Apple Inc. Company Research - Essay Prowess

Apple Inc. Company Research


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Apple Inc. Company Research


This report explores findings from the research conducted on Apple Inc. The report starts with situational analysis where it explores the company and country overview. The company is headquartered in the United States but have operations in many countries around the globe. The Apple Company operates in a number of industries such as personal computer and smartphone. Various competitors in each of the segment are explained in details in this report. This reports further details the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that Apple Company faces. Sales force of the organization is discussed as well as the channels the company uses. This research finds that Apple is moving in the right direction having strengths that it can capitalize on. However, the company faces some threats such as competition and limitation that it need to overcome.



Apple Inc. The company is one of the organizations that is doing well in the face of the fierce completion in the global market. Producing various innovative products like iPod, iPhone, Mac OS X software among others, the company is catching it competitors by surprise. For a company to succeed as Apple Inc. is doing there is a need to undertake a situational analysis to understand various environments the company is operating in. It is also important to undertake the SWOT analysis of the company, understand the Sale Force Organization, Sales Channel, and Customer Relationship Marketing. This research focusses on Apple Inc. to understand these variables.


Company and Country Overview

Apple Inc. is an international company headquartered in the United States. The company ventures in many products including computer software, cell phones, personal computers as well as consumer electronic products. The most popular products produced by the Apple Company include the iPod, the iPhone, the Macintosh line of computers and the iPad. Apple also sells some popular software including Mac OS X, which is an operating system, iOS, a mobile operating system. By 2010, the company was operating over three hundred and one retail store in 10 countries.  The company’s existence dates back to April 1976. Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak founded the company in Cupertino, California and was initially called Apple Computer Inc., before dropping the name computer in January 2007 (Business Insider, 2013). The founders initially introduced Apple I computer in the same year they founded the company, but the product failed. They embarked on another product, Apple II that they produced in 1980 and this time they recorded success (Linzmayer, 2004).

Political environment

Apple Company is a multinational company operating in many counties all over the world. This implies that it is affected by situations even outside the United States, its home country. In the political environment, Apple is affected by various factors. Apple Inc. is among  the American multinationals that has amassed a hefty amount of wealth recording over $34.7 billion in financial institutions by June 2015. Such huge amount of cash is leading to calls for increased commercial taxation in United Sates, with income disparity becoming a key political concern. The organization also depends highly on low manufacturing cost in China and therefore the company risks disruptions emanating from social and political unrest in the country (Gough & Chen, 2014). Another political impact to the company is its close relationship with China, which may develop to a big issue in the United States and Japan if the two countries view China as a threat (Morrison, 2011).

Economic Environment

In terms of economic aspects, rise in labor cost in China is feared to absorb the cost benefit of some of the Apple products produced there. Stagnating incomes of middle-class people in some nations with the inclusion of the Mother country, the United States, is also an economic factor affecting Apple as this is having a negative impact on the market for high-end products. Strengthening of U.S. dollar could prove a double edge sword with increasing exchange rates making it hard for the company to operate in key markets such as Europe and China (Morrison, 2011).

Culture and social environment

In terms of culture and social environment factors such as strong emotional attachment to the Company’s product is becoming important. As the company enters high growth countries such as African countries, lack of the emotional attachment that exist in countries such as the United States becomes a challenge.  In Europe and the United States, expensive and stylish products by the company are starting to get a backlash (Zastrow & Kirst-Ashman, 2006). Another cultural factor is Apple’s music marketing strategy, which has created some resentment in some areas and attracted criticism from major recording stars.


Apple Company operates in different industries and has different competitors in each of the industry. In the personal computers industries, the company has created loyal customers who are reporting high satisfaction of the company’s products (O’Grady, 2009). In spite of this, the company is facing stiff competition from companies such as Dell, Hewlett-Packard (HPQ), Acer as well as Lenovo. In Mobile computers industry, the iPod have transformed the business model of the company and stimulated a whole industry of mobile computing imitators. Though the company has maintained the market leadership, it has endured great competition from Google, Samsung, Nokia and Asus (Schneiders, 2011). In smartphone industry, the company’s iPhone took the market by storm though it faces competition from Huawei, Samsung, Sony, HTC and Lenovo. The table in Appendix 1 shows Apple’s Cellphone competitors in 2011 and 2012.

SWOT Analysis


Strengths are those competencies that the company possess and gives it an advantage over the others (Leigh & Pershing, 2006). Apple’s major strengths include solid brand image, high profits margins  in addition to Effective process of innovation. Apple is among the most valued and strongest brands globally, which gives the company ability to introduce profitable new products at will. The company is also able to maintain a premium pricing strategy allowing not only to make more profits but also to be able to adjust prices. Effective innovation enables Apple Company to keep-up-to-date with the technology, which is a key determinant of competitive advantage.


Weaknesses refer to internal inadequacies within an organization that disadvantages it among its competitors (Leigh & Pershing, 2006). The most notable weaknesses of Apple Inc. includes Inadequate distribution network, high prices of their offerings and sales being confined to just high-end market. The distribution network of the company is limited by the company’s exclusivity strategy. The high prices charged puts off most potential customers leaving only high-end consumers (Jackson, 2013).


This refers to the factors outside the control of the company but which the company can utilize to its own advantage. The opportunities that Apple can exploit includes growing Demand for tablets as well as smartphones, availability of a market for expansion and availability of room for more innovation. The world demand for smartphones is on the rise, and Apple can use its innovation to develop more products. The company can also expand its distribution channel, as the market still exist.


Threats are factors outside the company’s control that put the company at a disadvantage. Some notable threats that Apple faces include aggressive rivalry, imitation and rising cost of labor in the republics Apple products are produced (Jackson, 2013). The company is facing stiff competition from companies such as Samsung, which also utilizes hasty innovation. The Apple products are also being imitated by some competitors eating on their revenues and damaging the brand. The increasing labor costs in countries such as China where the products are produced is pushing the cost of production up further increasing the prices of the products.

Sales force of the organization

Sales force organization refers to the process in which sales resources are allocated with an intention of meeting sales as well as marketing objectives (Zoltners, et al. 2004). Apple Company have a strong sale force organization. The sales organization in the company is organized such that it provides account as well as geographic coverage, ensure proper utilization of resources and time and ensures higher chances of attaining sales quotas. The sale force of the company is structured to align with the general strategy adopted by the sales and marketing department in the organization. As the company continues expanding its products, the sale force is organized along regional lines.

The company also allocates sales resources to sales territories as their customers are distributed in different regions such as Africa, Europe, Asia, America and so on. The company, therefore, divide the sales force by convenient geographical groupings. The sale force Organization of Apple also takes into consideration its skills and specializations and organizes its sales force in terms of the product lines. The company hires sales representatives who possess good technical knowledge of the products so that they can assist customers when necessary. The company also develops relationships with marketing, which enables it to develop lead generation programs, which enhance quality of sales force prospecting (O’Grady, 2009).


Sales channels and customer relationship (CRM)

Apple Company sells its products globally by utilization of many different channels. The company has retails stores spread out globally in the countries it operates. The company also utilizes online stores where consumers can order the products online. Other channels include direct sales force and third-party cellular network carriers. Moreover, the Apple Company make use of wholesalers, retailers, small and medium-sized enterprises and creative markets.

Customer Relationship Marketing refers to the union of customer services, quality, and marketing (Ernst et al., 2011). The emphasis of CRM is on retention of customers, forming long-term relationships with customers, improving service offering to customers as well as increasing level of contact with the consumers of the company’s products. The chief objective of CRM is thus knowing the customer better so as to deliver advanced, more appropriate and higher value added to the customer. For Apple, the company understand the importance of quality to their customer and makes it the priority in their products. This leads to high satisfaction ratings for their products as shown in Appendix 2.

Apples ability to retain long-term relationship with customers is also is the customer’s experience they provide their potential customers. Apple ensures their customers do not purchase their products until they get a good understanding and love the product. This explains why the company store is built as a place the potential customers are able to come and experience the products. The sales employees of the company make it a primary goal to ensure every customer gets a magical and memorable experience regardless of whether they make a purchase (Ernst et al., 2011).

Conclusion and Findings

With retail stores spread across eighteen countries and online stores in over 120 nations, Apple Company is definitely going in the right direction. The company has a wide range of products in different industries including personal computers, mobile computer as well as smartphones. It utilizes rapid innovation, which allows it to be ahead of competitors when it comes to bringing new products to the market. Its strong brand recognition ensures that company is able to sell the new products, as the customers are ready to buy them.

The study of the Company’s SWOT analysis reveals that the company is in possession of major strengths which if used in the best way can address the noted weaknesses. The strengths identified can also be used in the exploitation of existing opportunities such as expansion of the company’s distribution channels. This research also found that the company has a strong brand image and rapid innovation processes, which it can combine to develop successfully and launch new product lines. The report, however, found the company has some notable threats including threats of aggressive completion and imitation of their products. The company can overcome this by having a solider patent assortment in addition to unceasing innovation to keep competitors at bay.

In terms of sale force organization, the company structures its sales force in alignment with the overall strategy of the sales and marketing department. As the company continues expanding its products, the sale force is organized along regional lines. The company also allocates sales resources in terms of the regions it operates. The sales force have good knowledge of the products lines they are put to be responsible for. The company utilizes various channels including retail stores, online stores, wholesalers, retailers among others. The company believes in creating good relationships with its customers and therefore applies a good Customer Relationship Marketing



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