Apple Inc. is brand that anyone would recognize around the world. It designs, manufactures, and markets mobile communication and media devices, personal computers, and portable digital music players (Apple, 2011). The company sells its products worldwide through branded retail and online stores, as well as through third-party cellular network carriers, wholesalers, and retailers (Reisinger, 2008).
Even with Apples proven success records, one factor that I think Apple should consider as the company develops a long-term strategy for growth is to work on lowering its retail cost so it can offer its high-end products to a broader audience. As appeared in a Forbes article in February of this year, Toni Sacconaghi of Bernstein Research predicted that “Apple could increase its addressable handset market by 6X in unit volume and 2.5X in revenue with the launch of a smaller, less expensive iPhone model” (Hodgkins, 2011, para 1). In the same article, Sacconaghi also stated that Apple is missing 60 percent of the handset market using its current strategy because it is limited its distribution to select carriers and sells its iPhone at a high price (Hodgkins, 2011). Based on current price comparisons, Android based phones are selling for less than half of Apple's average iPhone selling price.
A second factor Apple should consider as the company develops a long-term strategy for growth is to work on a focus strategy to be able to attend to the needs of a particular market segment. “A firm pursing a focus strategy is willing to service isolated geographic areas; to satisfy the needs of customers with special financing, inventory, or servicing programs; or to tailor the product to the demands of the small- to –medium sized customer (Pearce & Robinson, 2011, p. 184). For example, Apple could target the college student audience and offer steep discounts to that market to capture a younger customer base. By tapping into that market segment with a lower price, odds are they will become brand loyal and will continue to buy higher-end products once they begin collecting a salary after college.
The learning and growth perspective identifies the infrastructure the organization, mainly focusing on three key areas, people, systems and organizational procedures that it must build to create long-term growth and improvement (Kaplan & Norton, 1996). Employees are a major intangible asset of any organization, because based on his or her internal skills and capabilities he or she is required to support the value-creating internal processes (Pearce & Robinson, 2011). An organization who identifies gaps between existing capabilities of people, systems, and procedures, can close those gaps by investing in re-skilling employees, improving IT and other support systems, and aligning organizational procedures.
The majority of Apple’s business strategy is organized around sales, product design, and worldwide manufacturing and operations, not around its human capital...