Amazon Kindle Marketing Strategy

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Kindle DX Marketing Strategy Analysis

Launching any product requires a lot of planning and forethought. Without a proper plan, it becomes difficult to design the most appropriate marketing strategy than can lead the way towards success.

The 4 P’s
We must analyze the 4 P’s i.e. the product, price, place and promotion. In the case of Kindle DX launch, the type of product is relatively new in the market. For this unique kind of product, which seems to be an advanced version of book, it might take time before the target market can realize the importance of the product to them. To cross this stage, promotion of the product is necessary. The product is an enhancement over its predecessors in terms of its screen size which changes it target market more towards college students, who can interpret this device as ebook reader.

The company is using the below the line marketing strategy. One aspect of this strategy is the word-of-mouth method, which involves the promotion undertaken by the buyers of product themselves. The company firmly believes that this method can bring more success than other methods. However, relying to the large extent on just one method exposes the company to risks of negative publicity because unsatisfied buyers can spread negative information about the product. The company virtually has no control over this method of marketing unless they supplement it with above the line advertising such as internet advertising and through select print media, especially those which are more often viewed by the target market.

The price of the product seems to be high for the chosen target market. The lighter backpack is one advantage paid off from the high price but the device does not fully addresses the requirements of a college student. A college student with a cheaper mini or a laptop has far more options than the one having just the E-book reader. The device lacks a browser, color display and also the advantage of viewing a video. Learning today is becoming more integrated; a college student today may often view videos related to studies such as lectures and documentaries. Thus a college student with a laptop or mini may find it heavier to carry an additional device (Vaknin). Here we can also make it clear that the company should have looked upon the requirements of the target market before deciding whether they should launch the product in the first place. One can argue that the free access to wireless internet and highly discounted prices of electronic textbooks can justify the high price, however, the manufacturer has failed to take account of the second hand books market where a printed textbook can be purchased for half the price and this could be cheaper than an electronic book or just as expensive as a electronic book offered by Amazon. But still, the device cannot display the colors in the book which might not be liked by the readers. Another justification to high price is the larger screen which is capable for reading newspapers coupled with an agreement with the major US newspapers to provide newspapers to Kindle DX. This advantage led to speculations that the device is destined for newspaper readers, but it was made clear that this device is designed for the college students.

The company has decided to distribute the device in a large pilot project. (Reid, 5) Under that, the company will supply the device to about five universities instead of the books it usually supplies. This mode of distribution has several advantages. It is one of the ways to somehow make the product ubiquitous and assert that the device is as essential to a college student as textbook have been till date. If the pilot project succeeds as planned, then the device would be voluntarily be bought by the students. Amazon defends the position that the pilot project is designed to lead students to later make voluntary purchases. They say that the device is already popular and present the...
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