Topic 4 segmentation,targeting and positioning

mpk732Ikea employs market segmentation strategy where the products are towards a particular target market. This means that the products in Ikea aims to attract a particular market segment than the mass market (Steenkamp & Ter Hofstede, 2002). One of the bases of segmentation is to market the product sustainability. This means that the product is built in a manner so that the product is able to meet the needs and demands of that market whilst still caring for the environment and the future generation (http://www.ikea.com/ms/en_HK/the_ikea_story/people_and_the_environment/sustainable_products.html). By adopting a ‘greens’ approach, Ikea appeals to the market that is concerned about the environment (Bridges & Wilhelm, 2008). For example, the electricity products of Ikea are energy efficient where the electricity consumption is relatively lower than the general electricity products in the market. Apart from that, there are products that are designed to save water consumption and reduce waste space during transportation and consumption. The foldable sofa is an example of this space saving idea that is easy to use and easy to carry around and install as per the picture below:

Based on the market segmentation strategy, the target market of Ikea is towards the younger consumers who are focused towards lifestyle and space saving. There are different consumers that make up this target market. The first type of consumers are those younger consumers who are just starting out in life where they may be just moving to a new place or apartment or that the younger consumers are couples who decide to move in together. These consumers have a low budget and the concept to save the world because they are concerned about the future and environment. These younger consumers have the appetite to technology and modern style (Wei, 2006). The second type of consumers are the students market who are looking for those products that can provide convenience to their existing lifestyle. The characteristics of this target market is typically lower income since they are not in the workforce yet and that they have a simple approach towards useability and practicality. The students want something that can solve their daily needs without much hassles. The third target market is the older customers. This type of customers wants something that is light and not too bulky because the older customers tend to be downsizing. This means that they are selling out of their previous residence and moving into an apartment style living for comfort and security. Therefore, these customers are seeking the simple products that can provide the comfort. Besides, the older customers tend to have a ‘green’ approach to their lifestyle where they want to be environmentally friendly for the future generation.

Based on this target market, Idea needs to position the products accordingly so that they are able the meet the needs. To achieve this, the products are designed to suit the needs of this target market. This is observed through the simple and minimalist approach from the Ikea products (Blome, 2015). Ikea does not aim to provide the highest quality product that is made up of solid materials that are able to last a long time. Rather, Ikea aims to provide the simple products that are tested against durability. This is observed within the Ikea store that aims to educate the consumers that the products may be relatively cheaper but it does not mean that the products are not durable. Also, there are different use of technology throughout the Ikea store that uses the advanced programs to assist the consumers to determine the appropriate products. These programs are able to provide the customers with a picture of how the final results will be when those different Ikea products are combined together (Blome, 2015). This technology approach appeals to this target market.

References

Blomé, M. (2015). Visualization and establishment of product design regulations as interactive modules: An interaction design study at IKEA. Journal of Systems and Information Technology, 17(1), 20-34.

Bridges, C. M., & Wilhelm, W. B. (2008). Going beyond green: The “why and how” of integrating sustainability into the marketing curriculum. Journal of Marketing Education, 30(1), 33-46.

Steenkamp, J. B. E., & Ter Hofstede, F. (2002). International market segmentation: issues and perspectives. International Journal of Research in Marketing, 19(3), 185-213.

Wei, R. (2006). Lifestyles and new media: Adoption and use of wireless communication technologies in China. New media & society, 8(6), 991-1008.

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