Nintendo is a company that develops gaming devices and software. The company has developed the Nintendo Switch that aims to surpass competing brands such as PS4 in the market. The development and implementation of a marketing strategy is critical to the realization of the company’s market leadership goals. A comprehensive marketing plan must be developed to ensure that the strategy is able to produce results that are in line with organizational goals. The unique features of the Nintendo Switch, accessibility in the market and customer support services are among the key advantages that will enhance the success of the marketing plan.
Nintendo business portfolio comprises video games and industry standard technologies. The “business units have unique demands and expectations of quality. Therefore, there is quality in each of these business units can be defined by key aspects of the business” (Dassanayake 2017). The company aims to make extensive product change that will lead to the development of unique and integrated products that meets specific needs of various clients such as those embodied in the Nintendo Switch.
Nintendo defines quality as providing the company’s customers with services and products that “meet customer and company expectations” (Cohen, 2005). The company is progressively innovating and developing its products to compete with other plays in the industry such Microsoft’s X-box and PS3. The gaming industry is a challenging one since the company must face long lead times between contracts. The industry has three types of customers that including hardware suppliers, resellers, and system integrators.
Manufacturing quality which is defined as the integrity of the manufacturing process and the assurance that all components involved in the process meet stipulated standards. Program management quality which is defined as the planning, organizing and controlling of pre-defined deliverables and the respective needs to derive the desired and expected outcomes of the various programs. Service quality which is defined as the provision of services that are in line with set standards and expectations with the aim of satisfying the customer’s needs (Fu and Zou, 2011). Software quality which is defined as the development of unique software products that are tailored to the needs of customers and can meet, satisfy and surpass the customers’ expectations. Systems quality which is defined as the development of systems such as defense systems that can anticipate current and future needs of the customer and to satisfy those needs as per the customer’s expectations (Cohen, 2005).
The responsibility for quality at Nintendo is bestowed on quality assurance and quality improvement professionals. These are primarily managers, analysts and engineers. Managers are responsible for various functions of the company including human resources and critical business aspects of the company such as software development, manufacturing, program management, research and development of key products among others. Managers are responsible for ensuring that each function under their purview adheres to organizational and industry standards. They include the developing and implementing strategies that seek to improve the respective functions under their purview (Singh, 2004). Analysts are responsible for quality since they must evaluate and analyze each product to ensure that it meets all expected standards and quality measures.
It ensures that customers are not sold defective or substandard products that do not meet their requirements. Meanwhile, engineers are responsible for quality through designing, developing and testing the company’s products to ensure that they meet expectations. In addition, engineers ensure that customers are provided with products that are efficient, secure and functional to the customer’s and company’s satisfaction. Significantly, each employee at Nintendo is responsible for quality since each task contributes to the final product. Therefore, each employee of Nintendo has the responsibility of ensuring that their respective jobs adhere to quality standards and continuously seek ways of improving such jobs in accordance with established standards.
The customer objectives for the company is the creation of awareness for the significance of Nintendo products, stimulate the client’s interest and create new demand for the company’s offering. Collaborator objectives will include the creation of awareness of the benefits that accrue to them from the creation of Nintendo products. The strategy will include training and motivation of collaborators such as game developers to ensure that they invest time and resource in making high-quality products.
Internal goals for the company will entail acceleration technology and product innovations towards the development of top-tier simulation systems for gaming. Nintendo intends to streamline business operations with key stakeholders including those engaged in its supply-chain management with the aim of improving product quality, increase capacity and minimise production costs.
Competitive objectives will aim towards further differentiation of game offering and experiences from competitors such as PS3. The company will invest in research and development to ensure that it delivers highly innovative products that will create a barrier to entry for other competitors. Also, patent applications will be made to safeguard intellectual property. Non-disclosure policies will be created and implemented to ensure that employees, third parties, and other vested stakeholders do no share company secrets under trade secret and copyright laws. The implementation of such policies will ensure that Nintendo is protected against theft of trade secrets and espionage
The organization’s market strategy focused on the market that it serves through the creation of support for reseller market, broaden system integrator business and develop a comprehensive market mix. The support for reseller market will focus on international business development, the creation of product feature roadmap and dates (Dahlen, Fredrick, and Terry, 2010). The product mix will aim at the creation of price points for various components of existing products.
The target market integrates various elements that must be taken into consideration including customers, collaborators, competitors, company, and context. The market comprises of device production and game services.
The firm is currently targeting individuals in the younger population demographic that need new and unique gaming experiences. The company intends to acquire over 80% of the market share through the development of games that address current environmental dynamics that must be addressed by personnel in real life situations.
Nintendo collaborates with game developers and computer manufacturers. The collaborators contribute towards the development of strategic systems that the company needs for its business operations. Game developers contribute to the company’s success through creation and testing of simulation games whereas the computer manufacturers contribute by building needed components for building Nintendo devices.
The company’s competitors include companies that make and sell game software and hardware for use such as PS3. Some of the competitors develop similar products while others have a vast portfolio that includes the development of computer systems and equipment. Though Nintendo focuses on the creation of game technologies, it is yet to diversify its portfolio to include advanced gaming systems such as computers.
Nintendo is a game development company that focuses on the creation of products and services for the gaming market. The company aims to develop “low-cost commercial off the shelf game devices” that gives diverse customers an opportunity to experience realistic and novel games at affordable costs (Dassanayake 2017).
The development of the marketing plan takes into consideration standard practices and procedures that do not violate industry ethics. The company ensures that employees are confined by ethical standards of practice to prevent exploitation of customers or misconduct that may impair the company’s image to the public and the realization of its core goals. Adherence to ethical practices ensures that the company’s products such as the Nintendo Switch are not linked to controversies that may have an adverse impact on the strategic market planning.
The examination of the macro-environment assists in ascertaining the organization’s position and performance in the market. A PESTLE analysis measures the business environment with the aim of determining whether it is ideal and viable for the company to establish its operations (Blythe and Zimmerman, 2005). A consideration of politics, social, economic, technological and legal factors is essential to ensure that the business is not placed at a disadvantage or exposed to an environment that compromises its competitiveness. The expansion of Nintendo business operations requires an assessment of the external environment to determine optimal marketing strategies applicable that will enhance its competitive advantage (Kleindl, 2006).
The political environment is primarily influenced and controlled by policies that determine whether it is viable for the company to expand or create new business operations. Nintendo develops considerably sensitive products especially those that are used for gaming; therefore, they are governed by policies that expect discretion and subject to political supervision.
Companies that trade in-game products such as Nintendo are affected by domestic politics since they often influence business operations (Blythe and Zimmerman, 2005). Since the political environment is subject to changes, policies often adapt to such changes; therefore, demand and supply of gaming related products such as those provided by Nintendo is dynamic.
The economic environment is largely influenced by the ability of targeted organizations to spend on the acquisition of gaming simulations. Most organizations are influenced by traditional economic forces influenced by demand and supply of products in the market. Therefore, Nintendo must examine the economic environment in the context of the industry within which it operates.
When there is a high economic performance, a significant part of the gross domestic product is adequate to sustain spending. In such situations, companies such as Nintendo have a better opportunity of offering their services and products to the customers on a broader scale (Blythe and Zimmerman, 2005). However, since the global economic crisis, budgetary allocations for spending have been reduced due to the dismal performance of the economy.
The social environment for Nintendo is mostly influenced by the varying views and perceptions of the role of gaming devices. Nintendo develops systems and programs that simulate real-life issues that affect communities such as social and civil strife and rescue missions in the event of disasters.
Technology innovations and developments have contributed towards advances in VR AR simulations. Nintendo can develop more life-like simulations that integrate more variables and scenarios. Innovations and developments in technology are driven by the need to remain a market leader in the creation of gaming and simulation software solutions that are unparalleled in the industry. Nintendo has invested in research and development to ensure that new technologies are created to address the dynamic changes in the business environment of its key.
Nintendo develops systems and programs to improve the accuracy of operations. The gaming environment is often influenced by a myriad of factors including entry of other competitors such as PS4 in providing gaming solutions. In the Event that Nintendo remains the sole provider of gaming devices, consumer spending would increase significantly for the benefit of the company; however, the entry and joint cooperation among industry players towards the provision of enhanced gaming solutions; budget spending for an individual would be reduced significantly (Blythe and Zimmerman, 2005).
The gaming industry is highly regulated and controlled by national and international laws, regulations and treaties. Therefore, the company must operate with a legal and regulatory framework that has been established to control and manage gaming activities. Nintendo must have in-depth knowledge regarding the particulars of the policy since it prescribes the terms within which government agencies purchase products and services. The policy provides a comprehensive description of “payment, specifications, and solicitation of proposals and bids” (Dassanayake 2017). Firms such as Nintendo are required to comply with regulations that govern gaming related products and services.
Tactics -Marketing Mix strategies
Nintendo offers products and services that are based on Commercial off the Shelf (COTS) technologies that integrate a combination of new “video game and industry standard technologies” (Dassanayake 2017). The integration facilitates a product portfolio that is flexible, imbued with powerful features and is compatible with various other industry standard solutions. The company develops component-based simulation software that supports up to five modules. Considering the diverse needs of customers, the company offers customized gaming and simulation solutions that meet the specific needs of each client.
Nintendo creates technologies that target the gaming industry; therefore, the products are designed and developed for the gaming market. Since different clients have diverse needs for such products, the company ensures that it develops systems that can be tailored or modified to meet the unique needs of each client. The diversification strategy aims at ensuring that the company can address the needs of the differential customer base (Gilligan and Richard, 2003).
The diversification strategy will allow the company to access a broader customer base through addressing diverse needs for simulation technologies especially in industries such as aviation (Lamb, 2012). Furthermore, the company ensures that its products adhere to security protocols provided by the legal and regulatory framework with the aim of protecting and safeguarding the interests of its customers. Key product strategies such as placement are critical especially in conventions where significant players in the gaming and systems development sectors come together to showcase different products. The company ensures that it demonstrates the dynamics and unique features of its gaming systems to potential clients. A well-delivered demonstration and sampling of products make it possible for the company to increase its customer base in a tightly competitive market.
Nintendo recognizes that price is among the significant factors that influence buyer behavior and a critical marketing tool for the company (Gray, 2000). Prices are determined competitively to ensure that the customer gets value for money and making sure that prices are at par with industry standards. However, in situations where the client requires tailored simulation systems that are unique to their needs, the price is subject to negotiation with the client. The pricing strategy aims to ensure that customers are given the best quotations that meet their specific needs (Lamb, 2012). Nintendo offers competitive pricing that aims to attract both local and international players. Therefore, the customer base is expected to increase from its current share increasing revenues.
The firm recognizes that different customers have different needs for gaming technologies. Therefore, products and services are developed bearing in mind such differences and with the aim of ensuring that each client irrespective of size or need can access products that meet their needs.
The strategic placement of products is critical towards attracting more customers (Lamb, 2012). The company aims to ensure that its products are strategically placed on the market where it can be viewed and sampled by interested customers. Placement is a critical strategy for Nintendo since it will allow potential customers to be aware of the product and where it can be acquired. The company has expanded its market through cultivation and cooperation with new clients in the local and international markets. Significantly, the company has strategically positioned its products to ensure that they have a higher competitive advantage over other competing brands. The placement strategy is further strengthened through the deployment of products tailored for designated markets; therefore, ensuring that showcased products are not out of place and are ideal for the target market (Lamb, 2012).
Product placement takes advantage of demonstrations that take place at customer sites such as game conventions. In some cases, a reseller has a dedicated demo room where the simulations can be showcased to potential customers. Trade shows can also be strategic placement locations especially those that relate to gaming technologies.
Timely distribution of products is among the factors that have been taken into consideration in ensuring that product placement continues without interruptions. The placement strategy is accompanied by a vigorous marketing campaign that emphasizes on crucial technological features and innovations of its products (Kemmer and Torsten, 2012).
The promotion strategy aims to ensure that customers are aware of the product and its unique features (Lamb, 2012). Nintendo promotes its products through direct and indirect methods. The direct methods entail visiting potential clients with the aim of demonstrating the functions and performance of its simulation products. The direct promotion method aims at giving potential customers a first-hand experience of the capabilities of its products. The indirect promotion methods include marketing and advertising techniques that demonstrate specific features of the products. As a technology-based company, Nintendo emphasizes the security and privacy aspects of its products while guaranteeing a life-like experience to product users.
Implementation of the marketing plan entails the criteria within which Nintendo utilizes, develops and amalgamates control systems, structures and organizational culture towards the attainment of marketing goals and objectives (Bradley, 2005). The primary aim of the marketing plan is to increase the organization’s competitive advantage and improve overall output including employee and organizational performance. As such, the implementation of the marketing plan is achieved through strategic phases that include the allocation of resources to essential services, development of policies, instituting programs and policies for improvement and linking results to reward structures.
The marketing plan implementation process requires a committed managerial team that is willing and capable of adhering to the standard procedures in ensuring that implementation succeeds. Checks are instituted to ensure that the implementation goals is achieved accordingly. Checks and balances ensure that the marketing plan is accurately evaluated to ascertain that the process follows the right course and is sustainable.
A critical examination of the relationships between organizational systems and processes (Comstock, Ranjay and Stephen 2010); professional and personal roles and their impact on the marketing plan implementation are essential for the comprehension and appreciation of the new strategy. The implementation process of the marketing plan involves teamwork between management and staff. The teamwork processes promote cohesion between the management and staff while promoting the development of a cooperative work environment (Blythe and Zimmerman, 2005). Effective implementation of the marketing plan will result in a productive work atmosphere where individuals and teams are fully aware of their roles. If the marketing plan is not adequately organized, it may lead to minimised efficiency and effectiveness, confusion and frustration (Hollensen, 2015).
Team leaders and individual employees assist those who are incapable of comprehending the new marketing strategy to ensure employees are familiarised with each tactic especially in demonstrating the simulation software to clients. The inclusion of trained personnel strategically ensures that the marketing plan is not impaired because some employees are not conversant with the marketing strategy. Hence, the implementation of the new marketing strategy will proceeds as planned since the staff is aware of their respective functions in the process (Chitale and Ravi, 2013).
A technology roadmap will be established, and the company will participate in trade shows. The requirements for attendance and showcasing products will be identified and met accordingly. Strategic floor space will be booked in advance to ensure that there are no last-minute complications and delays that may compromise the implementation of the marketing plan. The marketing strategy will also involve identification and selection of industry magazines. Advertisement space and runs will be booked in advance to ensure that marketing content is published according to plan.
The execution of marketing roles will ensure that employees become effective and efficient users of the new system. Therefore, a significant emphasis on training and educating the employees on critical aspects of the marketing plan is essential; hence minimising learning costs, reducing waiting times and improving service delivery (Daft, 2015). However, the implementation process should be continuous since customers cannot change over to the company’s products immediately or at the same time.
The post-implementation phase requires continuous performance assessment to ensure that the marketing plan continues to realize its set goals and objectives. Performance assessment entails a systematic and comprehensive investigation of the significance, effectiveness, and viability of distinct marketing strategies. Consequently, it involves processes that delineate report and apply judgmental and descriptive information concerning a defined strategy’s worth, feasibility, and merits. The performance assessment process can be conducted during and after the implementation of the program.
Performance assessment during the implementation process is conducted on phase to phase basis with the aim of ensuring that each completed level meets the required standards. On the other hand, performance assessment after the implementation of the marketing plan entails the evaluation of the entire strategy. The process aims at ensuring that all aspects of the program function accordingly as per projected expectation. In this respect, Nintendo will establish yearly targets for each business market segment that will be assessed on a six months period. The assessment result will be compared and adjusted accordingly.
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