Strategic Implications of Information Technology for Pioneer Corporation
Definition of the topic
Social websites are increasingly becoming important in almost all aspects of life, from socializing, communication to business and leadership. Social networking is increasingly shaping the way in which business organizations communicate and collaborate whether inside the organization or with external entities. Social websites provide a good means of connecting with customers, suppliers and even competitors (Sharp, 2009). Advertising, for example is the most important activity through which social networks have increased the profitability of business organizations. Facebook is the major social website which has become very popular among people across all ages groups, and which many business organizations are increasingly utilizing to lure in customers and get feedbacks from them (Sharp, 2009). The task of finding customers to a business has become easy through the website because membership is free, thus creating a large pool of potential customers for businesses. Pioneer Corporation therefore has a chance to advertise itself, lure in customers, and communicate with them in an effort to get feedbacks from them while at the same time selling its trade policies to the large number of customers available online (Sharp, 2009).
Pioneer Corporation is a business organization located in Seattle, the United States of America. The organization is based on music, software and entertainment industry, whose trade activities is selling music, films, music and arts equipments and software. It was founded in 1999 as a private business owned by seven members, and rapidly developed into a leading business organization of its kind in the United States of America. It mainly focused on producing and marketing entertainment based products and software, which have found use in most parts of America and beyond. The company has also increased its services from its initial music selling corporation to a leading organization dealing with a wide range of services such as films, video games, entertainment based software, and all sales are done online, which came about with the advent of the e-commerce. The company has therefore increased sales and consequent profitability for the last five years.
Despite these positive developments, Pioneer Corporation has faced stiff competition from its major competitors, especially those companies which embraced information technology earlier, and those companies which owns either their own social websites or which have intensively participated in communicating with their customers within the available social websites, mainly on Facebook and twitter (Treadaway, & Smith, 2010). These companies have largely increased their market share within the world market, while at the same time reducing the market share for the other companies which have done less towards interacting with customers on the websites. a major example of such companies is the YouTube, an American corporation which sells music and other entertainment products online, and which owns a social website I addition to a profile on others like Facebook and twitter (Treadaway, & Smith, 2010).
Current business issues
Currently, Pioneer Corporation is involved in several business activities within the entertainment industry. Information technology has been recognized as the major toll towards increasing the volume of the products offered for sale in the market place. The corporation owns one of the most customized websites, through which customers can enquire for information, order for products and download and pay for these products online (Treadaway, & Smith, 2010). There has been an increased demand of these services for the last three years, especially in the film and music industry. The company is sometimes challenged by the excessive demand made by customers; while at the same time respond to their enquiries within the website. Customers sometimes also get far beyond the company website’s ability to handle the discussion posted online, and this has even turned the website from an executive business oriented to mutual discussion platform. The company also depends on emails, telephones and surface mails to receive enquiries from customers and suppliers, and to respond to their requests. This has additionally brought in more expenses in addition to the fact that they are also slow and unreliable. The company has for a longtime south to have its own social website, and as now it seems this may be slowed down by the fact that other websites have already dominated the industry, while competitors to pioneer international have embarked on utilizing the chances that the available social networks like Facebook and twitter have put in place, and given that a large number of people have membership profiles in these sites. The fact that membership is free while joining is easy has increased the number of people socializing in the websites. In addition, there is great democracy and freedoms within these sites as anybody is allowed to express him or her thoughts quite freely without being monitored (Treadaway, & Smith, 2010). Moreover, any member of the socializing groups within the websites have the chance to make and affect advertising WebPages for his or her own company, and invite other persons to comment, participate in discussions, make recommendations and even purchase services from the company. Pioneer Corporation will therefore focus on utilizing these chances in order to increase its sales within the next three years (Treadaway, & Smith, 2010).
Solution to the current business issues
The company should participate actively in exchange of ideas with other players in the filed, especially on the national and the world market. In order to participate in this, the company must make several changes within its mode of trade, management and response of the customer’s enquiries and demands. Of most importance is the participation of the company in social websites. Particularly, the organization should create a Facebook account in order to join officially as a member, from where it will then invite people from the public end and in the process advertise itself as a major dealer in music and entertainment industry. This is a strategy and needs to be approached from a business perspective.
The fits step will be to investigate what advantages the company will obtain from developing a profile within Facebook. The mangers will have to ask themselves several questions such as what they want from the association, what they need to put up in order to participate in discussions with other parties and why they have to participate in the association. The investigation will be focused on finding out the possibility of solving the current business issues such as customer feedback and advertising within the Facebook organization. In particular, the company will have to identify the possible number of customers that can be reached out using the Facebook account, and the section of the community (market segment) that is actively participating in the social association provided by Facebook.
The second step is to determine what information the company will post within its Facebook account for the public to see and easily understand it. The third step is to determine what approach the company will use to reach out for customers within the website. The company will define what methodology will be utilized to lure in people from the public domain of the Facebook to join the Pioneer profile and participate in discussions, and to inform them on the products of the company.
A fourth step is to investigate the possibility of developing that interconnection between the company profile on Facebook and the company website so that customers and other persons and entities could visit the company website directly from their Facebook accounts. This would mean that the customers would find it easy to make enquiries and recommendations on the company profile while visiting their own Facebook account.
The final step is to investigate what other companies are offering on their own Facebook profiles. This is especially important because the major competitors have developed very interesting profiles aimed at attracting persons on Facebook, and which are able to convince the customers to make order purchases on Facebook at the first time they come into contact with the company.
The company will finally have to decide the cost of maintaining the Facebook account, the personnel to be involved in receiving the requirements, recommendations, comments and enquiries posted by the customers or the public. This will be evaluated to determine the possibility of increasing sales in comparison with the cost of developing the Facebook account and maintaining it.
Discussion to the Solutions
Social websites like Facebook have the capacity to allow people and organizations holding account in their websites to communicate freely, participate in discussions, advertise their products and services and invite investigate each other’s actions through their profiles. It also allows people and organizations to change their profiles to suit their needs and requirements.
On investigating what the company requires from actively involving itself in the social website, the management will find out that most of their requirements could be satisfied if the chances and opportunities provided to the public by Facebook are utilized. For example, advertisement has been the major discrepancy facing Pioneer Corporation, and in which other competitors like YouTube have utilized to develop a wide awareness of their products and increase sales (Kraus, & Friedel, 2009). Facebook allows the company to freely open account with them, through which Pioneer will post information on its services, products and mode of doing business. In addition Facebook has a section that allows the company to include its website Uniform Resource Locator (URL). If a customer wishes to get more information on Pioneer Corporation, he will only have to click on this URL and be redirected to the company website. This is an advantage to the company because customers will find it easy to explore the company website without having to memorize the website address and specifications (Kraus, & Friedel, 2009). This allows for interconnection between the company Profile on its Facebook account and its own website. In addition, customers willing to buy services and products from Pioneer corporation do not need to know the website address of the company, rather thy need top have a Facebook account. Moreover, the requests, comments, concerns and other information that customers post on the company profile on Facebook will be transmitted directly to the company website, and be received as mails. This will allow for effective response to individual persons requests and comments on Facebook. This will in turn allow the company to strive and improve its services and products, mode of conducting business affairs and the way they approach the public and its customers (Sharp, 2009).
The cost of joining Facebook, creating an account, developing an attractive profile and making advertisements is absolutely free Facebook allows people from all parts of the world and across all ages and gender to have Facebook accounts and enter into conversations free of charge. The only charge involved is internet charges, which vary with each individual country or states. In addition, Facebook allows people to upload pictures, graphics, letters, files and other arts and allow other persons to make comments on them, while only the profile owner has the capacity to remove and upload them (Sharp, 2009). This is an advantage to companies like Pioneer Corporation that is willing to advertise its service and products on the social website. This is because the products of the company are effectively advertised with pictures, photographs and other graphics. Music and films can also be downloaded easily as long as Facebook allows for interconnection between the company account on Facebook and its own website (Sharp, 2009).
Information technology is a vital tool for the organization owing to the nature of its activities. The organization has for the past ten years benefitted from information technology, especially in developing its services, commodities and advertisement. However, the company has not yet taken advantage of the available social websites to lure in customers, and this is the main challenge faced by the managers. With the current rate of globalization, especially on the internet technology, Pioneer corporation need to adjust its method of activity so that it embraces the importance of participating in active networking with the other entities within the industry, the public and customers (Kaushik, 2009). Although the business organization has its website in which it has been utilizing to advertise, incorporate membership from its customers and sell its products online, the website has not been able to lure in large number of customers, as it remains quite unknown in some areas (Sharp, 2009). By seeking membership on Facebook, Pioneer Corporation will be at a better position to advertise itself on the international business platform, increase its customers not only in America but on the international market, and communicate directly with them, while at the same time get feedbacks from the customers and the public (Kaushik, 2009). The company will also be at a position to improve its services and the mode of doing business as per the customers’ requirements.
Recommendations for the executive committee
Pioneer Corporation could perform better if it embraces the information technology and the features this technology has created. The company has to compete with other competitors on the global market, rather than dealing with national market only, which is flooded with competitors. The internet technology has allowed companies to interact with their customers and the public, and Pioneer cannot be left out, considering the great business opportunities that come with increasing technology (Johnson, 2009).
Facebook has been found to be the best social; website based on the internet which allows the companies like Pioneer to increase their sales not only in America but also in the world market. It has provided the company with a chance to go global, while at the same time maintaining and improving its position locally (Johnson, 2009). Advertisement within the local market has been occupied by competitors, and this has denied pioneer a chance to lure large number of customers. In addition, the company has been unable to develop its own social website which could attract a large pool of people from which it could gain customers (Johnson, 2009). However, it has been realized that other competitors have utilized Facebook after realizing the completion existing on other channels of advertisement. The cost of maintaining the Facebook account is less than that associated with conventional methods such as mass media, and will aid the company to cut on these costs (Johnson, 2009).
It is therefore recommended that Pioneer corporation awn a Facebook account from which it will harvest all the benefits provided by the association. The executive management must recognize that the Facebook will be a tool aimed at increasing profitability, and thus its maintenance be positioned within the company premises. The committees recommend that the Facebook maintenance offices be located under the human resource department, and a position of social website manager be created. The manager will be assisted by a deputy assistance manager (Johnson, 2009). The manager will report to the human resource manager. The social website maintenance department should be equipped with a computer laboratory, computers, full-time internet connectivity and qualified information technology personnel who will respond to the customers on the Facebook account.
Johnson. F. K. (2009). Doing Business on Facebook. Mason, OH: Cengage learning.
Kaushik, A. (2009). Web Analytics 2.0: The Art of Online Accountability and Science of Customer Centricity. New York: John Wiley and Sons.
Kraus, P., & Friedel, C. (2009). Online Social Networks and Their Business Relevance. London: GRIN Verlag.
Sharp, J. (2009). Design and Launch an Online Social Networking Business in a Week. Washinton, DC: Entrepreneur Press.
Treadaway, C., & Smith, B. (2010). Facebook Marketing: An Hour a Day. New York, DC: John Wiley and Sons.