Apple Case Study of Strategy

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Apple once again delivered very strong results in the face of hesitant consumers under recessionary pressures. Total revenue growth for the latest quarter was +36% led by the Mac brand in personal computers at +51%. The MP3 segment led by the I Pod brand delivered growth of +1% while the iPhone sold 1.7 mm units. So how is Apple able to deliver consistent sales and profit growth in tough recessionary times with premium pricing while many of its competitors deliver poor results. In a phrase --it's their superior branding strategy. A company's brand name is often its most valuable asset. Simply put a "Brand" is a name that consumers associate positive or negative benefits or attributes about a particular product, service or company. Many people think of brands as it relates to the supermarket industry. However, a brand can be more than just a product name. Strong brands can evoke images of dependability " Maytag", safety "Subaru", luxury " Tiffany" or in Apple's case "cool or hip and technologically superior". There are many types of Brand names. You can have a corporate brand name "General Mills" for example (GIS). Most General Mills products have their own individual product brands "Cheerios". The Big G logo is put on most General Mills products to signify trust and consumer confidence. The individual brand "Cheerios is what most consumers remember. In Apple's case, Apple is the corporate brand with iPod being the individual brand. Some companies brand a service or a component of a product "Intel inside". Other companies use an "Umbrella" brand Pepperidge Farm (owned by Campbell Soup-CPB) This where they use the same brand for multiple products (cookies, bread, crackers etc.). Umbrella brands are used when marketing funds are tight and the umbrella brand provides instant name recognition to the consumer. However, companies must be careful not to use the umbrella brand for all products. Kraft (KFT) means "cheese" to consumers. Cheese based products under the...
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