As it has been already mentioned, King Paul Playstars Limited was founded by three South African entrepreneurs. Paul and James are both holders of master's degree in marketing. Initially the first had worked as a marketing manager for South Africa's Airways for seven years before resigning to a private business. James is still a marketing manager working for National Coca-Cola Limited in South Africa. He is a graduate of the Oxford University with the first-class honors in software development. He is the founder and owner of famous South African Software Developers Limited. The three entrepreneurs came together to collaborate and finance John's idea of starting the gaming business named King Paul Playstars. It reflects partners' passion for the computer world, as well as moneymaking. Company's genuine computer gaming systems are developed by a pool of computer wizards led by John. There are many outlet shops, which are concentrated in big cities in South Africa and others in small towns targeting every available computer game player. The company has a large number of customers from seven to thirty years old. Last year it saw an increase in sales by four times. It called for developing more gaming systems. King Paul started with the first one called Kid Motor. The firm sold about five million units. Then the developers came up with Land Combat 1 and sold six million units. It means that the company has the potential to grow to greater heights. It has plans to expand its sales to international markets in East, West and Central Africa. Most of its target markets are developing countries. However, the world is developing new technologies, and this means that these are unexploited markets. King Paul is a company, which believes in financial giving to the community. The firm has been able to finance programs of conservation. However, it is interested in establishing its own environmental programs.
Strengths and Weaknesses of the Company
King Paul Playstars has a number of strengths, which help it overcome competitors in the industry. The first key strength is the company's ability to produce quality products exceeding expectations of competitors and customers. Its image is recognized by consumers across the country. The second strength is the company's involvement in giving back to the community. It makes consumers feel that King Paul Playstars is doing something in return, and they feel the need to be associated with it. It gives the firm competitive advantage in the industry. The third strength is reliability. Retailers have trusted the company because of the production of quality products within the time span required to meet all orders. The intentions of this firm are to build the outlined strengths through spirited marketing tactics, as well as to improve distribution efficiency. Through the formation of strong customer, supplier and retailers relationships, King Paul believes that it will maintain competitive advantage over its rivals. The latter are all foreign firms. One more strength of the company lies in having experts in the information technology field. They have great knowledge in computer game development. The opportunity, which exists in the international unexploited market in the African continent, is what the company plans to utilize to boost its sales. King Paul Playstars has threats as well. They are found in its financial base. Due to it being a new two years old company, the demand for its products is growing so fast that it requires high technology experts and technicians, which are very expensive to compensate. There are also ready plans to expand the business to international markets. It calls for extra funding. The company has also to do advertising and sales promotion to stay ahead of competitors. It is very expensive, presenting a threat for the firm.
The first objective of King Paul is to acquire financing in order to expand, create other product lines, and to increase distribution. The reason behind this is to ensure that the company can meet customer expectations and demand patterns. The demand for computer gaming systems is growing all over Africa, and the buying ability of consumers is commendable. The number of buyers is also growing day by day as technology spreads across the continent. The company plans to increase its yearly revenue by fifty percent. This essential part of the business will cover international markets in Africa. King Paul plans to donate one hundred South African rands every year to programs of environmental protection. Another objective is to expand internationally and take advantage of the growing technology in developing countries in East, West and Central African countries. It also has the objective of creating an effective Internet site for online selling and maintaining strong relationships with retailers. The last objective the company has is developing its own programs for conserving the environment and helping the community raise money and buy open space. Secondary research has been conducted through analyzing the available research reports. All of them have a common denominator, namely a wide market of computer gaming systems, which has not been exploited in the African continent. The latter has a big potential, and available companies in the industry have not met fifty percent of the demand yet. According to the reports, the market segment includes schoolchildren, teens, and young adults (Burton, Block, Lovelace, & Sze, 2013). It means that King Paul Playstars has a high chance of becoming a multibillion-dollar business within the next five years.
The success of the business, which mainly operates for promoting and the attainment of high benefits, is reliant on the organization and the founding of complete products and amenities that are being provided. For the venture to be capable of competing and surviving in the modest markets, it has to become very successful. Constant innovation and the product line development is what can help make it very successful, which could lead to the constant increase in the clientele numbers (Keller 2003). Close competitors have a great advantage since their businesses have been in the business for quite a while, which makes the venture be disadvantaged.
Porter's Five Forces Analysis declares that, in the software industry, the competition is very tough and intense, and there is no attraction for other potential entrance in the market (Wilson 2006).
a) Threat of Substitute Products (HIGH)
The threat of substitute products from competitors is very high because it is still a new brand in the business, and it has not established its own loyal customers yet. The business must provide a unique and extraordinary computer gaming systems of much higher quality than competing products.
b) Bargaining Power of Buyers (HIGH)
The bargaining power of the buyers in the Computer and software business of the country is very high since the buyers can easily make decisions as to the brand that they are comfortable using, which is determined by the quality and its price (Aaker 2004). Through the availability of online shopping, the customers have become price sensitive because the Internet assists clients with complete necessary materials that they require to distinguish in making decisions on the brand they want to consume. Consumers become price sensitive because people prefer spending money on brands which are cheap and for a business to be successful; it has to consider the bargaining power of consumers and buyers. On-line shopping increased the bargaining power of many buyers.
c) Bargaining Power of Suppliers (LOW)
The bargaining power of suppliers usually depends on relationships which exist between the two parties. It affects prices, quality and delivery times when ordering products in large amounts. As it is a new brand in the computer and software, it means that it has to be open to suppliers' suggestions. Otherwise, they can choose another company to work with; their bargaining power is very high, and the business may end up losing our supplier.
d) Threat of New Entrants (HIGH)
The threat of new entrants into the market is high in the business as this industry is rapidly developing, and there are numerous incoming enterprises venturing into the business (Keller 2003). There are new designers who are appearing each year. Consequently, the business is facing a challenge since it is new in this production branch, and it may consume a lot of time to get a strong position and become one of the best designers in the business.
e) Intensity of Rivalry (HIGH)
In the software industry, the rivalry is very high because of the existence of intense competition. This intense rivalry causes a slowdown in the business through the intensification of the competition levels and also leads to the product lifecycle shortening (Colander 2004).
Product. King Paul Playstars presents fancy and luxurious products for satisfaction of all consumers' needs and profitability of the business. Therefore, the prosperity of the business depends on the quality product.
Price. King Paul Playstars offers a wide variety of computer gaming systems, and it intends to satisfy all customers' needs. The values are moderate and differ according to their necessities. There are essential products, which are relatively cheap. Meanwhile, King Paul Playstars produces gaming systems clients with high income, as well.
Place. With online shopping, customers of King Paul Playstars are able to get all the desired goods that would be delivered to their homes or even to their door steps straight from the store. Customers can obtain all the information regarding the product that they might need to purchase from official websites of the King Paul Playstars and the stores. They have the opportunity to research about entire delivery fees and the distribution time.
Distribution Channels. King Paul Playstars products will be distributed by two channels: online (web-site) and offline (distributor, department store in South Africa with 72% of sales). When the products leave the manufacturer, they are directed to the King Paul office where personnel give retail price for pieces, and then products are delivered to the department store. When customer buys a product online, the price stays the same as in the store. A customer can get any information he/she needs. The website will be secured, and the buyers will be able to pay with credit card (Visa and Master Card) without a risk.
Promotion. Promotion in King Paul Playstars is one of the key elements in the marketing program of the company since it is able to communicate all the marketing strategy decisions. These promotions can be done with the use of advertisement on different Media to create brand awareness among its loyal customers. The promotion mixes elements, which are mainly used by King Paul Playstars, including personal selling, publicity and direct marketing, sales promotion and advertising.
Price list. Price Policy is related straight away to King Paul Playstars positioning. The pricing strategy of King Paul Playstars is price skimming. By charging high prices, the company is planning to make a high-quality picture for products and its appropriateness because customers are not highly price sensitive. Average mark up for the product will be added to the cost price. It varies on software that was utilized for the gaming system and speed of the game.
The selling strategy will be very simple and will satisfy all customers. One of the selling strategy tools is the developing of product awareness among clients and their families with high and middle income. It is believed that when a customer leaves the shop satisfied, he/she will bring a new customer, and this will broadcast the business' name to the public in support of the products' quality.
The main goals in the selling strategy of King Paul Playstars are to attain full growth potential, acquire new customers and retain the old and existing customers. The business will use some advertising campaigns through the Internet and the media.
The selling strategy, which King Paul Playstars will use, will include the following:
- Punch Cards: After buying the 5 computer gaming systems in the business, the customer will get a 50% bonus on the next 3 systems that he/she will purchase. This method of rewarding will show appreciation for choosing a business. Moreover, it may help to bring new customers.
- Prioritizing Customers Experiences: if a customer is not satisfied with the shopping experience, no doubt, the customer will not visit such business again. All the employees in King Paul Playstars are well trained in customer service so as to be capable of handling entirely the predicaments that can occur. They will try to create a positive impression from the country's shopping. As a result, the customer might want to come back to the boutique again.
- Special Bonus Programs: a bonus program will increase the number of customers through its special bonus program. This is where a customer who purchases more than 5 systems will be awarded a 10% bonus on the total cost of systems he/she bought. This will increase the purchasing power of consumers. Consumers will be motivated to buy computer gaming systems from our store.
The strategies are the tools which are used for achieving the goals. King Paul Playstars will evaluate the suitability of company's sales through two strategies: the replacement strategy, which would determine if computer gaming systems are suitable for direct sale, and the complementary approach, which could help to determine if systems are unsuitable for direct sale. This would lead to the market need to analyse its market target through market segmentation where King Paul Playstars has identified the customers with middle and high income in the target group. Therefore, the business will be able to provide different products according to the needs of all groups to enhance customer satisfaction and increase the direct sales of the business.
These business segments in King Paul Playstars will be analysed for the purpose of determining the market value of the business. The future projections of the future market share between the segments, all the not achieved requirements - among the segments, and the market shares among the close competitors of the business. The online customer segmentation will enable the company to move to greater heights because it will ensure better customer satisfaction. Moreover, there will be a possibility to get acquainted with the competitors, how their needs are changing, how the shop can target the market segments, how it will be able to increase its value, and how it will be able to come first through market positioning. This can influence the customer and create a positive perception of the offered products in the business.
There would be strategies aimed at focusing new marketing communications since the business has to communicate effectively with all its customers so as to be capable of getting as numerous customers as probable. This information may be completed through the usage of the current digital and social media, which includes the use of websites, mobile commerce and TV, among other new digital technologies.
The aims of utilizing the social media in marketing are that social media is a relatively low investment with high return medium of interactive information. There are many advantages why an organization can use social media:
a) Brand Awareness: this is mostly done using the social websites.
b) Targeted and Niche Marketing: the brand marketers in King Paul Playstars can 'listen' to what their customers are saying, understand their needs and needs of the group of customers with similar requirements. They will target them through the social media websites.
c) Monitor Customer Feedback: the social media are great new avenue for getting customer feedback about a product. The positive response from customers improves the product image, and the adverse feedback may be instantly responded by giving the brand a 'responsible' and 'communicable' image (Finlay 2000).
Marketing Goals and Marketing Mix
The marketing mix for King Paul Playstars is not complicated. The product strategy of the company is clear. Within the next five years, it plans to develop at least two computer gaming systems annually. They will be created after research to get to know what customers say or expect to buy. It will enable the company to offer them what they need. The firm also wants to offer a package of an additional existing computer game if customers buy a new one as a way of promoting sales. The marketing mix has a distribution strategy. According to it, the company is currently creating a website, where there will be an online buying option. Those customers who cannot get to distribution centers will simply log in and buy a computer gaming system in the comfort of their homes. The company is also improving its distribution by establishing more retail shops and using the existing retailers. In the next five years, King Paul Playstars will reach almost all buyers in the selected domestic and international markets. The company's goals include covering two countries in the international market effectively within the next five years. It will be done through the application of the marketing mix of the product strategy and product distribution. It will ensure that the target market needs are met, and the firm makes substantial profits within the same period. Another goal is to be the best company in the industry in this continent within the next five years. It will be achieved through efficient distribution, especially by the use of the online selling technique.
Key Methods of Marketing Mix Implementation
The implementation of the marketing mix will follow agreed methods. Its elements will be applied to see the company success both locally and internationally. Products, namely computer gaming systems, will be designed to meet the quality, which customers expect to get. The price strategy is designed to ensure that units are affordable. The company has worked out a price strategy to get small profit per unit, but make more sales, maximizing economies of scale. The promotion element is a very important factor to be considered. The company will put a lot of effort into promotion in order to create awareness in the target market. Promotion will be done by professionals in the marketing department of the company (First, 2009). The fourth P of the marketing mix, namely place, will be put into effect through availing company products at the right place or point of purchase. Online selling will be part of this element to see that consumers are able access games easily, and this will lead to an increase in sales. The company will focus on the target market by applying these elements, which will attract more consumers in the growing market. It will make King Paul Playstars soar to great heights. In conclusion, King Paul Playstars is a company which is expecting to keep a constant growth rate to make high returns through continued customer satisfaction. The management is putting the maximum possible effort to make the firm a pace setter in the industry.