The differences that exist between defensive and offensive marketing strategies are both practical and rational. These strategies apply to big and small companies alike. Offensive strategies come in handy in advancing the achievement of the objectives of a business venture and in improving its market position (Porter, 2008). On the other hand, defensive strategies are necessary for protecting the market position of a company. This is achieved by protecting the segments that are already safe and maintaining a company’s brand name (Sahaf, 2008). Therefore, this paper seeks to evaluate two offensive strategies and one defensive strategy while showing why a company like Microsoft Corporation would implement them.
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The first offensive marketing strategy involves structuring the marketing department of a company through the creation of new roles that focus on a company’s marketing activities. This enables the department to develop a good corporate strategy and image (Porter, 2008). This will happen because the marketers will be able to have more interaction with the customers and develop ways through which they can improve their services to satisfy the customers’ needs. By structuring the marketing department, the creation of different tasks would imply that the recruitment of the most proficient candidates will take place. This would enable the company to attain its objectives efficiently (Sahaf, 2008). These actions provide the new employees with ample time to look into the company’s strategies. The structuring strategy also requires the marketing department to transform its relationship with other departments that they have to co-operate with when implementing the offensive strategy (Porter, 2008).
A corporation like Microsoft would have to implement this strategy to cut the time that most of its staff members spend in the implementation of short-term activities. Past studies reveal that Microsoft employees spend 80-90% of their time on tactical activities that are short-term. This issue has seen the corporation lag behind other similar corporations in terms of its long-term activities of innovating, creating new products, and increasing its profits. By employing the strategy, the company would create roles for various employees and ensure that the recruitment of candidates to various positions would be on merit so that those who qualify spend most of their time in marketing activities. The employees will also have more time for strategizing on how they can improve the company’s market position or improve relations with other players in the company in order to attain competitive advantage (Rainey, 2010).
The second offensive strategy involves implementing the concept of relationship marketing. Relationship marketing involves employing staff to mingle more with the customers of the company by arranging meetings with them to ascertain their specific needs (Sahaf, 2008). Relationship marketing is advantageous to a company since it provides many ways of meeting with customers. Technological advancements have led to the development of many cost-effective ways of meeting with customers (Porter, 2008). The building of high-quality databases that can store large amounts of information from customers on various products is possible to further the goals of a company’s relationship marketing strategy. It is from such information that a company can be able to effectively and efficiently respond to the customer trends in the market. This is mainly because the relationship marketing strategies that companies around the globe use help them in perceiving customers as income streams for their long-term trading activities (Sahaf, 2008).
Microsoft should implement the strategy so that it may maintain its market position as the global leader in selling software applications and other similar technologies. Previous studies reveal that Microsoft has been experiencing low sales and its profits have been on the downfall. These adverse effects arise from its competitors’ actions as they seem to have a better understanding of the customers’ needs. Microsoft’s competitors engage more in relationship marketing for longer periods. This issue enables them to come up with products that satisfy the customers’ needs. Therefore, for Microsoft to maintain its market position, it should adopt the strategy as it will enable it to gather vital information from its customers. This information will help in making and introducing creative products that satisfy its customers’ needs. The more sales that Microsoft makes, the more profitable it will become. These actions would help it to maintain its market position (Rainey, 2010).
The first defensive strategy involves ensuring that an organization has enough weapons at its disposal for protecting its market position (Sahaf, 2008). This may include ensuring that the brand identity, the customer’s perception of a company and its products, prices, and the advertising methods are accessible and available (Porter, 2008). The use of such a strategy by Microsoft would help it to counter the stiff competition it experiences from competitors. By securing the requirements for the defensive strategy, Microsoft will have the capacity to implement all activities that help in improving its brand’s identity and customer’s perception of its products and services. Such a measure would help the company in advancing its objective of protecting its current market position (Rainey, 2010).
In conclusion, the paper discussed two offensive strategies and one defensive strategy and how Microsoft should apply them to improve its performance. Therefore, from the discussion, it is clear that all these strategies are vital in the maintenance or protection of a company’s market position (Sahaf, 2008).
Porter, M.E. (2008). Competitive strategy: Techniques for analyzing industries and competitors. New York: Simon and Schuster.
Rainey, D.L. (2010). Enterprise-wide strategic management: Achieving sustainable success through leadership, strategies, and value-creation. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Sahaf, M.A. (2008). Strategic marketing: Making decisions for strategic advantage. London: PHI Learning.