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Segmentation and Targeting - Research Paper Example

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Segmentation and Targeting In the current competitive environment, every business is aiming at attaining a higher competitive advantage. Segmentation and targeting is important in the achievement of this. One of the advantages of segmentation is that it enhances the levels to which a business matches its products with customer needs…
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Download file to see previous pages Starbucks coffee and Jamaica Blue Mountain coffee company are used as the bases of reference. Target markets for Starbucks coffee and Jamaica Blue Mountain coffee Starbucks coffee targets a general local market. Its initial target market was young college students, neighborhoods and social classes that would spend time with friends at their stores and gladly accept the idea of buying a $3 a cup of coffee. The initial focus included small towns, ethnic neighborhoods, highway rest shops, rural communities and even towns saturated with coffee shops. As a result of rapid growth, this target market has expanded quickly to include local buyers of all ages. On the other hand, the Jamaica Blue Mountain focuses on the export market. Its main target market is Japan though it wants to expand to include Canada. How the choice of target market influences the company's promotion and pricing A company has to consider the buying power of its market. Miller (2006) explains that customers have different disposable income and this means they are different in terms of their sensitivity to prices. Market segmentation is therefore important in determining if a company can raise its prices or not. If the company has to raise its prices, the type of target market will determine the level to which the company will raise its average prices. If the target market is very sensitive to prices, then a company could consider dropping its prices slightly so as to gain an extra market share. If it is insensitive to prices, then a slight increase for purposes of increasing profits margins will benefit since the increase will be indiscernible. According to Aaker et al (2000), the type of target market also determines promotion methods used. A company has to choose the promotion methods that will enable it to reach its target market quickly and adequately. Alternative methods include the TV, radio, billboards, direct marketing mail shot or the Internet. At the same time, the company has to consider how competitors do their promotions. They should then evaluate the efficiency of these methods and compare with those they use or intend to use. The type of target market also determines the frequency of these promotions. For example, markets that are highly competitive require frequent promotions in order to retain customer loyalty. Effects of introducing a new target market on consumer perceptions A company can introduce a new target market in a market that is already captured by its competitor. For example, Starbucks coffee can start producing brands for export to Japan, a market segment that is already captured by Jamaica Blue Mountain coffee. According to Kotler (2003) the perception here will be that the company has performed well in terms of pricing and its expansion is a sign that it is now focusing on the quality of its products and expansion of its image. As a result of this, customers will tend to associate more with the company products so as to enjoy the anticipated high quality products and form part of this international or wide region market. The influenced of economic changes on purchase trends of customers The customers will not be influenced by changes in the economy because they will have already formed a perception that the company is already working on the quality of its products. This means that at fair prices, they will be enjoying more quality products and variety as well. This situation is reinforced by the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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