I was asked to investigate what marketing is all about. In order for me to do this effectively I will need to explain how a company satisfies actual and potential needs, the company in my case will be O2 a leading telecommunications company. I will describe how it tries to keep ahead of competition and describe how legal and ethical constraints that will affect the marketing activities.
1.1 Introduction on O2
O2 is one of the leading mobile phone service providers in the UK. It provides a range of services and products to the public and also businesses.
O2 is the one of the UK largest mobile telecommunications community, employing over 65,000 staff and with over 130 million customers. O2 is a public limited company with listings on the London and stock exchange.
UK recognition of the O2 brand is growing as the company rolls out its identity into new markets. However, it retains local names and imagery in markets where this is essential to maintaining the trust of customers. It carries out a lot of advertising in the UK it also sponsors Arsenal Football Club a leading Premiership football team.
1.2 What is marketing?
In general marketing is about finding out and satisfying potential and actual customers needs. It will involve doing market research to help gather relevant information. Information can then be analysed to help the organisations with key decisions (4P’s). The 4P’s include product, place, price and promotion.
Satisfying actual and potential needs of O2
The ever-expanding mobile phone and telecommunication industry always face tough challenges. In order for any company in this market to come out successful it need to become aware of the customer needs, once it is aware of the customers needs satisfy them.
O2 become aware of its customer needs by conducting market research. Market research is conducted in many ways. By conducting primary research (Questionnaires & Surveys) and also getting feedback on their website and on products sold.
O2 like any other company once becoming aware of the customer needs it has to satisfy them.
O2 satisfies customer needs in a number of ways. It keeps phone charges to a minimum and also text messages to a minimum. It always is launching new tariffs to meet customer needs. It also has a cheap pay as you go service. It is always launching new mobile phones with the latest features. It also provides free and friendly customer service, which is vital if customers are facing any difficulties or problems.
2.1 Keeping ahead of competition
It is vital for any company to stay ahead of its competition and its rivals in order for it to succeed and possibly become a market leader.
O2 tries to be ahead of its competitors by carrying out many activities and launching new products and services.
They are constantly updating their tariff services providing customers with a tariff that best suits them at low prices. They are also always improving to get the best and cheapest pay as you go service. O2 attracts many people that use the text service excessively this is because their text service only costs 3p per message where as other companies like Orange and Vodafone text messages cost 10-15 pence.
Its customer’s service is free and friendly whereas other rivals like Vodafone and Orange have a customer’s service that costs.
The company is always trying to improve the network coverage in the UK they do this by installing new masts that provide better network coverage in previously poor areas.
Legal & Ethical Constraints
Common law and statutory law protect the consumer and ensure marketing is carries out in a responsible manner.
The makers and suppliers of products owe a duty of care to consumers. If customers feel that a product is harmful, they can bring a claim on the company. Acts of parliament have strengthen consumer protection and have also introduces strict guidelines for companies to abide by.
Pressure groups watch organisations and influence how they act. They can be extremely effective in changing the organisations behaviour. Pressure groups like Friends of the Earth pose a threat to companies like O2 because they are concerned on the environment. They will try to block proposals for companies like O2 to erect large telecommunication masts in areas because they are visual pollution and also pose a threat to local people and wildlife due to frequencies coming for these masts that can cause health and safety issues. Sometimes the company has to move locations of these masts duo to the surrounding area being highly populated.
Voluntary constraints are codes of practise set by the organisation to encourage good practise within the organisation. For example a 30minute break has to be 30 minutes and not over this will encourage good working practise.
I have found out how O2 tries to keep ahead of its competitors, how it fulfils actual and how it fulfils potential customer needs. I have also discovered what legal and ethical constraints effect how the business operates and also pressure groups that effect how the business conducts its business activities.
I think that O2 has excellent marketing principles they results highly influence their product and service. I don’t think any recommendations will make the company perform better it is already one of leading mobile service provider in the UK. However the company can always improve their research methods I think they should market to ethnic minorities and produce documents in their language to have a better understanding on their needs and wants.
Large companies have only just started to adapt this method. These groups actually will give the company a bigger market to work in.
I think that their advertising is mostly focused on the UK I recommend that they market they products worldwide like Vodafone. This will create a larger market to work in.