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Marketing Case: Buying a Mobile Phone
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DescriptionMarketing Case: Buying a Mobile Phone
When buying the phone I used all of these sources. I knew the airtime provider was good through recommendations from colleagues. The promotional window drew my attention to the store, and encouraged me to go to talk to the sales staff to learn more, and to also examine the phone. The store gave me a number of handsets to choose from and I evaluated each one to come to my purchase decision. How did you evaluate them?
I agree with Kotler (2001) that the consumer behaviour does not stop at the buying of the product and there is post purchase behaviour. I found that even after my purchase I was evaluating my phone, and felt disappointed why? after the initial excitement had gone. The phone was not faulty and I did not have any problems.
What were the social and cultural implications of your purchase? Explain how the good or service purchased gave you pleasure, said something about who you are and/or made a statement to other people.
I wouldn’t say that buying a new mobile gave me and pleasure as buying a car would do, I saw it more as a necessity. This may be due to the widespread use of mobiles, and how it seems that they are integral to everyday life.
By buying a new mobile phone because of a small crack in the screen it could be perceived by others that I am materialistic Kilbourne (1980) argued that “people valued money and materials more” and “people constantly buy new goods rather than continuing to use or repair old goods”. This is certainly true of the example I have used of buying a mobile when I could have had it repaired. Good insight.
There are cultural and social aspects of consumption, (table 1.2). I believe that buying a phone was more consumption and identity. I want to be able to portray a vision of success and importance, and have mirrored this in my purchase of a new phone because I didn’t want people to see the outdated phone with a crack in the screen. However all three aspects described played a part in the purchasing. Campbell (1987) described how an owner of a pair of trainers dreamt they might one day run a marathon, I dream of becoming a person who can afford to buy nice things.
The inclusion of the box above doesn’t earn any marks – only applying it to your purchase can earn marks. In 1b you said the purchase gave you “initial excitement” – isn’t this an example of hedonistic behaviour?
What could the marketers of the good or service you bought learn from your experience?
Throughout the essay I have described the buying process and promotion that led me to buy the phone. One of the other major contributing factors was being able to see and hold the phone.  This is described as personal selling. The salesperson can ask numerous amounts of questions to find the right product for the customer; they can explain the terms and conditions to a promotion, where as a leaflet or in internet can not explain the parts you don’t clearly understand. Although businesses see the sales team as an expense, to consumers they are invaluable.
Brassington and Pettitt (2005) distinguished between sales promotion techniques. These are Money based, product based and merchandise based. The promotion for my purchase was product based. See the three layer product model on page 48, which could have been used here This is because it offered free minutes, free Bluetooth and memory stick. This made the phone more competitive and because of this I sacrificed what I though was an essential feature because of the additional items offered. Also by making it a one day only promotion, added a sense of urgency and feeling that I would miss out on a good deal.
I also explained how the purchase of the mobile most identified with the idea as consumption identity, and how the phone was part of a picture for social perception of how I want to be seen. The phone itself does not have games features, nor does it have removable covers. This is part of market segmentation.  Not everyone can be pleased with the same make and model of a phone, so companiey’s segregate phones to appeal to different groups of people. Consumers can get purchase blackberrys for business, or even phones that have a space for lipstick gloss. By using the right advertisement segments of the population, also known as differentiated marketing the company can attract genuine interest in the phone.
Francis Buttle (1996) stated that increased competition have made more for demanding customers, who are no longer brand loyal, and in order to keep their customers they need to be more competitive. This is certainly true, and reiterates my earlier comment on personal selling, without the customer service I received and the incentives to buy that day, I would have gone elsewhere.
In conclusion, the company would learn that the greatest asset they have, is the staff. There have been countless times when consumers have been out off by staff. In order for marketing to work you need the personneal to back up the corporate identity, and sell the brand. Well argued and good use of other course models.
Word count = 1607
Kotler, P. (1972) ‘What consumerism means for markets’, Harvard Business
Review, May–June, pp. 48–57.
Campbell, C. (1987) The Romantic Ethic and the Spirit of Modern
Consumerism, Oxford, Macmillan.
Brassington, F. and Pettitt, S. (2005) Essentials of Marketing, Harlow,
Financial Times/Prentice Hall.
Buttle, F. (1996) ‘Relationship marketing’ in Buttle, F. (ed.) Relationship
Marketing: Theory and Practice, London, Paul Chapman Publishing,
Schaefer, Anja (2006) An introduction to marketing, , Milton Keynes, Open University.
I am going to discuss task 3, and how you can protect yourself from unethical marketing. Chris described how when he uses a web site for quotes of a financial matter that he is continuously targeted for other services. Although this can be annoying for people, I think individuals are responsible for controlling this, if they do not wish to be contacted the solution is not to buy a pay as you go mobile, but to choose a different site, or phone the company and ask for your details not to be passed on.
Pat later described how a company mis-s sold a broadband service to a friend of hers (his!). This I don’t believe is unethical, more illegal. I have worked within a sales environment and although the company can advertise the up to 10mb broadband it is the consumer’s responsibility to check the small print. Sometimes there are things that are too good to be true.
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