Question one: strategies companies use to compete
Companies use different strategies to compete in the market. Typically companies employ the concept of pricing to position them favourably in the market against their rivals. Pricing involves the use of price discrimination, discounts and lowered price models. Price constitutes one fundamental factor that determines consumer decision making. Consumers would prefer low prices to high prices and would consequently go for lowly priced commodities for satisfaction of their wants and needs. Companies also employ marketing techniques to compete in the market. In marketing, companies offer special rates for commodities give after sale servicing and provide additional material for consumers concerning available commodities.
Further, companies typically offer comprehensive after sale services for purposes of retaining their client base. They give additional follow up services including warranties and clinics for durable products. The warranties are intended to convince customers of the durability of their products while clinics suffice for purposes of improving and updating the products. These strategies give companies competitive advantage essentially boosting the company positions in the market.
Fresh Direct can be classified under companies that use the after sale service strategy to gain a competitive advantage in the market. The company, which specializes in grocery and meals, employs just in time model of operation. Fresh Direct prepares meals and groceries for customers based on their orders. Ordinarily, groceries and meals are prepared in advance and sold to customers. However, Fresh Direct has devised a system in which customers place orders online and deliveries made to them thereon.
Question two: Internet impact of the five forces from a music perspective
Porter’s five forces analysis tackled five fundamental issues central to competition in the market. The model covers the following five factors: firstly, the threat posed by new competition. Secondly, the threat brought about by substitute products or services. Another factor is the bargaining power of suppliers. The last factor is the intensity of competition rivalry. From a music perspective, the internet has impacted differently on the five forces. For instance, the threat that new competition poses has been widened by the conveniences internet applications provide. Competitors are able to learn new skills and technologies which enable them challenge their rivals effectively. The internet, it can be argued, has heightened competition levels between competitors. In addition, the internet has facilitated a level playing field eliminating undue advantages previously limiting fair competition.
In the same token, it can be posited that the internet has widely facilitated the threat by substitute products and services. This is through the availability of information to both suppliers and consumers. Information availed in the market has been used for purposes of devising alternative products and services that address similar needs previously addressed by old products. Today, musicians have learnt to incorporate customer demands safely in their products so as to satisfy the latter’s collective needs. Customers bargaining power has colossally improved. The internet provides information on available alternatives. Consequently, customers have become strong and firm bargainers safe in the knowledge of a wide array of opportunities they could opt for.
On the same breadth, the increases information flow has improved the position of suppliers. Suppliers have become stronger bargainers especially since they know how marketable their products are in the market. Finally, the intensity of competition has been increased essentially because the market barriers to entry and exit have been eliminated with the introduction of the internet.
Question three: Strengths and weaknesses of Zara Store management model and the use of information technology in supporting business technology
Zara Stores model has adopted a strategy that facilitates a short lead time and allows for an expanded availability of products. It allows for the stores to order for specific products intended for sale to particular clients. This way, the company does not have to overstock unnecessarily high amounts of products. It simply allows for the stores to order for products whose orders have since been placed at the retail stores.
In addition, Zara employs exclusivity in the sense that it has a select array of products in limited supply. Through this, it introduces new models of products every week. Zara employs the use of information technology to regularly update its stores on the models available in the market. It has a 430 stores spread in seventy three countries. It has updated its systems so that new and available models from any store are marketed all over other stores.
Question four: Netflix’s mail order and video streaming model
Netflix’s mail order system essentially allows for the provision of movies in DVD copies which are delivered via mail. The system facilitates renting of movies by clients at a reasonable price. On the other hand, video streaming continuously allows for clients to access movies and television channels through their television sets or personal computers.
This way, clients get to watch movies and television programs within their own conveniences in their homes.
It should be appreciated that Netflix employs technologies that enable it to tap the market niche to its own advantage. It usually applies customer friendly techniques so as to tap and retain the client base.
Question five: Moore’s laws and its implications in terms of the digital divide and e waste
Moore’s laws refer to the concept of faster and cheaper computing. According to its originator, Moore, computing ought to be faster and cheaper for users all over the globe. The assumption is that technology being easily exportable, it should be faster and easier to transfer and spread the applications.
However, a digital divide still exists between groups of people accessing and using the internet and computing services. The level of competencies and conveniences available for populations varies substantially. As a matter of fact, the level of progression experienced with developed countries departs radically from the progress level in the developing countries.
Question six: Primary sources of value for network effects
The primary sources of value for the network effect include subscriber base of the product, technical infrastructure and the pool of manpower in the network. Networks generally refer to the effects the end users of a product accrue to the product as a result of their use. Subscriber base essentially determines how wide spread product use would be. The more the subscriber base, the more likely the success of the product consumption as people are easily absorbed into new developed systems.
Technical infrastructure boosts network effect as it enables the continuous development and spread of the application. Infrastructure usually maintains the application and utility of a product cascading down to a successful network effect for the product. On the other hand, network effect could be rendered meaningless without a suitable pool of manpower that maintains and sustains the system effectively cushioning it from likely shortfalls.
Question seven: positive and negative effects social media has had on society and business
Social media has impacted heavily on business and society at large. For instance, it has effectively improved communication by businesses to potential markets. Businesses today opt to use social sites for purposes of communication and advertisements. The nature of social media is that it remains facilitative of non official methods of communication, a trend that captures the interests of the current generation.
However, one negative effect social media has had on business relates to reduced physical interactions. People using social media interact virtually effectively eliminating physical interactions. This has dispensed with random and unplanned purchases that ordinarily characterized physical interactions between customers and business owners.
Question eight: social graph and facebook model
A social graph narrows down to depicting an individual’s personal relationships. It is an analysis of the relationships of an individual. Facebook has expanded the social graph by providing real time online applications that individuals could use to improve their social relations with their friends and relatives.
The improved social relationships through use of Facebook applications has, however, come with a price to pay. The applications have limited physical interactions between persons. This has affected personal contact between groups of people. Today, personal contact among people has reduced substantially. The consequences resulting from failure to interact physically can be seen in light of reduced societal consciousness. Society has become less conscious of its own collective needs. Instead, people are more concerned with their own personal growth and developments thanks to the physical isolation that exists.
On the other hand, Facebook applications have increased volumes of data exchanged within the societal mediums. People today are able to interact at a more personalized level and exchange deeper amounts of data between them.
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Emerson, Robert W. Business Law. New York: Barron's Educational Series, 2009.
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Pride, William M, Robert J Hughes and Jack R Kapoor. Business. New York: Cengage Learning, 2011.