Product and service marketing are highly related. Take the success of a company like Apple, for example. The technology giant operates nearly 400 retail stores, employs more than 42,000 people and hosts more than a million visitors each day. In 2012, Apple’s retail operations generated nearly $19 billion. Furthermore, it’s estimated that Apple’s Fifth Avenue store generates more than $35,000 per square foot, making it the highest grossing retailer in New York – ever. Those statistics reinforce the company’s product and service strategies of those of a highly successful company. Apple continues to hold a number one spot on a list of the world’s most admirable companies. However, the success of Apple hasn’t always been so great. It wasn’t until the company combined good products with good services, that profits increased exponentially. Slide 12-12: Service Differentiation
Apple actually had a point in business in which it struggled. That was in the 1990s when the company was selling products through larger retailers such as CompUSA and Sears. It was then, that Apple computers were shoved to the side, out of the main view of customers, as just another computer brand available on store shelves. Apple employees didn’t pay enough attention to the installation of the product in the big box stores in which it was being sold, so there wasn’t a true selling point for buyers. Also, the product delivery took a major hit. In fact, the brand became so weakened when retailers did not market the products properly, that the inventory wasn’t fully stocked. While Apple products plummeted in sales, the Gateway company was offering direct sales to consumers in its own stores, and Apple had to reinvent its business model, and quickly learn how to operate in a different manner.
Less than two years after Apple launched its retail stores, Gateway shut down all of its shops and laid off 2,500 workers. Only three years later, CompUSA closed its chain of 23-year-old stores as well....
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