It will not be incorrect to state that the product life cycle is the most important and essential part of marketing. A product goes through different stages that are known as product lifecycle. New products progresses through a sequence of different stages in which introduction of the product to growth, maturity and decline are included. However, it is not necessary that all products reach to the final stage of the life cycle. In fact, some never reach to maturity stage. The reason is that it depends on the market situation and marketing strategy of the product. It should be noted that the revenue and profits generate on growth and maturity stage. Thus, the purpose of the paper is to identify and elaborate the key characteristics found within each life cycle. Furthermore, the paper will reflect upon four different product life cycles. In which products will be described that appropriately fit in the cycle stages.
It is a first step in which the product owner or the company of the product create awareness in the market. It is the stage where the company takes risks to develop a market for their product. For that, the branding of the product and maintenance of the quality is necessary to obtain. To build market share the pricing is a main factor it could be the most expensive stage for a company because to step in the market majority of the companies prefer to have low pricing strategy (Lamb, Hair, & McDaniel, 2014). It becomes difficult to recover the development and other costs at the introduction stage. Considering the example of Procter and Gambler (P&G) introduced a new household product in the market Febreze that is an innovative odor eliminator product. The P&G is a famous brand that took advertising strategy to promote their product. They selected celebrity to target the female segment and housewives. The advertisement clearly sent message and benefits about the product to create the awareness about the product. It was hard to make this product a part of a typical household shopping list. Thus, it was the reason due to which there was big investment needed for the introduction of the Febreze. The introduction stage for Febreze was not the time in which P&G could look for the revenue. Therefore, the product awareness was maintained until there was a positive organic growth in sales.
The growth stage is a time when the company and product owners seek for the brand preference among customers for increased market shares. In the growth stage, it is necessary that the pricing strategy should remain same for continuous growth. It is the stage where distribution channels need to be increased to fulfill the growing demands for them product because customers start accepting the product at this stage (Lamb, Hair, & McDaniel, 2014). After the launch of the Minute made pulpy orange under the Coca-Cola brand umbrella in the market the launch of Tropicana Twister Orange juice drink created a tough competition. Though, it took four years to become stable but today it is a juice brand that is widely available and acceptable in the market. Also, people also prefer it over other juice brands because it is the part of almost every hypermarket and retail and beverage point. Also, the company used media for its promotions and utilized almost every mediums of advertisement. Considering the growth of the product, the company launches different fruit flavors in Tropicana Twister drink bottle. It will help a company to continue the growth of the Tropicana Twister because already like this product and they will love to experience the new one. Thus, this strategy worked and it benefited the company in terms of profits and increased revenues. It helps a company to invest more on the promotions to maximize the potential of this growth stage (Hooley, Piercy, & Nicoulaud, 2012).
During the maturity stage, the product establishes it market share it gives tough competition to the other products and companies. It is the stage where some modifications and improvements in the product are needed considering the demands of the customer or market needs. At this stage, the primary objective of the company is to defend the market share while maximizing the profit. Therefore, changes in product features, pricing, distribution and promotions are focused more than ever on the companies for their products. For example, Pepsi is in the maturity phases since ages (Lamb, Hair, & McDaniel, 2014). The reason is that the company is using the establishment of the product range. PepsiCo is continually focusing on the enhancement of the product features pricing and distribution of their products. The promotions done by the Pepsi Company as a brand are always very catchy that a maximum number of people are now loyal customers of the Pepsi brand. The brand differentiated itself as a youngsters’ brand, for that the company used pop stars as brand ambassadors for the promotions. Furthermore, at the maturity stage the increase in prices never impacted the sales of the product. It is now a part of daily routines life for youngsters and many people. It is the reason due to which the product is on maturity stage where is not going towards the decline and it is on same stage where the profit is maximizing by the company (Gillespie & Hennessey, 2010).
When the market for a product start was shrinking, and it stops generating revenues, then it is a declining stage. The reason is that this shrinkage could be due to the saturated market, and consumers are switching to a different or another type of products. It is the time when the companies stops making profits that affect the production process. Thus, companies choose less-expensive methods of production for a sustainable profits margin. In some cases, the companies discontinue the product from the market. The best example of this stage can be taken from many technology products (Lamb, Hair, & McDaniel, 2014). For example, Apple that is known for offering best products discontinued their product Palm Point. It was launched in 1993 and was discontinued in 1998. The reason was increased competition in the market because technology improved rapidly, and other companies came up with a totally improved idea with low prices comparatively. On the start of the decline of this product Apple Company also reduced the costs and continued to offer it to the loyal niche market but due to the advanced technology it was useless to continue such product. Thus, Apple was in financial distress and gone through decline stage due to this product (Gillespie & Hennessey, 2010).
It can be analyzed from the information above and insights of different products life cycle stages that there are some key characteristics that can be applied by the companies for profits and revenues. Furthermore, companies apply appropriate resources and marketing strategies considering on what stage their products are at in the product lifecycle.
Gillespie, K., & Hennessey, H. D. (2010). Global Marketing (1st ed.). New York: Cengage Learning.
Hooley, G., Piercy, N. F., & Nicoulaud, B. (2012). Marketing strategy and competitive positioning. London: Prentice Hall.
Lamb, C., Hair, J., & McDaniel, C. (2014 ). MKTG 8. New York: Cengage Learning.