Module Title: Cases in Marketing
Banner Code: 07 15824
Lecturer: Inci Toral
Assignment Title: Case Study: Target the Right Market
Word Count: 1246
ID number: 1291160, 1207270, 1249898, 1228189 and 1259957
An essay Submitted to
Graduate Diploma in Business Administration Year 2, 2013
Birmingham, United Kingdom
11th, March 2013
This report explores case study of SparkPlace that was originally influenced by the case of HubSpot: Inbound Marketing and Web 2.0 (Steenburgh, 2009), an online-marketing software company. Due to the limited resources available to this company, it wants to target two available markets: small businesses with no more than 20 employees and ...view middle of the document...
This challenge could be evaluated through the critical analysis of the available marketing developments.
“On the other hand, small software companies must establish credibility as reliable suppliers when entering markets. This cannot be done without developing mutually oriented relationships with cooperative partners in target markets.” (AlajoutsijaÈrvi, 2000)
SWOT is used to analyse the ‘key’ or ‘critical’ success factors, and is one of the highest ranked techniques of strategic analysis used by firms in empirical surveys (Glaister and Falshaw, 1999). In this report, SWOT analysis is used to identify SparkPlace’s internal strengths and weaknesses as well as the opportunities and threats from the external markets while dealing with their customers which are Sam’s and Mary’s.
In this case, the rationale of using SWOT as our strategic framework is because it indicates a good balance between internal and immediate external factors. We want to emphasise on the relationship between the company and their existing customer rather than conducting a more broader analysis such as PEST, Porters Five, or Boston matrix.
In conclusion, Sams’ is a better choice for SparkPlace in short-term, because it is easy to engage in. However, they have a low profit margin and considered as a risk averse. On the other hand, for long term Marys’ is a wise choice because it has high profit margin and loyal consumers can help SparkPlace improve their product continuously and build specific advantage to keep a strong competitiveness.
Additionally, it could be suggested that SparkPlace could obtain all the opportunities of both markets since Sams’ might help them sustain initially and Marys’ can help them to improve in the development stages. However, it could be highlighted that they might have threats of limited resources such as fund, technology and workforce.
The best solution for SparkPlace would be to target both “small Sams’” and “medium Marys’” at the same time. Based on the case study, there are both advantages and limitations of these two markets. Medium Marys’ are more valuable and experienced than small Sams’ because they stay longer and are willing to pay higher monthly fees. On the other hand, small Sams’ are easier to bring on board and their cost of sales is less than $1000 compared to $5000 for medium Marys’. Therefore, Sparkplace should target both markets so that they are able to spread their risk, cost and cover all possible areas to generate high profits and build strong relationships in the future. In their earlier stages, Sparkplace could evaluate the effects of targeting both markets and subsequently select the suitable and appropriate market.
The same situation has occurred in P&G (Procter and Gamble), which is an American multinational consumer good company. When the company decided to launch laundry products, they do not know which market to target. Different groups of people...