What next for Apple?

     Full scoop-it: Link In August 2011 Apple became the world’s most valuable company overtaking Exxon Mobile, with a market capitalisation of $337 Billion compared to Exxon $331 Billion. Now that Steve Jobs is no longer driving the vision for Apple, can it maintain its market leadership, competitive edge and unique selling proposition? Apple users are very loyal and without question, nearly all of this group believe equating Apple with innovation is a fundamental truth. They wait (often in long queues) ...

Would you mind answering a few questions?

The doorbell rings and the first parcel of internal assessment samples are delivered, even though the remnants of the extended essays still sit on the table. The samples inside the parcel represent hours of hard work put in by both students and their teachers. However, it is also the beginning of a process that highlights the effectiveness, or otherwise, of the preparation of the students for assessment. Whether internal assessment, or extended essay, without doubt one constant will be market research. ...

Identifying, anticipating and satisfying consumer needs and wants

Marketing is an area that business and management students normally feel confident about. After all, everyone is surrounded by adverts and promotions and it is ‘simple’ to describe what is generally successful and what is not. However, marketing is not a topic that is generally handled well by students, either in examinations or coursework, as it is so easy to be generalised and unfocused with anecdotal information presented as ‘evidence’. This may explain why in the recent examination session, results ...

Listen to your focus group!

Market research is neither an exact science, nor infallible, as many marketing failures will attest. Nonetheless, it is not the best idea to do the exact opposite of what your target market is telling you. On the UK’s TV version of the The Apprentice, two teams of budding entrepreneurs fighting to win a £250,000 prize fund to invest into their own business, were given the task of developing a new ‘free’, premium magazine (‘freemium’). Both teams carried out market research ...

Selling your data soul

gK8Nao2Axg0 Whenever we interact with the Internet or make a commercial transaction on the Web, some aspect of our life and behaviour is tracked by someone. Our personal information is extremely valuable and although we may not know when, and how often it happens, the likelihood is that we appear on hundreds (or thousands) of lists regularly traded between commercial and state organisations, providing information on numerous aspects of our lives. Organisations (both private and public) will have information stored about us ...

Crowdsourcing for profit

Broadcasting schedules are packed with a plethora of programmes about, or produced by, the general public. In times of economic austerity, the cost of programming is crucial to the profitability and survival of a network. From 'fly-on-the-wall' documentaries and viewer diaries to talent competitions, they all have one thing in common; they are relatively cheap to produce. In addition they are often extremely popular - take 'X Factor'' or 'American Idol' as examples; the 'Average Joe' loves seeing himself on ...