“Apple designs Macs, the best personal computers in the world, along with OS X, I Life, iWork and professional software. Apple leads the digital music revolution with its iPods and iTunes online store. Apple has reinvented the mobile phone with its revolutionary iPhone and App Store, and is defining the future of mobile media and computing devices with iPad.” (Apple, 2014)
“Apple designs Macs, the best personal computers in the world, along with OS X, I Life, iWork and professional software. Apple leads the digital music revolution with its iPods and iTunes online store. Apple has reinvented the mobile phone with its revolutionary iPhone and App Store, and is defining the future of mobile ...view middle of the document...
Forbes, (2014) suggests that Apple is the world’s most valuable Company with a value of $124.2 billion, reflecting Apple’s strong performance within today’s market. Apple is a US multinational corporation that designs, develops and sells consumer electronics, computer software and online services. Furthermore (Marketline, 2014) state that Apple recorded revenues of $183 million during the financial year ended September 2014 (FY2014). However a more in-depth analysis of Apple’s company and environment can be found in appendix one.
Identified by (Bhardwaj, 2007) “marketers in today’s markets are faced with finding new ways of increasing customer loyalty and retention. Transforming indifferent customers into loyal ones and establishing a long term relationship with customers is critical for organizational success”. It could be argued, in the dynamic, globalised, connected world of the 21st century finding and retaining customers is key in becoming successful. However many factors will affect the relationships Apple has with its customers. With a market share of 41.4% the theorist such (Bajarin, 2012)asks why Apple is so successful. Whilst Apple’s customer service and stores represent the gold standard for selling, the reasons why Apple are so successful is a ‘mystery to many’. He goes on to suggest elements such as the useable friendly products, great customer experience, great customer service or even the ability to touch the products. These are all methods of creating added value to generate customer loyalty.
(Ribeiro, et al., 2014) defines added value as “Products and price based transactions become supplemented with services and add-on facilities which gradually serve to create relationship which becomes of value to the buyer”. It could be argued that Ribeiro et al uses two of Kotler’s four Ps in Products and Price ignoring Place and Promotion. However with Apple it could be argued that price doesn’t have a place in Apples added value as they set fixed prices offering no deals or room to negotiate.
(Fahy & Jobber, 2012) States that adding value to Apples customers can improve their customer loyalty and firm performance through the relational bonds they create through their relationship marketing. Today, such bonds with customers can affect Apple by a domino effect through creating loyal customer base, in turn can be a form of advertising through word of mouth. Theorist from (Arnett & Badrinarayanan, 2005) and (Dwyer & Sivadas , 2000) suggest numerous factors that influence relationship marketing success, three factors consistently identified as important are trust, relationship and communication.
Trust and commitment theory
Trust and commitment theory identified by Dwyer etc, is believed to be a fundamental aspect to relationship marketing, as “relationship marketing involves creating links with customers by meeting their necessities and honouring commitments. Rather than chasing short-term profits, businesses following...