Marketing

Marketing Research Report

What should IBM do in order to maintain their lead as the world’s top provider of computer hardware, software, and services?

Executive Summary

The main aim of this marketing research report is to suggest the best ways to IBM in order to maintain their lead as the world’s top provider of computer hardware, software, and services. For this, the research used the appropriate research methodology. In this, researcher is used the both quantitative research design with using the descriptive research method. Furthermore, in order to collect the data, the primary data collection method is used with the help survey methodology. The questionnaire distribute among the 400 people of the IT field. The collected data is analysed with SPSS software. Form this; it is found that the different people have different views and opinion.

 

Background and Management Problem

The current business environment is very competitive due to this it is difficult for an organisation to achieve sufficient market share and sales. In order to achieve the sufficient market share and sales, companies takes help the marketing activities. In the current market, marketing plays a significant role in the success of a firm. The sale and market share depend on the way of the marketing (Aniskin, et. al. 2015). The marketing activity of a company includes advertising, public relations, promotions and personal selling. As concerning of the importance of the marketing activities, it can be said that a firm can miss the market opportunities without the conducting the marketing activities. Even though, without the marketing activity, a firm can product good quality product and service but company will not success in making good customer base (Schweidel & Knox, 2013).

In computer hardware industry, the name of the IBM is well known and almost everyone is aware about company’s product. IBM is acronym form of International Business Machines Corporation that is American based company that headquartered in New York, United States. The company was founded in the 1911 and its founder was Charles Ranlett Flint. In the context of the business operation, IBM has its business units in more than 170 countries. The company has a wide range of the computer hardware and also introduces the software in the industry. Along with this, IBM also provides the consulting service in the area of the information and computer technology. In each financial year, IBM spends millions of Dollar in the research and development in IT. It is the cause that company has been successful to introduce a number of the innovative products in the computer and information technology. In overall world, IBM provides employment to more than 400000 people that is great thing in the context of economic development.

Since the last decades, IMB has been maintained a significant market share in the industry of the hardware and software. But, in this competitive market, it is not easy for IBM to maintain this lead. That is why, it is essential for IBM to develop and implement the significant marketing strategy to retain the existing customers and make new customers. At the same time, the manager and decision makers of IMB are also responsible for maintaining the competitive position of the company in the market (Turner, et. al. 2016). There is strong completion in market for IBM by Microsoft, Compaq, HP, Dell and Apple.

Approach and Research Questions

Research Objective

The main aim of this marketing research study is to suggest the best ways to IBM in order to maintain their lead as the world’s top provider of computer hardware, software, and services. In order to achieve this aim, the below objective will be achieved.

  • To determine if there is a relationship between overall satisfaction with a company (Low/High) and the company that was evaluated.
  • To evaluate whether the overall satisfaction, quality, total cost of ownership, and value offered measures differ between the companies that were evaluated.
  • To determine whether IBM is perceived to be an ethical company.
  • To determine if evaluations on sales and support variables affect the likelihood of recommending an IT company to other people.
  • To compare image, and sales and support ratings between those who evaluated IBM and those who evaluated another company (non IBM).
  • To determine which of the future trends is most important for IBM to invest in to ensure their future success.
  • To evaluate whether the image variables can be represented by a reduced set of variables.

Research Question

  • What is relationship between overall satisfaction with a company (Low/High) and the company that was evaluated?
  • What is overall satisfaction level of the customer of the company in the context of the cost, quality and value?
  • How is IBM perceived to be an ethical company?
  • How sales and support variables affect the likelihood of recommending an IT company to other people.
  • What are main factors that can play significant role in the success of the company?

Brief Summary of the Research Design Employed

In the context of the research topic to maintain IBM’s lead as the world’s top provider of computer hardware, software, and services, the researcher is used quantitative research methodology. The quantitative research method allows the researcher to contain quantitative information in the research (Haughton, et. al. 2014). At the same time, the researcher also used to descriptive research method. It is helpful to suggest the ways to maintain IBM lead as the world’s top provider IT industry. Furthermore, in order to collect the data, the researcher used primary data collection method that allows the researcher to obtain the views of the population. For this, survey research strategy used by the researcher with questionnaire methodology. The prepared questionnaire is distributed among the 400 people among the IT industry. In the context of the data analysed, descriptive data analysis method is used with the help of the SPSS software. It represents the collected data in the graphical and tabulation format (Kowalik & Duliniec, 2015).

Sample Profile and Description

As the sample profile, the researcher selected 400 people that are employee in the IT industry. At the same time, the collected and analysed data will be presented as the different Frequency.

Data Analysis and Interpretation

Role within your company
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
ValidIT Decision Maker4210.510.510.5
IT Influencer9323.223.233.8
IT Staff26566.266.2100.0
Total400100.0100.0

Number of employees in your organization
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid1 – 497418.518.518.5
50 – 99235.85.824.2
100 – 4995714.214.238.5
500 – 9994511.211.249.8
1000 – 49997518.818.868.5
5000 – 99994511.211.279.8
10000 or more8120.220.2100.0
Total400100.0100.0

Vendor selected for evaluation
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
ValidMicrosoft22756.856.856.8
Compaq/HP9724.224.281.0
IBM7619.019.0100.0
Total400100.0100.0

Overall satisfaction
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid141.01.01.0
2143.53.54.5
35112.812.817.3
422857.057.374.6
510125.225.4100.0
Total39899.5100.0
Missing81.2
91.2
Total2.5
Total400100.0

Overall quality
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid161.51.51.5
2297.27.38.9
310025.025.334.2
417142.843.377.5
58922.222.5100.0
Total39598.8100.0
Missing81.2
941.0
Total51.2
Total400100.0

Total cost of ownership
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid13.8.9.9
2112.83.34.2
313634.040.544.6
413533.840.284.8
55112.815.2100.0
Total33684.0100.0
Missing82.5
96215.5
Total6416.0
Total400100.0

Value offered
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid192.22.52.5
24010.010.913.4
312431.033.947.3
414335.839.186.3
55012.513.7100.0
Total36691.5100.0
Missing81.2
9338.2
Total348.5
Total400100.0

Company cares about the society
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid171.82.12.1
2297.28.710.8
315538.846.457.2
49924.829.686.8
54411.013.2100.0
Total33483.5100.0
Missing83.8
96315.8
Total6616.5
Total400100.0

Highly ethical company
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid1194.85.65.6
25213.015.220.8
314436.042.162.9
49624.028.190.9
5317.89.1100.0
Total34285.5100.0
Missing95814.5
Total400100.0

Leader in the IT industry
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid251.21.31.3
3348.58.69.9
416140.240.850.6
519448.549.199.7
61.2.3100.0
Total39598.8100.0
Missing841.0
91.2
Total51.2
Total400100.0

Innovative company
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid12.5.5.5
2153.83.84.3
35914.815.019.3
418947.248.067.3
512832.032.599.7
71.2.3100.0
Total39498.5100.0
Missing83.8
93.8
Total61.5
Total400100.0

Company has strong capable senior leaders
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid161.51.71.7
2153.84.36.0
310526.229.935.9
413233.037.673.5
59323.226.5100.0
Total35187.8100.0
Missing81.2
94812.0
Total4912.2
Total400100.0

Financially sound company
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid2164.04.24.2
35112.813.517.7
417744.246.864.6
513433.535.4100.0
Total37894.5100.0
Missing82.5
9205.0
Total225.5
Total400100.0

Company I can trust
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid161.51.51.5
2287.07.28.8
311127.828.637.4
416441.042.379.6
57919.820.4100.0
Total38897.0100.0
Missing83.8
992.2
Total123.0
Total400100.0

Company has advertising I really like
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid1153.84.04.0
24010.010.614.6
319949.852.867.4
48521.222.589.9
5379.29.899.7
71.2.3100.0
Total37794.2100.0
Missing82.5
9215.2
Total235.8
Total400100.0

Known for treating its employees well
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid151.21.61.6
2246.07.89.4
312731.841.450.8
410827.035.286.0
54310.814.0100.0
Total30776.8100.0
Missing841.0
98922.2
Total9323.2
Total400100.0

Company does its fair share to help society
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid141.01.41.4
2205.06.88.1
312230.541.449.5
410325.834.984.4
54511.215.399.7
71.2.3100.0
Total29573.8100.0
Missing81.2
910426.0
Total10526.2
Total400100.0

Continue purchasing from this company next year
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid11.2.3.3
2112.82.93.2
34812.012.615.8
414536.238.253.9
517543.846.1100.0
Total38095.0100.0
Missing83.8
9174.2
Total205.0
Total400100.0

Percentage likelihood to continue
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid0102.52.52.5
31.2.22.8
41.2.23.0
52.5.53.5
62.5.54.0
81.2.24.2
91.2.24.5
10133.23.27.8
202.5.58.2
2551.21.29.5
3041.01.010.5
4041.01.011.5
50379.29.220.8
591.2.221.0
6071.81.822.8
6541.01.023.8
661.2.224.0
703.8.824.8
75123.03.027.8
791.2.228.0
80112.82.830.8
821.2.231.0
842.5.531.5
8571.81.833.2
871.2.233.5
90256.26.239.8
95174.24.244.0
961.2.244.2
971.2.244.5
983.8.845.2
99102.52.547.8
10020952.252.2100.0
Total400100.0100.0

Would recommend this company
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid1215.25.45.4
2194.84.910.3
37218.018.528.8
416340.841.970.7
511428.529.3100.0
Total38997.2100.0
Missing82.5
992.2
Total112.8
Total400100.0

Increase current purchases from this company
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid1153.84.24.2
25313.214.818.9
312431.034.553.5
411127.830.984.4
55614.015.6100.0
Total35989.8100.0
Missing83.8
9389.5
Total4110.2
Total400100.0

Quality of account representative
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid141.01.61.6
2358.814.115.7
37619.030.546.2
48721.834.981.1
54711.818.9100.0
Total24962.2100.0
Missing81.2
915037.5
Total15137.8
Total400100.0

Overall quality of products or services purchased
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid161.51.61.6
2328.08.39.9
311629.030.240.1
416140.241.982.0
56917.218.0100.0
Total38496.0100.0
Missing861.5
9102.5
Total164.0
Total400100.0

Overall quality of non-technical customer service
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid1164.06.16.1
25814.522.128.2
39924.837.866.0
46516.224.890.8
5246.09.2100.0
Total26265.5100.0
Missing871.8
913132.8
Total13834.5
Total400100.0

Overall quality of training
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid161.52.22.2
2287.010.412.6
39223.034.246.8
49122.833.880.7
55213.019.3100.0
Total26967.2100.0
Missing83.8
912832.0
Total13132.8
Total400100.0

Overall quality of technical support
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid1205.05.95.9
25213.015.321.2
311328.233.354.6
410225.530.184.7
55213.015.3100.0
Total33984.8100.0
Missing81.2
96015.0
Total6115.2
Total400100.0

Offer new web services
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid1307.58.68.6
27017.520.128.7
312431.035.664.4
48421.024.188.5
54010.011.5100.0
Total34887.0100.0
Missing81.2
95012.5
System1.2
Total5213.0
Total400100.0

Adopt XML language
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid14010.013.413.4
27117.823.737.1
38421.028.165.2
46917.223.188.3
5358.811.7100.0
Total29974.8100.0
Missing83.8
99724.2
System1.2
Total10125.2
Total400100.0

Expand usage of mobile and wireless devices
FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent
Valid1338.29.59.5
25914.817.026.5
312130.234.961.4
410325.829.791.1
5317.88.9100.0
Total34786.8100.0
Missing82.5
95012.5
System1.2
Total5313.2
Total400100.0

Interpretation

From the above data analysis, it can be stated that in the survey, 400 peoples were participated. They were playing the different role in their organisations. In this survey, there were IT decision maker, IT influencer and IT staff participated. It is also found that number of the employee is different companies in each company of IT. In this survey, 81 participants were belonged from company that has more than 10000 employees. In the context of the vendor selection, it is identified that highest 227 participated selected Microsoft. But, on the other hand 76 participates selected IBM as the vendor. In this, it is also found that 329 participants are highly satisfied with the selected vendor (Mullakhmetov, et. al. 2016).

The above table and graph depicts that 67.8 participants are happy with the product and service of the selected company. In the context of the ownership cost, it is found that 136 participants were said that there is high owner ship cost of the company. Likewise, 143 participants said that quality of the company’s product is good against the price. The next section of the questionnaire contains the question on the image of the company. In this, it is identified that 99 participants said that their company is careful above for the community and society. Additionally, 96 participants were agreed that their selected company is highly ethical. In the concern of innovation, 189 participants were agreed that their company is an innovative firm. 132 participants in all said that their selected company is market leader in the industry. At the same time, 311 participants were agreed and strongly agreed that selected company has good financial sound. In the reference of the trust, 164 participants were agreed and 79 participants were strongly agreed (Geangu, et. al. 2016).

Furthermore, 32.5% were agreed and strongly agreed that the marketing of their selected company is effective. 151 participants said that the company is known for the treating its employees well. 37% participants said that organisation does its fair share to help the community and society. In additionally, 84.3% participants said that they would like the product and service in the next year from the company. 71.2% participants were likes to recommend to the company in the context of the likelihood. Further, 46.5% participants said that they will increase purchase from them (Schweidel & Knox, 2013).

In the context of the quality of the account representative or team, 34.9% participant believed that it is good. In the same concern of this, 41.9 participants said that overall quality of the product and service is good. 72.8% participants said that overall quality of the non technical customer service of the company is also good. In the reference of the overall quality and training, it is found that 87.7% participants said that quality of training is good. At the same time, it is also identified that quality of the technical support is also good of the company. In reference of the consideration of the offering new web services 124 participants were highly liked the company. At the same time, in the views of adoption of XML language in your company’s internal application, it is found that 62.8% participant were liked the company of their choice (Kowalik & Duliniec, 2015). Furthermore, it is also identified that103 participants were liked to the business expedition strategy of the company.

Conclusion and recommendation for IBM managers

From the above discussion and analysis, it can be said that there is significant role of the marketing activities of the company in the current competitive market. It helps the company achieve the market share and profit (Patterson, 2015). At the same time, it is also recommended to the manager of the IBM that they should develop and implement the effective marketing strategy. It will help the company to attract the new customers as well as the existing customers. Additionally, they should also develop strong competition policies to beat the competitor in the market. At the same time, it can also be recommended to the manager that they should concern on the enhancing the skills and ability of the employees to increase the overall performance of the firm (Glinka, 2017). For this, they can develop strategy for training and development program for employees.

 

 References

Aniskin, Y. P., Moiseeva, N. K., Rygalin, D. B., & Sedova, O. V. (2015). Innovation and marketing activity of high technology companies in business management. International Journal of Economics and Financial Issues5(3S).

Geangu, I. P., Dumitru, I., & Gardan, D. (2013). Ethical and legal aspects of marketing activity in the field of dental healthcare services. Contemporary Readings in Law and Social Justice5(2), 904.

Glinka, K. (2017). University and city marketing-the cases of Poznań, Wrocław and Kraków. Model approach. Journal of Education Culture and Society, (1), 256-272.

Haughton, D., Hua, G., Jin, D., Lin, J., Wei, Q., & Zhang, C. (2014). Imputing unknown competitor marketing activity with a Hidden Markov Chain. Journal of Direct, Data and Digital Marketing Practice15(4), 276-287.

Kowalik, I., & Duliniec, E. (2015). The Entrepreneurial Marketing Concept and Its Application by the International New Ventures. Chinese Business Review14(5), 253-264.

Mullakhmetov, K. S., Sadriev, R. D., Gabidinova, G. S., & Akhmetshin, E. M. (2016). Control in marketing-based management. Academy of Marketing Studies Journal20(2), 13.

Patterson, L. (2015). General papers-Marketing analytics How best-in-class marketers use alignment and accountability for value creation. Applied Marketing Analytics1(2), 168-174.

Schweidel, D. A., & Knox, G. (2013). Incorporating direct marketing activity into latent attrition models. Marketing Science32(3), 471-487.

Turner, R., Er, M., Sankaran, S., & Lecoeuvre, L. (2016). Marketing for the project: Project marketing by the contractor. Manageable Cooperation?.

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