The purpose of my speech is to inform you about the four different stages of the product life cycle in the business world. Included in my speech is an example of a product going through the cycle. My example is the Apple iPod. The first stage of the product life cycle is the introduction. In the introduction stage, a company first looks to build product awareness for the specific product that is going on the market. During this stage the cost of the product is usually high, the sales volume is usually low, and there is little/no competition, demand also has to be created, and customers have to be encouraged to try/buy the product. The second stage of the product life cycle is growth. In the growth stage, sales volume increases significantly, you have more profitability and public awareness, also, competition begins to increase, and product should is priced to maximize market share. The third stage of the product life cycle is the maturity stage. In the maturity stage the products sales volume peaks, and there is an increase in competitive offerings; prices would tend to drop due to new competition. Also, the promotion of the product emphasizes the differences between other products that are like it. The fourth stage of the product life cycle is the decline stage. The company can decide to "harvest" the product which would reduce costs but they would still continue to offer the product. The company can also discontinue the product, liquidate the products remaining, or they can sell it to a different firm who is willing to continue the product. And lastly, company can also add new features to it. In reality very few products follow this cycle completely. The length of each stage varies greatly for each product. The decisions of marketers can change the stage. Not all products go through each stage as well.
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