Marketing: Foundations and applications
Course code: BMAN-20390
Marketing analysis of IBM
1.0 Thesis statement
“Evaluate the marketing strategy of a blue-chip company you are familiar with. Your evaluation should critically discuss the concept of the marketing mix as applied to your chosen organisation and at least one other academic marketing theory.”
IBM is a very large organization so the planning process of a marketing strategy that is coherent with the corporate strategy is made complicated and difficult because IBM operates in a number of significantly different markets. I have therefore since I am an employee of IBM Denmark decided that this is the “strategic business unit” that I am going to analyze in terms of their marketing strategy.
Furthermore the portfolio of products that IBM Denmark supplies ranges from everything to hardware sales, software sales and consultancy services. There might be a significant difference in the way these products are promoted, and I have therefore narrowed it further down to focus on the tertiary activities, meaning the marketing strategy of the consultancy services (in IBM known as GBS – Global Business Services).
This limitation is convenient because it allows me to properly analyze the marketing strategy in this given area – as opposed to making an analysis based upon IBM as a whole with their entire portfolio of products, as this would not be fulfilling in a 2500 word essay.
IBM mission statement:
“At IBM, we strive to lead in the invention, development, and manufacture of the industry’s most advanced information technologies, including computer systems, software, storage systems, and microelectronics. We translate these advanced technologies into value for our customers through our professional solutions, services, and consulting businesses worldwide”.
From the mission statement above we can conclude that IBM wants to be a leader on the blue-chip market – which we in terms of their size can conclude they are close to being. In the following essay the reader will be introduced to the marketing strategy of IBM. Furthermore the reader will be introduced to a SWOT analysis, in which it will be discussed and concluded which strategic position IBM has on the current market. In regards to the limitation above this will be an analysis based upon IBMs services provision in Denmark. The reader will find out that the classical approach with the 4ps of marketing doesn’t really apply to this part of the business that IBM conducts. Instead an additional three Ps has been added, and these will be discussed as well.
One of the trustiest tools in business is the SWOT analysis. Corporations takes a calm, cool look down at the organisations Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threat’s. Then they seek to capitalise on the strengths, eliminate the weaknesses, seize the best opportunities and counter the threats. Figure 4.1 is a SWOT analysis of the global business services for IBM, and the end result of this analysis should help us to give a clear view of IBM’s strategic position on the market, which we then can use to discuss their marketing strategy.
Figure 4.1 – IBM DK GBS SWOT
IBM Denmark has been on the Danish market since 1950 – which leaves them with a significant amount of experience of the market. The wide range of their strategic competencies runs from everything from hardware-sales to business consultancy, the latter being one of their profitable areas of expertise. Furthermore IBM DK has a leading position on the Danish services market, being one of the biggest consultancy houses in the country. It is the combination of its size and experience on the market that leaves them to be one of the preferred business partners in Denmark and in the rest of the world.
IBM Denmark like most companies believes it is...
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