1984 1988 Two engineering students - Mike Lazaridis (University of Waterloo) The company becomes the first and Douglas Fregin (University of wireless data technology Windsor) - co-found Research in developer in North America. TheMotion. The company was set up as technology is mainly used for an electronics and computer business communications, suchscience consulting business based in as processing credit-card sales. Waterloo. 1992 The focus shifted to two-way wireless communication when the research staff 1996 found a way to send messages back as RIM introduces its first well. wireless handheld, theJim Balsillie joins RIM, putting $250,000 of Inter@ctive Pager. his own money into the company. 1997 1998RIM is listed on the Toronto Stock RIM introduces its first BlackBerry, a wireless Exchange as a publicly traded handheld computer. It offered a six-line display and allowed basic e-mail and two-way paging. RIM iscompany - and raises more than ranked as one of Canadas fastest-growing technology $115 million from investors. companies.
1999RIM is listed on the NASDAQ exchange. The company November 2000 RIM raises another $950 millionraises another $250 million through a share offering. to develop its BlackBerry technology. 2002 2007RIM upgrades the BlackBerry to include RIM announces that its voice and data transmission. E-mailcapabilities are improved so users can BlackBerry subscriber list has access multiple e-mail accounts. passed the 10-million mark. October 2007 Alcatel-Lucent announces an agreement to distribute BlackBerrysmartphones in China. The news sends RIM shares up eight per cent, making RIM the most valuable company in Canada, based on market capitalization
GROWTH OVER THE YEARS OperatingYear Sales Net Income Income 2002 294,000,000 58,000,000 28,000,000 2003 307,000,000 64,000,000 149,000,000 2004 595,000,000 78,000,000 52,000,000 2005 1,350,000,000 386,000,000 206,000,000 2006 2,066,000,000 617,000,000 375,000,000 2007 3,037,000,000 807,000,000 632,000,000 2008 6,009,000,000 1,731,000,000 1,294,000,000 2009 11,065,000,000 2,722,000,000 1,893,000,000 2010 14,953,000,000 3,507,000,000 2,457,000,000 2011 19,907,000,000 4,639,000,000 3,444,000,000
SELECTED PRODUCT LINE RIM’s most notable product is easily a mobile device dubbed the“BlackBerry”. This revolutionary smartphone has implemented itself into the everyday lifestyle of millions of individuals in over 140 countries.
THE SMARTPHONE MARKET -THE CURRENT SCENARIO A smartphone was defined as a mobile phone that offers more advancedcomputing ability and connectivity than a contemporary basic featured phone. For e.g.: Apple iPhone, Blackberry, Nokia’s high-end series.
PRIMARY RESEARCH• As part of our project, a survey was conducted on a sample of 56 individuals, from the age group 15-55, comprising 21 males and 25 females.• The survey, although conducted on a small scale, shows some emerging trends and demographics. The results were as follows:
OUR ANALYSIS OF THE SURVEY• Smartphones are still a niche market, though there is huge scope for expansion.• Nokia and RIM (BlackBerry) are dominant players in the Indian smartphone market, while Apple is a core competitor.• Indian smartphone users spend more time on the Internet than on traditional voice calls and SMS of that time goes into gaming, entertainment, and Internet.• Traditional voice calls and text messaging take a mere 8% of the time, and the rest of the time is spent on social networking and instant messaging.
• The common user considers BlackBerry’s BBM service to be its core competence, and a differentiating factor from other smartphones available in the market.• The smartphones manufacturing companies’ target market is slowly shifting from ‘professionals-only’ to a mix of professionals and general users.• The given mix of responders agreed to the fact that if given a chance, and if their financial status permits, they would buy a BlackBerry device without hesitations.• Though Nokia is a dominant player even now, its numbers over the years are fast declining, and competitors like RIM and Apple are catching up very fast.• Nokia is still preferred by buyers with a purse of below 10,000 rupees. But when the limit goes beyond that a drastic shift is seen towards smartphones from Apple and BlackBerry devices.
STUDY OF THE SELECTED PRODUCT LINE Introduction• Research In Motion (RIM) is a global leader in wireless innovation, which revolutionized the mobile industry with the introduction of the BlackBerry® solution in 1999.• It is a Canadian global telecommunications company headquartered in Waterloo, Ontario, that designs, manufactures and markets wireless solutions for the worldwide mobile communications market.• RIM provides platforms and solutions for access to information, including e-mail, voice, instant messaging, short message service (SMS), Internet and intranet-based applications and browsing.• RIM’s portfolio includes the BlackBerry wireless solution, the RIM Wireless Handheld product line, software development tools and other software and hardware.• The BlackBerry product line includes the BlackBerry® PlayBook™ tablet, the award-winning BlackBerry smartphone, software for businesses and accessories. BlackBerry products and services are used by millions of customers around the world on a daily basis.
Marketing Mix: The 4 Ps of Blackberry THE PRODUCTBlackBerry is a line of wireless handheld devices developed by theCanadian company, Research In Motion (RIM).The BlackBerry Smart Phone supports the following features: • Push e-mail • Mobile telephone • Instant messaging features: BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) • Text messaging • Internet faxing • Web browsing • Multi-touch interface • Other wireless information services
• Blackberry models in India include: ▫ BlackBerry 8300 Series (Curve) ▫ BlackBerry Pearl ▫ BlackBerry Bold ▫ BlackBerry Torch ▫ BlackBerry Bold 3G, etc.• BlackBerry holds the worlds second highest market share in the smart phone platform. The consumer BlackBerry Internet Service is available in 91 countries worldwide on over 500 mobile service operators using various mobile technologies.• As of September 2011, there were seventy million BlackBerry users.
BLACKBERRY MESSENGERBlackBerry devices use the proprietary BlackBerry Messenger, also known asBBM, software for sending and receiving instant messages via BlackBerry PIN.Blackberry Messenger is one of the fastest messengers on a smartphone.
PRICE• BlackBerry Bold 9900 – Rs.32,290• BlackBerry Pearl 8120 – Rs.24,229• BlackBerry Pearl 3g 9100 – Rs.16,333• BlackBerry Curve 9300 3g – Rs.13,597• BlackBerry Torch 2 9810 – Rs.25,000• BlackBerry Curve 8520 – Rs.9,199 (As on October 2011)BlackBerry has strategically placed smartphones in all price ranges, as well as with different featuresto suit different needs. They have given people the option to choose from a variety of modelsaccording to their need and budget, while maintaining the availability of signature features likeBlackBerry Messenger and Push-Mail service in all the brands so that the essence of having aBlackBerry can be experienced by all the users across different budget ranges.• “A variety of flexible tariff plans to choose from, thus making it easy for young fans to turn BlackBerry loyalists. We have built up a portfolio at different price points to target different segments of consumers,” Krishnadeep Baruah, • Director (Marketing), RIM India.
BlackBerry is currently available for sale in the following countries: American Virgin Islands French Guiana Malaysia Anguilla Finland Malta San Marino Antigua and Barbuda Former Yugoslav Martinique Serbia & Montenegro Argentina Republic of Mexico Singapore Aruba Macedonia (FYROM) Moldova Slovakia Australia France Monaco Slovenia Austria Germany Montserrat South Africa Bahamas Greece Netherlands Spain Barbados Grenada Netherlands Antilles St. Kitts and Nevis Belgium Guadeloupe New Zealand St. Lucia Bermuda Guam Norway St. Vincent and the Grenadines Brazil Guyana Panama Suriname British Virgin Islands Hong Kong Paraguay Sweden Canada Hungary Peru Switzerland Cayman Islands Iceland Poland Trinidad and Tobago Chile India Portugal Turkey China Indonesia Puerto Rico Turks and Caicos Islands Colombia Ireland Romania United Kingdom Cyprus Isle of Man Russia Ukraine Czech Republic Italy Saint Eustatius United States Denmark Jamaica Saint Martin Uruguay Dominica Japan Saint Pierre Vatican City Ecuador Latvia Saint-Barthelemy Venezuela Estonia Liechtenstein Saba
The Indian Perspective• As per data released by IDC, Nokia holds a strong 45.8% market share in smartphone shipments, followed by Samsung’s 21%. Research in Motion, the maker of Blackberry phones has a 15% market share. The top 3 manufacturers together, have a 81.9% market share, leaving a paltry 18% to the likes of Apple, LG, Motorola and Sony Ericsson.
• When we analysed the Indian market, we found that Blackberry sales are restricted to the high-end urban market. This may be due to varied demands of a differentiated society. But in the college space as well as the corporate sector, BlackBerry has become a rage, with students and professionals alike preferring Blackberry over most other brands.• The reason for the paltry numbers for brands like Apple is the heavy pricing which renders most customers unable to buy them. Various other brands like Motorola and Samsung still suffer from lack of customer confidence and loyalty, which Nokia strongly leverages and enjoys.• Excellent after sales services have been a strong point for Nokia, which BlackBerry is fast catching up with.• The Indian market can be broadly divided into two sectors; the urban and rural markets. Both these markets differ drastically in terms of needs, demands, financial orientation and necessity of the consumers.
THE DIFFERENTIATED INDIAN MARKET • Business uses • Latest applications for theUrban business user • Advanced features andUsers applications • Lifestyle • Status symbol • Affordability • ConnectivityRural • Battery LifeUsers • • Network expansion Low tariffs • Lucrative Offers
PROMOTION• TARGET MARKETS BlackBerry has divided its target market into two basic segments: Enterprise customers Non-Enterprise customers BlackBerry was a "company decision". BlackBerry was a “personal decision”. Enterprise customers Non-Enterprise customers High end users Aged 15-25 years Aged 25+ years Mainly students Mainly mid to senior level management Individuals who use it for personal or professionals entertainment purposes Cosmopolitan Professionals who use it for Youth which will have financial power office purpose tomorrow Both males and females Both males and females Tier I cities Tier I citiesBlackBerry has already established leadership Today, it has a range of models targeted at everyposition in this segment. possible consumer segment—senior management professionals, young executives, women, and even those who have barely crossed their teens.
MARKETING STRATEGY OF BLACKBERRY Youth Marketing Strategy• BlackBerry has been quick to understand the needs of its young customers.• In the last 8-10 months, this segment has grown phenomenally. This segment comprises the youth who do not have the financial power today but will have so tomorrow. This segment, which has a huge need to be connected, is growing for smartphones and specifically for BlackBerry.• So, while it has a range of pink, pearl and crimson models to entice women, there’s also a variety of flexible tariff plans to choose from, thus making it easy for young fans to turn BlackBerry loyalists.
Repositioning of The Product through advertising
‘Love what you do’This ad showcases every function of theBlackberry handset, inserting the tagline ‘love what you do’ on each one. ‘We’re the BlackBerry Boys’ The ‘BlackBerry’ Boys advertisement created by Ogilvy and Mather in 2010 said it all—this smartphone brand wasn’t meant only for stuffy corporate suits—the young and the savvy in India were naturally inclined to this high-end gizmo.
CONCLUSIONAll the above adsseem to have acommon theme.Black Berry hasset out to target ayounger, morefun-focusedconsumer.It can beconcluded that theBlackBerry brandis repositioningitself, as itsprimary audienceis no longercorporates.
Use of Digital Media• BlackBerry has been working hard over the last one year on the BlackBerry India website. The Blackberry India fan page on Facebook has 900,000 fans. Its India Twitter page allows people to get updates on the brand and stay connected with the latest news.BlackBerry’s marketing strategy for thenear term• BlackBerry will continue to address the high-end consumer segment and the youth. They plan to launch some new features and products catering to a more diverse group of individuals.• Beyond that, BlackBerry is also working on enhancing the product experience for the consumer. Its idea is that people should be able to walk into the nearest store and experience the product.
CHALLENGESBlackBerry has contended with being pigeonholed as a strictly business and professional product since its early roots. This stereotype has helped to define BlackBerry as a stable, reliable and practical tool. On the otherhand, it has limited its own target market by keeping the static business image. Nokia was the 1st foreign player to enter the Indian market in 1995. • It gained its foothold by offerings basic mobile phones in affordable price ranges. • Brand Focus: • Gaming options • Multimedia • GPRS • Faster Internet options 2001 – Sony Ericsson enters the Indian market Introduced affordable Smartphones in the market such as hi-tech multimedia features, camera phones, design phones, music phones, and web and email phones.
Why BlackBerry Won Against APPLE Sales for the world’s biggest company by market value, APPLE, are hindered by RIM. Apple shipped 62,043 iPhones to India in the quarter ending June 30, or fewer than to Norway, Belgium or Israel, according to estimates by Framingham, Massachusetts-based researcher IDC.
Why BlackBerry Won Against APPLEReasons• Apple products aren’t as accessible in India.• The poor sales figures for Apple smartphones has been attributed to Indian wireless carriers.• Blackberry users have defended its utility over the iPhone.• Moreover, Blackberry has a price range which appeals to wider range of customers
SUGGESTIONS Problem CausesTo Develop a balance • No carrier is owned by RIM • Carriers are concerned withbetween business use their own profitand recreational use • No ownership of their stores Solutions • Diversification of the product • Product Depth • Market Development • Aggressive Promotion
SWOT ANALYSIS Strengths WeaknessesWorld’s largest wireless design group Limited product line; only carries smartphones Risky foreign operationsCredible organization Weak launches of different phone types, eg. TheHigh product value of the BlackBerry line BlackBerry flip phoneQWERTY keyboard feature on the Restrictive image of a product for professionals.smartphones Faces a “strictly businesss” stereotype, hence issuesBlackBerry messenger in repositioning. Limited market reach due to initial branding ofSureType and SurePress feature RIM as “a business professional tool,” Opportunities ThreatsExpand product breadth Weakened economy due to the recessionGrow on international expansion Possibility of becoming a passing trendExpanding depth in the smartphone line Competition, more smartphone options, for example, the iPhone vs. BlackBerry StormDevelop and diversify marketing strategies Reliance on retailer carriers alone toAppeal to new markets promote their products
RECOMMENDED PLAN OF ACTION• Taking all alternatives into account, we have made the decision to implement a more concentrated and aggressive marketing development strategy.• RIM BlackBerry’s plan of action will target their already existing client i.e. senior executives and young professionals, alongside a younger and more recreational based consumer, known as Generation Y. By aiming their sights on up and coming consumers, RIM can build upon relationships with their target market from a young age and develop their sustainability as a company simultaneously.• RIM will actualize a new promotional campaign to address these potential consumers and attract them with the use of advertisements through television, viral marketing, radio, billboards and magazines. Though these sources are already used to promote the BlackBerry, RIM can revamp how they advertise.• RIM must generate commercials that are brighter, more energetic, and most importantly, more memorable, thus appealing to a fresher audience. Another option for BlackBerry is product placement on television shows or films that appeal to the target audience. RIM will adopt a new way of thinking, and by cultivating an improved marketing development strategy, RIM can evolve as a brand and a corporation.