The business level strategies are analyzed to interpret the current market position of Blackberry Playbook. There are multiple competitors of the product including Apple, Amazon and Google. The large corporations have created a fierce competition in technology industry especially the tablet devices market. The increased technology advancements are influential in the business and as a result the business has to adopt fast paced strategies to cater its market. The product is also named as one of the best professional computing device as increased processor capacity and portability are among key features of the product.
The business history, market value, financial position, main products, and operations are discussed to introduce the corporation. The target customers, product values, various strategies are also critically evaluated in the relevant sections. The SWOT analysis is performed to assess the product's strength, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. The delayed evaluation and analysis regarding the product, pricing, promotion, and distribution strategies of the business in terms of Blackberry Playbook is presented in the respective section. The sections below are focused to critically evaluate the marketing strategy and key elements of marketing function in detail.
Research IN Motion (RIM) is the real name of Blackberry Corporation. The devices manufactured by the company are categorized as PDA. The company has played a noteworthy role in altering the course of mobile phones industry. RIM was incorporated in 1984. The business was collaborating with Ericson as a strategic partner in various developments. The company launched their BlackBerry products and provided an innovative solution for communications in 1999. It is also remarked as the year of their own operations regarding products manufacturer and distributor.
The business assets, income, and long terms investments are analyzed to assess the market value of the company. It also includes assessment of property and goodwill. Revenues of the company are totaled as $18.4 billion in 2012. Blackberrygenerated net income of $1.2 billion and $2.22 per share. Total assets of the business are $13,731 as at March 2012. An increase in the assets in observed as in 2011 the assets were at $12,875(Form 40-F, 2012). The business is rebranding itself to highlight its presence in the financial markets with changes in name at NASDQ ticker as BBERY and Toronto Stock Exchange as TSX: BB. The rebranding campaign is effective since 4th Feb, 2013 (Research In Motion, 2013).
RIM is mainly dealing in smartphones, tablets, software, and hardware for mobile devices. The product line of business includes limited number of products. It is also a trend setter in mobile industry hence relishes a good standing for innovating solutions for communications. The BlackBerry products include BlackBerry Playbook Tablet, BlackBerry Smartphone, and software for businesses and accessories. The limited products line is easy to handle and lead through the technology trends (Research In Motion, 2013).
The registered headquarters of business are situated in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. It also has offices in North America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific. The company operates globally through its corporate office in Canada and regional offices in various strategic locations in the world. The geographic areas segmentation includes Africa, Asia-Pacific, Caribbean, Europe, Latin America, Middle East, and North America. The company is operating in 150 countries. The global operations have enabled them to distribute their products as an international manufacturer and distributor (Research In Motion, 2013).
The headquarter facilities in Waterloo Canada are owned. However a number of owned and leased office facilities throughout Canada are also operational. United States offices are comprised of five large campus style offices in Dallas and Texas. The sales offices are also present in U.S.. The company caters South American market from Uruguay, Mexico, and Brazil. Asia-pacific regional offices are present in Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore and South Korea. The company also operates through Germany and United Kingdom for its European operations (Form 40-F, 2012).
Product: Blackberry Playbook:
The product of RIM belongs to tablet family of electronic and mobile computing devices. The design, display, CPU, and Operating system features of the product are described below. The weight of the product is nearly one pound. Portability of the product is increased through 7 inches screen display. Dual core 1 GHz TI OMAP processor is used to manufacture the product. The internal storage of Blackberry Playbook has several options ranging from 16 GB up to 64 GB. The product's operating system is Blackberry OS which is developed through continuous R&D. The developer of the system is a reliable business partner of the firm named as QNX (Research in Motion, 2013).
The customers are one of the key stakeholders in business. It is important to define a clearly identified target market prior to manufacture and market products. The company has a long standing reputation in transforming various technology trends especially in mobile and communications industry. The business reputation and confined portfolio of mobile computing devices enables the business to clearly define and segment its target markets. The section below provide a detailed understanding of the target markets, customers of business, and key features of the target market for Blackberry Playbook. The correct identification and targeting of the market is essential to generate desired number of sales.
The target market of the product can be broadly defined tablet computing devices market in terms of its overall similarity. However the major target market is defined in terms of its portability, office usage, middle to high income group customers. The customers also belong to young to middle aged students, business executives, and professionals. The playbook is also designed to enhance processing capabilities in order to target corporate users and professionals.
The product is positioned to target 25 years and more age group consumers. It is also regarded as the first professional grade tablet computing device. The interconnectivity of the device with BlackBerry smartphone also allows the product to appeal for corporate and professional users. The association with Blackberry smartphone as well as mobility is major features of the target market.
Features of target market:
The key features of the target market can be defined in terms of distinct variables. These variables include the age, education, professional, status, mobility, and geographic presence. The education of the users of the target market has a common attribute regarding their age. The product is targeted at 25 up to 60 years of consumer age groups. The travelling and mobility time is also a key feature of the target market. The individuals' spending increased time outside their business and residential locations are key users of the device.
The users educated from high school up to professional levels are consumers of the product. The geographic location of the users is also a key feature to define. The residents and professionals situated in the suburban areas and travelers of highly populated locations require more time to travel to and from their business locations. Hence it is observed that the product is highly used by the above mentioned consumer markets commonly sharing features.
The product features and value is a key element in setting the stage for its marketing and sales projections. The business professionals heavily rely on research and developments of the products which carry a three tier product value system for their customers. The basic layer is the core value of the product. It is the essential value that a product provides to its customers and satisfies the needs of the target market. The actual value of the product is attributed towards its perception and review of the target market. The actual value it creates among its target customers. The augmented value is described in terms of third layer holding the additional features of the product that cater the requirements of its target market.
Product core customer value:
The product core customer value is presented in terms of its usage as the first professional tablet computing device. The product is target to create value for its customers of smartphone as well as business and corporate professionals. The battery timings, display, and processing speed is the core value for the product. It is targeted to fulfill mobile computing requirements of professionals.
Actual product features:
The actual value for customers is observed in terms of its applicability as a mobile computing device for providing its customers facility to utilize the services while being out of their business and residential locations. The customer needs while traveling is fulfilled through usage of Blackberry Playbook. The product also enables the professional to perform urgent business communications functions during their time outside the office.