.

c. Encourage participation in a wide range of sports to diversify talent pools.

4. Coaching and Sports Science:

a. Develop a robust coaching infrastructure with certified coaches for various sports.

b. Promote research in sports science and sports medicine to enhance performance and injury prevention.

5. Funding and Sponsorship:

a. Create a National Sports Fund to channel funds into sports development.

b. Attract corporate sponsorships and partnerships to support athletes and sports organizations.

6. Grassroots and Elite Competitions:

a. Organize national-level grassroots competitions to identify and nurture talent.

b. Host international events to raise India’s profile and encourage participation in various sports.

7. Governance and Administration:

a. Ensure transparent and efficient governance of sports bodies with proper checks and balances.

b. Establish an independent sports ombudsman to address disputes and ensure accountability.

8. Sports Culture and Awareness:

a. Launch nationwide campaigns to promote sports culture, fitness, and the importance of sports in education.

b. Use media, including digital platforms, to broadcast and celebrate sporting events and success stories.

9. Inclusion and Diversity:

a. Promote inclusivity by encouraging women’s participation and supporting athletes from marginalized communities.

b. Develop programs for athletes with disabilities and integrate para-sports into the mainstream.

10. International Exposure:

a. Facilitate international exposure and exchange programs for athletes, coaches, and administrators to learn and adapt best practices.

b. Foster relationships with international sports organizations and leverage India’s soft power in diplomacy to host global sports events.

11. Long-term Sustainability:

a. Ensure continuity of programs through multi-year funding commitments and strategic planning.

b. Develop long-term talent pipelines to sustain India’s presence in the world of sports.

12. Athlete Welfare:

a. Provide comprehensive support for athlete welfare, including insurance, post-retirement opportunities, and mental health resources.

b. Establish an Athletes’ Commission to address the concerns and feedback of athletes.

Creating a sporting powerhouse in India will require patience, persistence, and a coordinated effort involving the government, sports organizations, corporate partners, educational institutions, and the public. This roadmap should serve as a foundation for a holistic and long-term approach to transform India into a global sports powerhouse.

You are the marketing strategy head for a major online music service. Your business is dependent on advertising, but, despite the large number of consumers listening to your app. Advertisers have not been enthused to advertise. (5 Marks) a. What strategy should you adopt to get advertisers on board? Give examples to justify your answer.

To attract advertisers to the online music service, it’s essential to develop a comprehensive marketing strategy that demonstrates the platform’s value to potential advertisers. Here’s a strategy with examples to justify the approach:

1. Audience Segmentation:

  • Analyze the platform’s user base to segment the audience based on demographics, interests, and behavior. This allows advertisers to target specific groups effectively.
  • Example: Show advertisers data indicating that a significant portion of your user base is in the 18-34 age group, which is a key demographic for many advertisers.

2. Data-Driven Advertising:

  • Leverage user data to offer precise targeting capabilities to advertisers. Highlight the ability to deliver personalized ads to users based on their preferences and behaviors.
  • Example: Share success stories of advertisers who achieved higher conversion rates through personalized campaigns on your platform.

3. Ad Creative Innovation:

  • Encourage advertisers to create engaging, interactive, and immersive ad experiences that align with the platform’s content and user experience.
  • Example: Showcase interactive ads that allow users to engage with the brand’s content within the music app, such as interactive games or exclusive content.

4. Contextual Advertising:

  • Offer contextual advertising opportunities, where ads are integrated seamlessly with the platform’s content, ensuring a non-disruptive user experience.
  • Example: Illustrate how ads can be integrated between song recommendations or in between playlists for a natural transition.

5. Multi-Channel Promotion:

  • Promote the platform’s advertising options across various channels, including social media, industry events, and industry publications, to increase visibility among potential advertisers.
  • Example: Run targeted social media campaigns showcasing successful case studies and advertising options.

6. Analytics and Measurement:

  • Provide advertisers with robust analytics and reporting tools to demonstrate the effectiveness of their campaigns and the return on investment (ROI).
  • Example: Share insights on how advertisers can track key performance metrics, such as click-through rates, conversions, and brand visibility.

7. Creative Partnerships:

  • Collaborate with creative agencies and offer resources to help advertisers craft compelling ad content.
  • Example: Develop partnerships with creative agencies to create exclusive, platform-specific ad content that aligns with the music service’s branding.

8. Ad Formats Diversity:

  • Offer a variety of ad formats, including audio, video, display, and interactive formats, allowing advertisers to choose the format that suits their campaign objectives.
  • Example: Showcase how a mix of ad formats can cater to different advertiser goals, from brand awareness to direct response.

9. Pricing Flexibility:

  • Develop flexible pricing models, including performance-based options, to accommodate a range of advertising budgets.
  • Example: Present advertisers with a tiered pricing structure, offering cost-effective options for smaller businesses and startups.

10. Advertiser Support and Training:

  • Provide training and support to help advertisers make the most of the platform’s advertising capabilities.
  • Example: Create webinars or video tutorials demonstrating how to set up and optimize advertising campaigns on the platform.

By implementing these strategies and showcasing the platform’s unique selling points, you can make a compelling case for advertisers to invest in your online music service, ultimately boosting your advertising revenue and strengthening your position in the market.

Create two ideas to engage with advertisers.

Let us discuss here are two creative ideas to engage with advertisers:

1. Advertiser Advisory Council:

Establish an “Advertiser Advisory Council” comprising representatives from key advertising partners. This council would meet regularly (quarterly or semi-annually) to discuss platform improvements, ad formats, and ad performance. The council’s purpose would be to:

  • Gather feedback and insights from advertisers about their experiences on the platform.
  • Collaboratively brainstorm innovative ad formats or features that align with advertisers’ goals and users’ interests.
  • Share market trends, research findings, and user behavior data to help advertisers make informed decisions.
  • Provide early access to beta features or ad innovations for testing and feedback.

The key benefit of this idea is that it fosters a strong relationship with advertisers, making them feel heard and valued. It also leads to more relevant and effective ad solutions, which can increase advertisers’ confidence in investing in your platform.

2. Advertiser-User Engagement Initiatives:

Create campaigns or initiatives that directly involve users in advertiser campaigns. For example:

  • User-Generated Ad Content: Encourage users to create user-generated content (UGC) as part of an advertiser’s campaign. Users can participate in challenges, contests, or storytelling related to the brand or product, with the chance to win prizes or recognition.
  • Incentivized User Surveys: Implement a feature where users can provide feedback on ads they’ve seen in exchange for small rewards (e.g., premium app features, ad-free listening for a limited time).
  • Interactive User-Ad Experiences: Develop interactive ads where users can engage with the brand or product directly within the ad. For example, users could take a quiz, personalize a product, or play a mini-game within the ad.

These initiatives bridge the gap between advertisers and users, making ads more engaging, relevant, and enjoyable for the audience. They also allow advertisers to benefit from user-generated content and data insights. Advertisers may become more enthusiastic about partnering with your platform if they see increased user participation and engagement in their campaigns.

By implementing these ideas, you can create a more interactive and engaging environment for advertisers on your platform, strengthening partnerships and encouraging them to invest more in your advertising services.

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