Introduction The paper critically analyses the strategic nature of marketing in action of Microsoft Corporation is an American computing firm, established in 1975 that offers a wide range of computing products and services through several product divisions. The public multinational corporation has its headquarters in the United States, Washington and supports, manufactures, develops and licenses computing products. The company has employed varied marketing strategies, which has ensured that the company has grown from a single product, BASIC interpreters for the Altair 8800, to be the leading software house globally with several products. The company has adopted varied marketing strategies and has embraced other products apart from the predominant software such as Xbox 360, which serves the video game industry, and Zune for the digital services market and consumer electronics as well as Windows Phone OS for the PC tablets.
Background information on Microsoft’s strategy Microsoft is the leading software developer globally; the company’s products such as Windows operating system and the office suite have a global market share of more than 90 percent. Whereas some researchers have argued that the quality of Microsoft’s products is the main reason for the huge market share, others are of the opinion that the success of the company is due to its marketing strategies (Currie 2004).
Microsoft’s marketing strategies have attracted both admonition and admiration in equal measure. Critics of the company in the last decade argue that the company has used anti-competitive strategies and monopolistic business practices as strategies such as tying and refusal to deal. The company supporters however maintain that Microsoft is utilising varied marketing strategies in a competitive environment. Microsoft is among the most profitable companies globally. The role of the marketing strategies in contributing to the growth has been controversial, in that the company has employed dynamism such that it has substantially increased and expanded its product range while spurring demand from software consumers as presented by (Harold, 2009).
Several factors have influenced the company’s strategies in the past including the globalization of business, the growth and advancement of the Internet, the rise and fall of competitors and the changes in technology. The company has contributed to the technological changes; ironically, it has been affected by the changes Donna, (2005).
Microsoft’s marketing strategy has varied with time; the company has however maintained a cohesive, comprehensive and integrated, marketing strategy, (Grassley, 2004). The strategies implemented by the company over the years share a common characteristic such as effecting well-researched marketing tactics, having measurable marketing objectives, which can be evaluated by the company’s management and investors through specific numerical goals and objectives. The strategies have also focused in identifying precise target markets, determining the company’s products competitive positioning, developing and enhancement of specific elements of the marketing mix and detailing secretive core marketing strategies that leave competitors guessing on the company’s next move.
Critical Examination of Microsoft’s Marketing Strategy Microsoft Windows Strategy Microsoft has different products. The company has a company wide marketing strategy through suite marketing, as well as product specific dynamic strategies. Windows Operating System maintains more than ninety percent market share. Microsoft has adopted different strategies depending on the marketing situations and scenario, to ensure that Windows maintains an immense market share.