Basics of Marketing - Kotler Philip

Maturity stage

At some point, the rate of growth in the sale of goods will begin to slow down - a stage of maturity will begin. By the time this stage is usually longer than the previous ones and poses complex tasks in the field of marketing management. Most of the goods on the market are just at the stage of maturity, and therefore, marketing management basically deals with "mature" goods.

The slowdown in sales growth means that many producers accumulate stocks of unsold goods. This leads to a sharpening of competition. Competitors are increasingly resorting to selling at discount prices and prices below the price-list. Advertising is growing, the number of preferential deals with the sphere of trade and consumers is increasing. R & D allocations are increasing to create improved product options. All this means a decline in profits. A number of the weakest competitors begin to drop out of the struggle. In the end, only firmly entrenched rivals remain in the industry.

The manager of the product should not just protect his product. The best defense is an attack. And the manager needs to constantly look for ways to modify the market, the product and the marketing mix.

MODIFICATION OF THE MARKET . The manager seeks to increase the consumption of the existing product. He is looking for new users and new market segments. At the same time, he is seeking ways to stimulate more intensive consumption of goods by existing customers. Perhaps the manager wants to reposition the product in such a way that it is attractive to a larger or faster growing market segment.

MODIFICATION OF THE GOODS . The product manager can also modify the characteristics of his product, such as the level of quality, properties or appearance to attract new users and intensify consumption.

The quality improvement strategy aims to improve the functional characteristics of the product, such as durability, reliability, speed, taste. This approach is effective when: 1) quality is amenable to improvement; 2) buyers believe the claims about quality improvement; and 3) a sufficiently large number of buyers want to improve the quality of the goods.

The strategy of improving properties is intended to give the product new properties that make it more universal, safer and more convenient. Japanese manufacturers of watches, calculators, copiers, etc., successfully implement the strategy of improving properties. For example, Sony constantly gives additional new properties to its miniaturized stereo tape recorders "Walkman".

The strategy of improving the external design is to increase the attractiveness of the goods. So, to attract buyers who need something new in appearance, car companies periodically change the external design of their models.

MODIFICATION OF THE COMPLEX OF MARKETING . Among other things, the product manager should seek to stimulate sales by modifying one or more elements of the marketing mix. You can reduce the price to attract new customers and entice customers from competitors. You can try to develop a more effective advertising campaign. You can resort to active sales promotion techniques, such as concluding preferential deals with sellers, issuing coupons that give the right to a small discount from the price, the distribution of souvenirs, the holding of contests. The firm can "take advantage of more capacious market channels, resorting, in particular, to the services of active stores, especially if these market channels are experiencing a period of growth. The firm can also offer customers new or improved services.