Market Segmentation and Product Positioning
Mhd Mouafak Alomari Assignment: Market Segmentation and Product Positioning Strayer University Dr. Joel Nwagbaraocha Wednesday 04/19/2011 “My Teacher”: Introduction and identification My Teacher” is a new service that made on the concept of helping, graduate or international student in the United States to develop and improve his educational career when he feels that he is under leveled or he lacks the ability of staying on the same level of his colleagues, and have the desire to increase his GPA, by obtaining the professional help of our staff that contains expert professors and educators, The main three ways to help our customers – the students- are to conduct special private courses for the required methods in one of the company’s branches, and conduct E-classes on the website for students in other geographical areas, and helping our student to manage their time to schedule the right time to study, work and free time to take a rest. Marketing segmentation: Because students are our customers, the marketing segment will be identified depending on a combination of demographic, geographic, psychological, and behavioral segmentation, Market segments:
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Ages, economical and educational segmentation of our students will be divided to three segments: * 14-17 years old are the high school students which they are the lowest educational level and mostly they are not able to make the decision to obtain our services because their financial resource is their parents, and in these ages students are not willing to attend any classes outside their school, they prefer to practice some kind of sports a hobby outside the school times, which means that this segment is not very promising. * 18-23 years old are the undergraduate students which they are the moderate educational level and some of them have already start their professional career or internships, a part of this level of student have their own financial income and others have financial aids or financial sponsors, most of the student at this age have also a lot of time to study and they prefer to hang out or practice their hobbies outside the school time, which means that also this segment is not very promising. 24 years old and older are the graduate students which they are the highest educational level, most of them have already got involved and started their professional career and some of them are experts, the graduate students could be the segment we should focus on because they are spending a lot time during their jobs and they might need our help services when they absent many classes or they do not have the time to study, they also have a good financial resources because they have a consistent income. * International student: most of them are students who have a good economical level what allows them to come to the U. S, they completed their undergraduate degrees in their countries and they are seeking a higher and a better quality of education in the U. S because of its very good reputable colleges, international student are usually facing difficulties in two challenges: they are not used to the teaching and educational system in the U.
S and the other challenge is the language skills for the students whom their mother language is not English, this segment look very promising because of its customers are facing major difficulties any they probably will need our service and because they have a good financial resources. Target market: After the international economic crisis, finding a good job in the business field become very challenging, and people are aggressively competing to find the best working career, or even sometimes finding any job that insure a good standard of living, in order to achieve that aim, people know that the most important and required factor is the higher education they can possibly get.
Last decade, numbers of higher education student increased with a percentage of more than 100% around the world, and the demand on good education became higher than the educational market capacity, what makes the higher education extremely expensive and hard to get, and most of students work in the same time of studying, so they can pay for the tuitions, which affects their attendance and they rarely find time to study and sometimes they had to drop out of the program. Our target is those students who are facing difficulties keeping their high marks because of their jobs, and by setting low prices and trying to reach the higher number of those students “customers” we can make good profitability.
What makes this market looks promising and attractive is the large and continuously growing number of higher education students in the United States of America and specially the international students who came from all over the world and most of them have good financial resources and they are not used to the educational system in the U. S and they face major difficulties to meet the levels of the courses. All the previous factors combined with good marketing plan, advertising and promotion, hiring a good staff of expert professors and the lack of competition in the same field, make the market looks like a big potential concerning profitability.
The following table, strategically compares our market segments and shows why we did choose grades and international students to be our segments: Segment| Size| Growth| Competition| Fit| Priority| High school | 38,248,128| 5%| Big| No| No| Undergraduate| 11,132,117| 3%| Few| OK| ? | Graduates| 8,458,998| 4%| Few, weak| Yes| Yes| International| 9,522,010| 7%| Few, weak| Yes| Yes| S. W. O. T analysis : “SWOT analysis is a tool for auditing an organization and its environment. It is the first stage of planning and helps marketers to focus on key issues. SWOT stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Strengths and weaknesses are internal factors. Opportunities and threats are external factors” http://www. marketingteacher. com Strengths: Wide geographic coverage: by establishing many braches in several cities that have the largest number of universities, we will be able to attract the largest number of graduate and international students. * Strong staff: by hiring a good operational staff with an effective structuring to help the students with matters concerning registration and finding the suitable educators for the required courses, we also will hire a strong staff of good reputable professors have good experience in the educational field, that will increase our costs but it also will create a good image for the company, better quality and the efficiency of services which will help to attract a further number of students, and also there will be a good technological support staff to build and update the website and the e-colleges. Strong financial capital: which will allows us to extend our business in the future and open new branches other sides of the country or even in other potential countries, and it also will help us to increase the number of promotional campaigns when competitors start to appear. * Online courses: the cost of online courses will be lower than attending in the branches which means less profits for one students, but on the other side it will attract students from all over the states where we do not have branches yet, and will give us a great chance to conduct a statistical study to discover what states are most potential to open new branches. * Strong promotion: the strong capital will allows to increase the advertising frequency and create a good image and reputation, that will leads to reach and attract more customers. Our services are strongly differentiated from competitors: most of the universities and colleges have facilities to help students to get anything they missed, but these methods are general and not specified for each student and his needs and relating to his level, our service is special concerning helping each student depending on his situation and his needs and to improve his skills and solve his problems and weaknesses. * Superior technological skills: the technical staff will be required to design a “super easy to use” website with a huge e-library, and educators will be required to use visual and sounds tools to increase the clarity of explanation to students. * Good customer service capability: each student will have a dedicated admission officer to help him with any issue or problem he might face, and to prepare and schedule course appointments that suite the student. Weaknesses: Starting with low profitability: the main concept of our project is totally new in the market which has the advantage of no competitors, but it also has a disadvantage that we there is no real previous experience and the targeted market has no knowledge yet about our service which means that the number of customers will be small at the beginning and with high establishing costs the profitability could be low in the first couple of years. * Weak balance sheet burdened with debts: because of the high rate of promotion and labors costs and starting with a small number of customers we might face a significant amount of debts in the first and second years balance sheets, which create a major risk that we should resolve. Opportunities: Expanding into new geographic markets: as it is mentioned previously we will start opening branches in Washington DC, Boston and New York because these states contain the larger number of universities, and according to the results of the statistical study using the online application, we have a have a good opportunity to open new branches in new states where the number of students could be promising and profitable. * Serving additional customer groups or market segment: by establishing new program for undergraduates students after becoming well known in the market. * Extend the business to other countries: the United States has one of the largest number of universities, but there is also a great number in Canada and United Kingdom, and with good reputation and advertising we can extend our business and open new branches in other countries. * Entering into alliances to extend the firm’s coverage: by making agreements with well known universities to attract its students. The lack of competition; since the concept of our project is totally new, we will not face any competition in the first operating period, which is a good chance to win the biggest shares of the market before competition start to appear. Threats: * Likely entry of potent new competitors: it is strongly expected that after achieving good profitability, new competitors will appear and they will try to gain the market shares, and we could face a strong and aggressive competition. * Increasing intensity of competition may squeeze profit margins: competitors will try aggressively to attract our customers and get our shares of the market, which could lead to decrease our profits. Restrictive legalization against international students: American government is continuously fighting the illegal immigration, and in order to achieve that, the conditions for international students to get the permission to come to the U. S are becoming more strict every year, which may lead to decrease the number of international students. Positioning: To set the right position for our product in the market we have to match our marketing message, with the needs, desires, feelings, and beliefs of our particular type of customer that we have to know to be able to offer services better than anybody else, we have to make our service “visible” as the kind of business this individual would naturally be attracted to.
As being the first company in the “supporting educational career” business field, we will try to make that as a part our position in the market, and we will try to be recognized always as “the first” by using this term in our advertising campaigns when the competition increased. Also being “the first” will allow us to win the biggest shares of the market before the competition starts, and by attracting the highest number of customers it will give us the opportunity to make more profit and decrease our prices to compete with the future competitors, and by hiring a good and well known staff of professors and educator, and good customer services, we will insure the best education quality and to satisfy our customers’ needs in an efficient way. Our position as we aim to be, is the first, the best quality, and the best rice, and this combination will insure that we will be the leader in the market, and we will easily stave off any potential competition, to deliver this image to our market segments we have to conduct extensive promotional and advertising campaign to reach the highest number of customers, and insure that what we offer in our advertisement will match what they will get when they come by insuring the good customer service and the high educational quality, and that what will give us the ability to control the word of mouth and create a good reputation References: * http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Higher_education_in_the_United_States * By Michel Wedel and Wagner A. Kamakura (Dec 31, 2000) Market Segmentation: Conceptual and Methodological Foundations. * By James H. Myers (Jul 1, 1996) Segmentation & Positioning for Strategic Marketing Decisions * http://www. davetalks. com/articles/syndicated/product-positioning-differentiation-tips. htm