Assignment Sample on Strategic Management

Topic – Analysis of strategic management of Active & its competitors Pt academy, trainfitness, hfe

Introduction

The report will critically discuss about Study Active current competitive strategies in respect to its key competitors such as PT academy, TrainFitness and HFE etc. the analysis purpose is to analyse the study active competitiveness against its competitors. This will be undertaken through applying several tools into practice like Ansoff matrix, McKinsey Matrix, Generic strategy and BCG matrix etc (Hill et al., 2016). These would help to analyse the Study Active current strategies and performances and this evaluation allows to bringing improvements accordingly. These tools also assist the Study Active about its competitor’s steps as well so that it would take future steps properly. Before applying these tools, it become must to understand Study Active background or about the industry in which Study Active or its competitors exist. The learning of the industry would help to suggest more productive suggestions to Study Active.

Basically, Study Active can be understood as a UK based one of the leading providers of Gym instructor & Personal Training qualifications. They are an active IQ centre and have skills Active/REPs Lead provider status. However, Study Active uses blended learning delivery method through utilising of e-learning, practical workshop, webinars and dedicated tutorials to empower to become a fitness professional. This approach allows individual learner to work at its own pace and wrap study about other commitments. In context to pricing, Study Active introduced sensible pricing through offer options of free instalments on all courses which is useful to learn and bring return for firm in the form of positive word-of-mouth. This encourages larger younger generation to move towards the fitness industry where current trends indicating positive direction. It is because Post-COVID pandemic peoples are more conscious about their health and this makes them to get hire professional trainers which guide them in their fitness routine. This leads to the increasing demand for the professional trainers (Stead and Stead, 2014). In that case, Active study e-learning classes or practical workshops helped many individuals to earn for their livelihood. Thus, this industry has also made the current generation to introduce with the fitness industry and show them career opportunities which they have in future.

At the same time, the journey of Study Active is not that easy due to increasing competitors in both local and global market. Likewise, its major competitors are the PT Academy, Train Fitness & HFE etc. apart from this, the exposure of internet has made every individual to aspire to become a professional trainer. This kind of areas creates issue for Study Active to become unique. That’s why the use of these given tools is important to reach out on the relevant analysis. The critical analysis of Study Active performances in comparison to its competitors then it helps them to set out the plan and can able to achieve more international expansion. Still Active is more popular in UK but not touched diverse cultured market on proper manner. That’s the reason why it is must to undertake the tools analysis (Hussain et al., 2013). These tools would be proven useful to reveal about the Study Active internal and external analysis and this allows the firm to study about its internal resources and capabilities along with the external factors that could affect in near future.

Main Body

Ansoff Matrix

This matrix is developed by applied mathematician and business manager i.e. H. Igor Ansoff and published in the Harvard Business Review in 1957. The matrix has helped many marketers and executives for better understand the risks inherent in growing their business (Hussain et al., 2013). There are four strategies of Ansoff Matrix included and these strategies allow the business to take up and move accordingly towards growth side.

  • Market Penetration

This strategy concentrates on increasing sales of existing products to an existing market. In respect to Study Active, it is identified that firm is dealing with e-learning at UK region and it uses same online services for the people to learn about the fitness or process to impart education to new trainee (Dawes, 2018). Thus, it can be stated that Study Active is doing well in UK region with its existing services.

  • Product Development

It focuses on introducing new products to an existing market. Study Active is not really engaged with any new services in UK market as it still uses FREE CPD for its PT students. Apart from this, it made association with IBM for creation of sites for making people to access the services of firm.

  • Market development

The strategy focus is to entering into new market through using existing products. it still didn’t move to any international market with lot of promotions as it definitely take tutors from different nations but not indulge into imparting services to international PT students (Hussain et al., 2013). It can be stated that Study Active need to explore new areas for expanding its services.

  • Diversification

It include focusing on enter into new market with introduction of new products. In respect to this strategy, Study Active hasn’t introduced any new service nor invested in new market (Kalogiannidis and Mavratzas, 2020). It means that firm to be competitive definitely required to be efficient enough to explore new markets with innovation in its services.

On the basis of Ansoff tool analysis, it can be analysed that Study Active is doing well in UK as its e-learning, webinar or practical exercise supports the UK people to learn about fitness and understand it how to practically execute it. The CPD certification also allows people to perceive quality in Active learning impartment. In respect to this Ansoff matrix, currently firm using market penetration strategy it focuses on UK people with its existing product/services. But it can’t help them to become a global leader or competent for many years. This is because its key competitor likes PT academic or Train Fitness both UK based fitness firms are also engaging in India or other Asian parts of globe. This international exposure allows them to get added with lot of people and help them to get familiar about the fitness and adapt this field as their employment opportunity. In that case, Active is lacking behind of their competitors in terms to explore international market. That’s why, it become important to address market penetration or differentiation strategy to become a global leader and importantly for improving sustainability (Koks and Kilika, 2016). Hence, it is important for Study Active to update itself as per the current trends as without bring constant changes then it may face reduction in its market share which is not beneficial for its long-term existences in market. The increasing competition also become a reason why firm need to strengthen its strategy so that it maintain its leading or powerful position in both present and future scenario.

Generic Strategy

It is developed by Michael Porter where it introduced three major business strategies which is utilised by various businesses and still new entrepreneurs indulge in selecting of most relevant one for their business (Parnell, 2013). It is believed that these generic strategies are efficient to gain competitive advantage. These three are cost leadership, differentiation and focus etc.

Cost Leadership Strategy:-

The cost leadership strategy emphasises on the area to put the lowest cost of production of a product or services. However, lowest cost indicates low price of product and it would encourage more individual to perform buying actions. cost can be managed through link of value chain where excessive cost indulge in marketing or either packaging can be cut-down for the better results. The competitive advantage usually achieved by the firm in today’s time with the reduction of cost by maintaining the quality of product or services. The strategy promotes the product pricing at competitive parity (Merchant, 2014). In this, company priced the product as per the competitors but by putting at low cost. The company would be able to sustain itself even through lean times and invest more into business all throughout.

Differentiation:-

This process includes creation of differentiated products for different segments. This strategy can be worked in terms to outline the product feature or benefit in different manner or it can be done through set pricing on unique manner. At the same time, the marketing strategy also helps the firm to bring differentiation in the product presentation. Thus, differentiation strategy is utilised by the firm in various manner (Hahn and Powers, 2013). In today’s time, technology support is the one that create differentiation with ease. This strategy also provides a hedge against different markets and product life cycles, allowing cash flow to come in even if a few products decline while others grow or mature. Therefore, the differentiation strategy focuses on the brining of uniqueness among the brand so that they can outline itself different among the competition.

Focus strategy:-

This strategy is the one where brand focuses on niche market and it majorly include expensive products which consist of unique features which can’t be substituent by the local firms. This makes them differentiated and allows target audiences to focus upon. The company in a niche market has customers who understand, appreciate and pay premium for their indulgences. Competitive advantage either by cost or differentiation is created for the niche and both the risks are that niche may now grow or it may disappear with time and change.

On the basis of above generic strategy, it is found that Study Active is at cost leadership strategy as it keep its e-learning cost quite reasonable due to which it enjoy large customer base. Even the use of online services allows them to cut the majority of expenses related to physical place to run the training program or administration related expenses. These all savings help them to improve its online services (Alstete, 2014). The cost leadership strategy is suited well to the firm as it helps them to engage larger students and allows them to outline about the employment opportunities in this field. Post-Pandemic, student become feel more attracted towards the fitness industry and try to learn from basic to advance about the fitness regime. This kind of practice allows today’s generation to hire the personal fitness coach and able to become healthy and fit. This would be the great sources to promote the healthy generation. When it comes to competitors like PT academic, it is found that it utilised differentiation strategy through use both Gym and online training. It even explored Asian market with online services. These significances clearly showed the limitation of Study Active in terms to lack in making different from its competitors (Tanwar, 2013). That’s why, it become important for today’s business to adapt the differentiation strategy so that it could cover the larger market share as without this, it won’t be survive for long.

Bowman’s Strategy Clock

This tool is developed by the two famous economists i.e. Cliff bowman and David Faulkner. The purpose of the model is to make the companies aware of their position in the market as compared to its competitors. The model is purely based on marketing that helps companies to analyze their position in market. According to Bowman, the factor of competitive advantage is then the factor of cost advantage (Echchakoui, 2018). Basically, the model believed that strategic positioning or overall positioning of product is different. Both are useful to bring distinctive approach to the business.

(Sources: Bhasin, 2019)

The Bowman’s strategy clock outlines about the aspects related how company can position its product or service offerings in the market based on two dimensions. First is about price while perceived value of product, service and overall brand are important to undertake. As per the clock, there are eight strategies existing in four quadrants and the selection is done as per the nature of organization. In context to Study Active, it is identified that it is more into low price and added value strategy where it focuses on e-learning for imparting knowledge about the fitness regime to the PT students for making fitness field as their professional career. However, the keeping of low price is also become easy for the firm as it functions its operations through use of online platform (Eyvrigh, 2016). This allows them to reduce the expenses of taking land or develop institution for the education imparting. Thus, these areas save larger investment of firm which helps them to cut-down the cost. This adds value as low price of courses allows student to take part and enhance their knowledge about the fitness and this could support them to make their professional career or use the learning for their self-health analysis. So, the price factor helped the firm to position it as affordable online courses which offer multiple modules. These modules covered each aspect of human body from how to become fit or how to stay mental fit etc. this low cost strategy worked so well for firm to create right perception about the services in the mind of individuals. The application of this framework in this model supports the firm to gain competitive advantage. But this benefit will be limit until unless firm does not constant in bring continuous improvement in its services or adapt the innovative practices to give strong threat to competitors like PT academic and many more. the competitor of Study Active also utilising same strategy of keeping low price to increase value so it can be stated that its services become substitute which could not support them to bring differentiation (Nunes et al., 2021). In that case, it become must to undertake the right innovation or new strategies to become distinct among the competitors.

BCG Matrix

BCG matrix indicating Boston Consulting Group consists of graphical presentation of company products and services in an effort to help in decision-making about what it should keep sell or invest in. basically, it allows business to figure out which of its product is at growth level or other have only contain expenses to firm (Madsen, 2017). BCG matrix comprises of four aspects within which diverse product or services of a firm are evaluated. These aspects are Star, Question Mark, Cash Cow and Dog etc. each of the four quadrants represents a specific combination of relative market share and growth.

Low growth and High share: – It indicates that company should focus on “cash cows” for cash to reinvest.

High growth and High share: – It signifies that company should significantly invest in these stars as they have future potential.

High growth and low share: – It indicates that company should invest in or discard these “question marks”, depending on their chances of becoming stars.

Low share and Low growth: – It signifies that companies should liquidate, divest or reposition these pets.

Hence, it can be seen that product/service value is largely depend upon whether these areas helps company to obtain leasing share of its market before growth slows. All product/ services will eventually become either cash cows or pets (Guță, 2017). Pets are unnecessary as they are evidence of failure to either obtain a leadership position or to get out and cut the losses.

(Sources: MSG, 2021)

In respect to Study Active, the services are diversified as per the BCG quadrants in order to identify the growth rate of its services in present scenario in comparison to its competitors.

Stars: – Study Active operates in a market that shows potential in the future as e-learning are the major sources of income. The firm vertical integration with other firms in the supply chain is making its fitness services into star level. Likewise, Study Active has been linking with many gyms and fitness organizations across the UK and many of which help with their own continuing-education and credentials. This kind of partnership practice allows firm to get high market share and growth rate.

Question mark:- In case of Study Active, the question mark services are related to the focusing on healthy food line. It is found that Active is tied up with food brands to provide healthy food options to the trainers to make their body fit and able to learn about the healthy food consumptions (Fadrian and Arifin, 2018). But this practice helps the firm to get the market growth rate in the form of increasing awareness about the healthy eating or lifestyle but not support to achieve market share.

Cash Cow:- Study Active is gaining return over its investment in e-learning’s functions as it get lot of younger people support in terms to join their courses and make career in the fitness field. This helps them to achieve larger market share but when it come to constant growth rate then the increasing competition in present market especially in fitness industry. however, post-pandemic definitely create a sense of awareness about the healthy eating among the people and this has definitely increase the market share for fitness firms like Active programs as well to learn about the low calorie or right food groups. But still it did not support the firm to achieve the growth rate due to existences of cut-throat competition.

Dogs:- This category include the lacking of Study Active in regards to the creation of environmental awareness as it serves recognition about the significances of healthy lifestyle or food consumption but not justified about the actions to take up for the eco-friendly environment. However, it is expected that the market will grow in the future with environmental changes that are occurring. The recommended strategy for Study Active is to invest in the business enough to convert into a cash cow. This will ensure profits for the firm if the market starts growing again in the future.

On the basis of BCG matrix, it can be stated that firm is lacking in its various services like healthy food consumption services along with the limit its services to e-courses so such restricted the people to not expose with the firm own gym chains as firm largely depend upon the partnership when it comes to provide gym facilities. these can be the reason due to which it could fail so Active need to ensure that it start to explore more services in Gym segment apart from e-learning (Gite and Kumar Roy, 2014). At the same time, it need to retrench the food service learning from its e-course instead of this try to focus on making start-up in food canteen business to provide people with healthy food joints. This will allow people to not only learn or even enjoy about the healthy food groups.

Conclusion

From the above study, it is concluded that Study Active is performing well in present scenario especially the time of pandemic where e-learning is in current trends. The imparting knowledge to PT students about the fitness regime or healthcare equipments would help them to make their professional career. However, the organization also focuses on several partnership to provide practical training to student so that they can learn about the use of gym equipments or able to train their clients on best possible manner. apart from this, firm is also indulged in low costing services due to it majorly deal with online channel so it become easy for firm to cut-down the cost. in context to its competitors like PT academic, Train fitness and HFE etc, the Study Active is lacking somewhere as it didn’t explore the international market yet as well as firm in-spite of having leading position in UK didn’t introduce its own gym or fitness chain. These kinds of areas could influences the firm present or future market share. This is because of constant increase in competition or technology innovation which could fade the position of Active. That’s why it is definitely need to adapt new changes in its existing services through increase its sustainability. The use of strategic tools provides in-depth knowledge about the strategies or factors related to Study Active. This practice helps to track the current performances of firm. Thus, the evaluation based on the selected tools proven best to reach on the relevant decision in respect to internal or external operations.

Recommendations

On the basis of above analysis, these are the recommendation to bring improvement

  • To use of partner-based entry into international market would be useful for firm to explore new market for exceeding its operations.
  • To adapt social-media strategy for bringing lot of local or international people attention and the posting of blog content would help to get more space in the mind of people in comparison to its competitors.
  • To recommend about the introduction of its own gym or fitness centres would help to grab more customers and bring changes in its fitness learning at any time.
  • To equally focus on the offline learning is also important so opening of training centre would help more people to connect with the firm.
  • Outdoor workouts are also important for the student to learn as solely gym or healthy food consumption does not work worthy but the outdoor activities like running or games i.e. football or cricket also consider as a best cardio. This helps the student to learn about each aspect of healthy or fit body.

Therefore, the utilisation of these suggestions would help Study Active to explore more markets or growth in near future. This would allow them to gain higher customer base as compare to its competitors and it gives sustainability in both present and future scenario.

References

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Dawes, J., 2018. The Ansoff matrix: A legendary tool, but with two logical problems. But with Two Logical Problems (February 27, 2018).

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