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Objective: (a) Identification of the competitors, their objectives, strategies, strengths and weaknesses and response profile. (b) Development of competitive strategies including the competencies to be employed and the marketing strategies to be adopted based on competitors and customer response profiles. Contents : A. Competitor Analysis 1. Understanding Competition 2. Identifying Companys Competitors 3. Determining Competitors Objectives 4. Identifying Competitors Strategies 5. Assessing Competitors Strengths and Weaknesses 6. Estimating Competitors Reactions 7. Selecting Competitors to Attack and Avoid 8. Designing a Competitive Intelligence System 9. Tools of Strategy Generation 10. Strategic Choice in Various Situations B. Competitive Strategies 1. Basic Competitive Strategies 2. Competitive Positions 3. Market Leader Strategies 4. Market Challenger Strategies 5. Market Follower Strategies 6. Market Nicher Strategies 7. Balancing Customer & Competitor Orientation

1. Strategic Market Management, Aaker, David A. 2. Strategic Marketing Management, Richard M.S. Wilson, (Viva)

a. b. c. d. Write answers in your own words as far as possible and refrain from copying from the text books/handouts. Answers of Ist Set (Part-A), IInd Set (Part-B), IIIrd Set (Part C) and Set-IV (Case Study) must be sent together. Mail the answer sheets alongwith the copy of assignments for evaluation & return. Only hand written assignments shall be accepted. 5 Questions, each question carries 1 marks. 5 Questions, each question carries 1 marks. 5 Questions, each question carries 1 marks. Confine your answers to 150 to 200 Words. Two Case Studies : 5 Marks. Each case study carries 2.5 marks.

A. First Set of Assignments: B. Second Set of Assignments: C. Third Set of Assignments: D. Forth Set of Assignments:

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1. Evaluate the concept of Strategy and explain its components and levels. Also discuss the relationship between corporate and marketing Strategies. Provide illustrative examples to support your discussion 2. Discuss the purpose of competitive analysis and explain the major steps an organization might undertake to conduct an analysis. Support your answer with example and the relevant model / framework 3. A). Discuss the implication of the advances in information technologies for improving the exercise of marketing scanning and analysis. B). Discuss that an effective strategy is one that is based upon the identification of sustainable competitive advantages. 4. Discuss how marketing environment can impact on an organization operating within an industry of your choice using examples. 5. a. Assess the difference between marketing segmentation and product differentiation b. What is the price benefit position map, and why might it be useful to strategic marketers?


Assignment-II = 5 Marks


1. Why do a strategic analysis? What are the objectives? What in your view are the three keys to making a strategic analysis helpful and important 2. Consider the automobile industry. Identify competitors to Maruti and organize them in term of their intensity of competition. Also organize them into strategic groups. What are the key success factors (KSFs) for the strategic groups? 3. a) Distinguish between key success factor and sustainable competitive advantages. b) Marketing follower strategies. 4. How can the market challenger best attack the chosen competitor and achieve its strategic objectives. ? When environment strategy needs to be implemented? 5. Discuss framework of BCG Matrix and elaborate on it usefulness for determining attractiveness and competitiveness of a firm. THIRD SET OF ASSIGNMENTS Assignment-III = 5 Marks

1. What are the factors on which Porters choice of strategy is based? Explain in detail the three generic strategies identified by Porter. 2. What is strategic vision and how does it differ from strategic opportunism? Compare strategic vision with strategic intent. Illustrate with examples. 3. Discuss briefly the strategies used by market leaders, challengers, followers and nichers in the personal computer market. 4. What are corporate social initiatives? What key considerations should be taken into consideration when they are being developed? Does corporate social responsibility create firm profits? In support provide reasoned arguments. 5. a) Distinguish between a market-centered company and a customer-centered company

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b) Strategic implications of Ansoffs growth vector matrix.


Assignment-IV = 2.5 Each Case Study

Stan runs an antiques and curios shop in Singapore. Most of his clientele are visitors who take away relics or copies as souvenirs of their visit. They want something which seems to be genuinely oriental in nature to remind them of their visit to the Far East. Stans shop is not far from the city centre in a shopping mall. It is easily accessible and many passer-by gaze at the various artifacts he has no show. Stan did a degree in England where he took computer science as his principal subject. He is a proficient programmer and an expert in both software and hardware. However, Stans first love was antiques and curios and following a five-year spell with large multi-national computer company with large offices in Kuala Lumpur after he returned with has degree from England he decided to return home to his native Singapore and develop a small business of his own specializing in antiques curios. That was six months ago and in the meantime the business has started to develop but it has not really taken off in a big way. Stan can just about make ends meet but still lives at home with his parents in their small suburban flat. Stans interest in antiques and curios goes back to his childhood when he read books that were given to him by an uncle and which contained many pictures of such items. It is a passion he shares with his girlfriend May. She helps from time to time in the shop while Stan is out looking for new item in the suburbs of Singapore or further afield in Kuala Lumpur. He also has contacts in Hong Kong and Shanghai the later being the place from where his parents originated. The suppliers in both these places regularly ship him items that he has ordered after perusing their list. The lists are sent out monthly along with photographs or sometimes sketches of the items concerned. Stan and May hope to marry in the near future but money is something of a problem and a place of their own hard to even think about. In Singapore living accommodation is at premium prices. May went to secretarial college in Singapore and has good secretarial qualifications. She worked for a bank of three years before deciding to give this up to help Stan run his business has therefore to provide incomes for both Stan and May. Questions 1. What are the businesss core competencies? Are they the same as those possessed by Stan May? 2. How can Stan develop a sustainable a sustainable competitive advantage for this business?


ECONOMIC ISSUES IN ADVERTISING Prominent economists, advertising leaders and public policymakers are divided on how well advertising performs its economics roles. Among the questions that are debated are: Is advertising a barrier to entry? Does advertising raise or lower prices?

Advertising and Barriers to Entry A barrier to entry is something that hinders a potential competitor from entering a product class and competing for sales in it. Large plant investments, lack of access to raw materials, or inability to gain retail shelf space are examples of entry barriers. With respect to advertising, the barriers to entry debate concerns the effects that advertising has on competition with a product class. The data are clear that (1) firms with higher shares of market tend also have higher shares of advertising expenditures, and (2) firms with higher profits also tend to advertise more. The question is Why? Does advertising by large firms act to keep out other, smaller firms who may have superior products? If so, advertising would be acting in an anticompetitive manner.

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It is important to note that this need not be a result of a conscious effort by a large company to act in an anticompetitive manner. For example the economics of advertising tend to work in favor of size as fixed costs of production can be spread over more exposures and volume discounts are typically available from the media. Also, for some media (especially national television), the lowest levels of money necessary to gain exposure can be quite high (for a 30 second spot on a popular show in prime time). These amounts are well within the ability of large firms to afford but may be risky for the financial health of a smaller firm. The actions of channel members and consumers might also serve to make advertising a barrier to entry by new firms. For examples since retailers are interested in giving their valuable shelf space only to brands they are confident will be quickly purchased a smaller firm may be less able to convince wholesalers and retailers that the new product will be in demand. Consumers, of course lie at the heart of this issue as a function of how receptive they are to trying new entries to the market. If consumers are only willing to buy heavily advertised brands whose name are familiar to them through advertising for example new firms will have a more difficult time in successfully offering their products. Economists who believe that advertising has these types of effects often belong to the market power school of thought. They stress advertisings persuasive aspects and believe that successful advertising often contributes to increasing industry concentration in which a few firms come to form an oligopoly to dominate production and sale. In the oral care industry for example hundreds of local and regional beer brand have gone out of business as Colgate and close-up and few other major brands have come to dominate the market. Economists who reject these effects from advertising often belong to the information school of thought. They argue that the situation is just the opposite - that advertising actually acts to ease the path of a new competitors entry into the market. They stress that advertising offers information to consumers who are free to choose whether to buy or not. If the product or service is worthwhile consumers will try it and will return for more in the future. Advertising is an efficient way of informing consumers about such new offerings and can offer handsome returns to firms that are willing to invest in it even if they have to borrow to do so. The fact that firms with higher share of market advertising more than indicates to this school that these firms are offering a product that the public value. As you may know from a course in economics, detailed answers to the questions raised in these debates require advanced quantitative analyses of the special conditions of each case. Even then, the opposing sides are likely to continue to disagree. Questions 1. Do you really think that advertising can really act as a barrier to entry for the new products in a given category? Justify your answer with a suitable example from the Indian market scenario. 2. Given the high cost of advertising how do you think the advertising majors are able to maintain market and cost leadership?

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