23 November - Home

Strategic Marketing
052 430
 Instructor:
 E-mail Address:
 Office:
Michael Cooke
IC room 817
 Class hours:
 Class Location:
 Web:
Friday 13:00-16:00
IC room 806
Structure of Competitor Analysis
 Who are the competitors?
– Who are the most intense competitors?
– What are the substitute products
– Who are the potential entrants? Can they be discouraged?
– What are the barriers to entry?
 Evaluating the competitors
– Their objectives and strategies? Level of commitment? (Note how exit
from a geographic market is interpreted)
– Do they have a cost advantage or disadvantage?
– Image and positioning strategy
– Which are the most successful over time?
• Why?
• Their strengths and weaknesses?
– Customer problems, or unmet needs that competitors could exploit?
Competitor Analysis – Customer-based Approach
 Look at competitors from a customer perspective
– Product-use associations (which products do they associate with a given
use or context?)
– Customer choices (what other brands would be considered?)
 Indirect competitors
– Consider geographic regions (firms may expand)
– Customer priorities change
• The firm needs to understand positioning and new product strategies
of indirect competitors
• Customers do consider alternatives beyond current direct competitors
 At what level is the analysis conducted?
– Business unit, firm, an aggregation of businesses? Analysis may be need at all
levels at which strategies are developed.
– May need to include indirect competitors in some level of strategic analysis
Competitor Analysis - Strategic Groups
 Concept is useful for making industry analysis manageable
 Selection of strategy will often mean selecting or creating a
strategic group
 A strategic group is firms that:
1. Pursue similar competitive strategies
2. Have similar characteristics
3. Have similar assets and competencies
Specific assets and competencies often serve as mobility
A firm competing across strategic groups is often at
disadvantage (distribution channels, etc)
Potential Competitors
• Market expansion – firms operating in other geo areas
• Product expansion – firms in related product areas
• Backward integration – customers that move upstream
• Forward integration – suppliers that move downstream
• Weak competitors can become strong via M&A situations
• Retaliatory or defensive strategies in response to
perceived threats
Understanding the Competitors
Size, Growth
& Profitability
Strengths and
Image and
Exit Barriers
Objectives and
Current and
Past Strategies
and Culture
Cost Structure
Figure 3.2
© Copyright 2010 John Wiley & Sons Ltd
Figure 4.3
Understanding Competitors
Size, growth and profitability
Image and positioning
These indicate strength and successful strategy
Profitable businesses have access to capital (unless being milked)
Often have to use indirect measures to find these numbers
Competitors positioning may present opportunities to differentiate
Can use consumer research or study of competitor products, adverts, websites, actions to
determine competitor positioning
Competitor objectives, including parent company
Market share, sales growth, profitability objectives
Is the company or the parent company committed to the business? Will the parent make
resources available? Exit barriers (chapter 14)?
Has the competitor abandoned markets?
• Current and past strategies
Failed strategies are unlikely to be repeated
Pattern of new market or product moves may be predictive
• Based on line breadth, product quality, service, brand, or distribution?
• If niche or focus, what is the scope?
• If low cost is the strategy, is it achieved via scale, experience, supplier access?
• Cost structure indicates pricing strategy and staying power
Outsourcing strategy or investment in fixed assets
Sales relative to number of factories
Direct labor versus overhead (fixed costs)
• Company websites are a good source of information
Relevant Assets and Competencies
Which assets or competencies contributed business successes?
Which businesses have had chronically low performance?
Why? What assets or
competencies do they lack?
What are the customer motivations? Service? Product quality?
Which assets and competencies are industry entry or exit barriers? (Mobility barriers)
Barriers to exit exist where assets have no alternative use
Some assets and competencies are difficult or impossible to reproduce to would be entrants
Value added components? Excelling on a value added component can be an SCA for a firm.
Start examination with suppliers
End with customer use
Checklist of Strengths and Weaknesses (see McLoughlin p54)
Access to capital (operations, net short term assets,
Customer base
Figure 4.4
Key Learnings
 Competitors can be identified by customer choice (the set from which
customers select) or by clustering them into strategic groups, (firms that pursue
similar strategies and have similar assets, competencies, and other
characteristics). In either case, competitors will vary in terms of how intensely
they compete.
 Competitors should be analysed along several dimensions, including their size,
growth and profitability, image, objectives, business strategies, organisational
culture, cost structure, exit barriers, and strengths and weaknesses.
 Potential strengths and weaknesses can be identified by considering the
characteristics of successful and unsuccessful businesses, key customer
motivations, and value-added components.
 The competitive strength grid, which arrays competitors or strategic groups on
each of the relevant assets and competencies, provides a compact summary of
key strategic information.
“We often give our enemies the means for our own
P&G in China
 Entry through joint venture with a Hong Kong based multinational in 1998
 Chinese market characterized by:
– Huge disparity in income levels and consumer needs within China
– Large number of outlets for consumer goods
 Three tier consumer segment system developed
– Premium
– Middle
– Low price
 Marketing objective to promote global products as Chinese brands
R&D in Beijing
Use local ingredients
Local cost and pricing targets
Local customer research staff
• Tailor products to local traditions, local tastes, local budgets
• Different and more costly products for wealthier urban markets
Global Strategy Elements
Competitive forces in an industry
Global industry – the extent of globalization
Competitive advantage (cost, differentiation, etc)
Hyper competition (disrupting the market)
Interdependency – standardized components
Competitive Industry Structure
An element of global strategy
Michael Porter
 Industry competitors – rivalry among existing firms
 Potential entrants – note barriers to entry
– Barriers could be legislated
– Time and investment
 Bargaining power of suppliers (raw materials to
 Bargaining power of buyers (supermarket chains,
large volume operations like WalMart, government as
customer, single large company customer)
 Threats of substitutes
Competitive Industry Structure
Substitute Products or Services
 Often overlooked or underestimated by established
industry players
– HP in 2004 saw Personal Computers as a commodity
• Build cheap in high volume
• Main competitor thought to be Dell Computer of TX
• $3BB R&D under-utilized
 Substitutes can restructure entire industries
– Common in technology industries
– Always a threat in the petroleum industry
• But cost of entry for substitutes is high
• Once a substitute gains entry, costs may rapidly drop
• Pattern is to have price spikes, followed by periods of prices too low
for substitutes to thrive
– Synthetic rubber became a substitute when war cut natural
rubber supplies
Global Industry
– Those industries where a firm’s competitive position in
one country is affected by its position in other countries.
– The first question that faces managers is the extent of
globalization of their industry. Example: Foreign car
brands in many countries are made locally.
– Every industry could have global aspects. Some
academics believe consumer tastes are converging
globally, and firms drive tastes to converge.
Industry Globalization Potential
The potential globalization of an industry is determined
1. Market forces
2. Cost forces
3. Government forces
4. Competition forces
Exhibit 8-1: Industry Globalization
Copyright (c) 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Global Industry
Market Forces
Per capita income convergence
Rich consumers in emerging markets
Convergence of lifestyles and tastes
Increased international travel creates global customers
Organizations behaving as global customers (Toyota)
Growth of global and regional retail channels
– More regional successes than global
– Those that are global are adapted to regional culture (7-11)
Establishment of world brands
Global advertising
Spread of global and regional media
Revolution in communication technology*
*Revolution in Communication technology
 Much bigger and more fundamental than e-commerce alone
 Growth of worldwide secure financial settlements
– Rapid spread of ATMs from the mid-90s for example
– Ease of doing financial transactions across borders
 Rapid spread of cellular technology connected whole regions
to the outside world, from late 1990s
 Rapid decrease in the price of bandwidth late 1990s
– Large scale long distance data transfer became viable
• Fiber optic technology means very cheap prices across oceans
• Google and others have mix of local and central content
– Offshore factories and suppliers have real time access
– Distributors have real time access to retail inventory
– Medical information and other data intensive documents exchanged
real time
 Cultural diffusion via better communication
– Often thought of as spread of English
– Growing exposure and interest works in both directions
Global Strategy
Cost Forces
1. Global economies of scale and scope
2. Steep experience curve
3. Global sourcing efficiencies
4. Favorable logistics
5. Difference in country costs
6. High product development costs
– Need to spread costs onto higher volumes
– Emerging R&D centers in lower cost countries
7. Fast-changing technology
8. Shorter product life cycles
Copyright (c) 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Global Strategy
Government Forces
1. Favorable trade policies (and trading blocks)
2. Compatible technical standards
3. World Trading Regulations
4. High growth/low labor cost developing countries
5. Deregulation/privatization of industries
6. Shift to market economies in China, Russia, E. Europe
Competitive Forces
High exports and imports
Competitors from different continents and countries
Interdependent countries (components specialization)
Globalized competitors
Globalized financial markets (and company ownership)
Copyright (c) 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Global Strategy
Competitive Advantage
– Cost leadership
• Builds on economies of scale
• Learning effects (how to be more efficient)
• Long production runs (high cost to change lines)
• Amortize fixed costs over more units (R&D often fixed)
• Cost leadership can be a barrier to entry (and a trap!)
– Product differentiation
• Customers willing to pay premium price for unique products
• Can be a barrier to entry (note Brand Relevance, “own a category”)
– Niche strategy
• Focus on a highly specialized segment
• Try to achieve a dominant global position in that segment
• Pays to stay ‘under the radar’
• A overlooked niche can grow into something much bigger
– Global marketers combine cost control and product differentiation
Global Strategy
Gaining Competitive Advantage
 Firms create series of temporary advantages
– Most advantages are temporary (methods are learned)
– Firms must innovate to stay ahead (think of Brand Relevance)
– Experiment with small product introductions – some will work
 Advantages and disadvantages of being the pioneer
– Can grow quickly in absence of competitors (a reason small firms with
innovative ideas seek to go public or be bought – marketing)
– Can become the standard for a product
– But others may learn from mistakes of pioneers – first mover costs
 Competitor-focused approach
– Comparisons with competitor costs, prices, technology
– Firm might focus too intently on competitors
 Customer-focused approach (How would we describe P&G
Global Strategy
 Interdependency of modern companies
• Firms draw on outside technologies – purchase use of ideas
• Standardized components enable scale economies to suppliers
• Standardized components enable different firms to use same
• Note that many firms may cooperate for open standards
 Governments affect parts of a firm’s cost structure
– Export restraints (to protect domestic markets or for
defense purposes)
– Tariff and non-tariff barriers
Global Marketing Strategy
 Benefits of Global Marketing:
– Cost Reduction
• Standard packaging (include lower inventory)
• Consolidate multiple marketing functions
• Reduced total advertising costs
– Improved Products and Program Effectiveness (from integration of
ideas and spreading costs over larger base)
– Enhanced Customer Preference through consistent theme
– Competitive Advantage through coordinating the worldwide
organization (employee communication, intelligence gathering)
 Limits to Global Marketing:
– Globalization vs. localization (local adaptation)
• Worldwide Web has elements of both
• Languages and cultural values differ among national sites
– Global integration vs. local responsiveness
• Global companies create local subsidiaries to respond locally
• Local R&D etc
– Scale vs. sensitivity to local cultures
Degrees of Standardization of Products in World Markets
Chapter 8
Copyright (c) 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Typical Income Statement
– Net Revenue
• Less COGS (includes provision for inventory write-off)
– Gross Profit
– SG&A (mostly fixed cost in short term)
Administration (includes finance)
Sales and Marketing
Research and Development
– Net (operating) income before taxes and depreciation
• Taxes etc
– Net income
Marketing Interactions within the
 Marketing interacts with Finance, Operations, and R&D to
determine whether new products are viable from a resources
and opportunities perspective
– Financial resources (can we afford to launch?)
– Human and manufacturing hardware resources
 Marketing interacts with Finance to make forecasts and
– Top line numbers – budgeting usually begins with revenue forecasts
– Marketing expenses
 Marketing interacts with Finance, Manufacturing, and
Distribution to determine pricing and promotion strategies
(what do we need to move this month?), fine tuning of
production runs, and inventory obsolescence
R&D, Operations and Marketing Interfaces
 R&D/Operations Interface (basic R&D vs production
R&D) – design new products to use existing resources
 Manufacturing/Distribution/Marketing Interface
– Core Components Standardization in adapting to local needs
• Some cosmetic or packaging considerations might be applied in
packaging and distribution
• Some adaptation might occur only in customer perceptions
– Timing and length of factory production runs
– Cost and pricing considerations
– Inventory management
• Avoiding excess inventory through coordinating sales with production
• Getting rid of unused inventory (obsolete product might be sold in
 Marketing/R&D Interface (customers as idea sources)
Exhibit 8-5: Interfaces among R&D,
Manufacturing, and Marketing
Chapter 8
Copyright (c) 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Regionalization of Global
Marketing Strategy
 Regional strategies are cross-subsidization in pursuit of regional
production, branding, and distribution advantages.
 Issues in regionalization of global marketing strategy:
– Cross-Subsidies of Markets (competitor bases)
• Kodak ignored Japan when Fuji targeted economy segment
• Failure to counter an attack can be catastrophic
– Identification of Weak Market Segments
• Use a weak niche to expand in a foreign market
• Established players often ignore niches
– Lead Markets set standards for the world (India tractors)
– Marketing Strategies for Emerging Markets
• Local companies identify their relative strengths
• Local businesses closer to customers, part of local culture
Competitive Analysis
 SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and
Threats) Analysis (See Exhibit 8-6.)
– A SWOT analysis divides the information into two main
categories: internal and external factors.
– Based on SWOT analysis, marketing executives can
construct alternative strategies.
– The aim of any SWOT analysis should be to isolate the key
issues that will be important to the future of the firm and that
will be addressed by subsequent marketing strategy.
Copyright (c) 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Exhibit 8-6: SWOT Analysis
Chapter 8
Copyright (c) 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.