The integrated marketing plan here is very concerned with espousing an integrated strategy that is designed in order to enhance the current competitiveness of the Maxis mobile phone company through its service pack that it currently makes available to Malaysians. The Maxis company is one of the top performers within the Malaysian telecommunications industry. Until now, this market was dominated by Maxis but in these times, other mobile service providers have become more competitive and are competing on equal footing.
These competitors comprise of firms like DiGi and also Celcom. The service pack that is provided by Maxis comprises of a SIM card that enables the user of the cell phone to connect with other mobile phone users through their cell phones. Competitors like DiGi as well as Celcom do provide the same kind of service and are drawing more customers away from Maxis and they are gaining a larger market share. Due to this, it will be necessary to formulate this strategy to enable Maxis to become more competitive and to be the leader once again.
The macro-environment of Maxis is examined in this plan by using the business tools like PEST. The SWOT tool is used to also analyze the external and the internal business environment for Maxis. Through the use of these tools, it will be possible to get the required information to determine the type of strategies that need to be utilized to make Maxis competitive again. Maxis must give attention for the changes that take place within the external environment, to identify the elements and threats in the environment that are causing it to under-perform and that are restricting its progress.
There does need to be enhancements towards the service that it provides or else it will lose out to competitors like DiGi, that are gaining strength and popularity. The primary recommendation here will be to the effect that Maxis is to make enhancements to the Maxis service pack. The service pack will need to be enhanced through the use of customization and to cater to the needs of business users and recreational users as well. Recommendations are made about the price of the service pack, the promotional methods, the distribution and enhancements need to be made the product itself.
Maxis need to be more efficient when it comes to research and development of the new service pack and it has to pay more attention towards its competitors.
Integrated Marketing Plan Introduction
Maxis is a Company is leader in the industry concerning the providing of telecommunication services within Malaysia and it is starting to have a presence overseas as well. The domination of this company in the realm of mobile telecommunications services is now coming under threat from competitors like DiGi. that are fast growing ion popularity among Malaysian phone users.
The lack of competitiveness of Maxis has to be cured by making recommendations that will be contained within this marketing plan. Essentially, this plan will contain strategies that can make Maxis more competitive again and that will permit the company to leave its competition behind. Lack of strategic planning can be very bad for a company, especially when competitors are just wanting for the right time to deploy their strategies to annul the competitor. The strategic planner at Maxis has to plan through having the correct and accurate information concerning the macro-environment and the internal processes of the company.
It only with such knowledge that Maxis can solve the inefficiencies within its company and to take logical and accurate steps towards improving their competitive position in the industry. With this information, the strategist will be able to devise and deploy strategic initiatives that can enhance the performance of the company and to overtake its competition.
The Maxis Company Profile and Background
Maxis Communications Berhad, or known as the Maxis company for this report, is an organisation that is dealing in the business of providing various services that relate to the domain of telecommunications.
The Maxis Communications organisation is the subsidiary of Binariang GSM Sdn Bhd. This company is based in Malaysia and its headquarters are located in Kuala Lumpur. In addition to having operations in Malaysia, this company also has operations in countries like Indonesia and also in India. (Maxis Company Profile, 2010). This company was founded in 1995. After nearly 7 years, in 2002, this company made its appearance on the stock exchange. This company became a private company in 2007, when it was bought over by Binariang GSM Sdn Bhd for about $4. billion (Yahoo Finance – Company Profile for Maxis 2010). At the end of fiscal 2006, Maxis recorded revenues of about MYR7,706. 7 million and this was an increase of about 21% from 2005. The company’s operating profit stood at MYR2,836. 5 million in fiscal year 2006 and this was an increase of 16. 9% from 2005 (Companies and Markets – Maxis Communications SWOT Analysis, 2010).
Maxis does provides high speed internet services and various internet application services. These does include software related services. Far from its original business, the Maxis company does participate within the business of property letting (Maxis Company Profile, 2010). In accordance with its quest for more diversification, Maxis did take the initiative to launch a new kind of service which make it possible for users to be able to control their SMS, to automate it and also to personalize these services. This service does enable its users to block out SMS that are not solicited (IW– Maxis Company, 2010).
Mission Statement of Maxis
For the Maxis company, the main mission statement will be to construct a foundation that is firmly premised on important concepts like integrity, high level of commitment and superior vision when it comes to helping others to become successful. Maxis does appreciated that it is very commendable to effectively lead others towards the maximization of talents as well as their potential within the working environment.
What people at Maxis believe here is that such an adherence will likely to provide them with the ability to serve their customers and to continue to grow to a stronger position for the future (Maxis Company Mission Statement, 2010).
Thrust of the Integrated Marketing Plan Practically speaking, this integrated marketing plan for the Maxis company will be developed in order to propose certain strategic recommendations for the services that Maxis currently specializes in.
Then importance of this strategic plan lies in the fact that maintaining competitiveness within this industry will be very important because any lack of strategic direction and improvements will result in Maxis being overtaken by other companies like DiGi, for instance. This plan does make a comprehensive analysis of the internal and the external business environment for the company and the information that is obtained is capable of being used to form some new and effective strategies and other strategic initiatives to enhance this companies competitiveness.
Maxis Company’s Key Success Factors
It was submitted that there exists about three kinds of critical success factors and these are said to relate to industry critical success factors which are caused by the industry characteristics which are very specific, the critical success factors which are said to be caused by the main competitive business strategy and finally, the critical success factors which are said to be caused due to changes in the economy or technology (Rockart, 1986) For the Maxis company, the following will be the main critical success factors of this company:
- Highly innovative and advanced IT infrastructure (Rockart, 1986)
- Elevation in the level of effectiveness of the customer service representatives of the company
- Very competent and high level of employee morale as well as productivity
- Good brand recognition in Malaysia
- Efficient internal operations (Rockart, 1986)
These success factors have been largely responsible for assisting this company to gain a lot of success within the borders of the Malaysian telecommunications industry. It is due to the these success factors that Maxis have been capable of sustaining a high and commendable level of growth, efficient development and commendable profitability levels within Malaysia.
It is these kinds of critical success factors that can be utilized ion the process of strategy planning. By making an identification of these kinds of critical success factors, it will enable the company to be focused well on moving into the right direction. Through the proper clarification of the order of priority of the critical success factor of Maxis, in terms of measuring the results as well as rewarding very efficient performance, it will make improvements towards the success for the long-term of this company (Maxis Critical Success Factors, 2010). .
Through making a review of the information that was obtained from the SWOT analysis, there are some very significant and important internal strengths within the company that are understood to be factors that are responsible for the success that was enjoyed by Maxis. However, it might be that this company no longer is able to use these strengths to become more competitive. In addition to this, the Maxis company does have many kinds of opportunities that are present within its external environment and the successful capitalization of these strengths and opportunities will make it possible for Maxis to eliminate its weaknesses and threats.
By doing this, it will be able to get more growth within the Malaysian market and increase its market share. The important findings of the SWOT analysis is that there are some weaknesses present within its internal framework that have to be solved in order to ensure competitiveness of the company. It is apparent that the primary weakness stems from the service disruptions, lack of service coverage, badly trained staff and high serviced charges for additional features. These prices that Maxis puts up form their extra services tends to make the customers not want to use these services.
The main threat here clearly comes from the stiff competition that comes from its closest rival, DiGi. This is a major external threat that is faced by Maxis and if no steps are taken to solve this threat, then it is likely that DiGi will overtake Maxis as being the mobile service provider of choice in Malaysia, if it already has not done so. DiGi is known to provide the same kind of mobile communication services for the o Malaysian mobile phone users. The pricing of DiGi services are in some cases much lower than Maxis and this is especially so when it comes to calling from one DiGi user to another.
In 2008, the Malaysia GDP per capita as been estimated as being at $15,700 in 2008. In 2008, its purchasing power parity has been estimated to be about $397. 5 billion. The real growth rate of Malaysia GDP in 2008 had been at 5. 5%. The recession within the global economy did ultimately lead to reduced electronics export and these were major revenue earners for this country (Economy Watch – Malaysia, 2010). Malaysians business organisations like Maxis was not affected much by the economic downturn and it did not seem to put a dent in the success of Maxis.
The Malaysian economy is now displaying very positive trends and gaining strength and this is certainly pleasing for Malaysian businesses. In addition to this, the strengthening of the economy means that more businesses are sprouting up and the need for communication and mobile communication is fast rising and the services that are offered by Maxis are designed to satisfy these needs.
Trends This is perhaps the most important of all trends that could affect the way that this company does its business. In Malaysia, the number of cell phone users are increasing fast and these trends are apparent within business as ell as social users. In addition, the youth of Malaysia are starting to find the use of cell phones to be the very trendy. Many people find the ownership of mobile phones to be very trendy, very glamorous and it is also found to be indispensable when it comes to carrying out business. What is observed here is that these mobile phones can permit the users to form a sort of micro-culture, that essentially demonstrates the capability of the cell phone user to make modifications and to be able to repurpose technology in accordance with their own benefit as well as utilization (WM – Malaysian Mobile Phone Culture, 2010).
Cell phones are clearly an indispensable object that keeps members of the society connected (The Street Dictionary. Com -Mobile Phone Culture in Malaysia, 2010) and keeps businesses running. Due to the current trends in the use of cell phones to maintain connections, there are a increasing number of persons that are staring to own mobile phones, for work or recreation. This can only be made possible where the user subscribes for a service provider that enables for them to establish communication via cell phones.
For this to be possible, the user has to purchase a service pack that enables them to activate their cell phone and to start making phone calls and sending text messages. This does clearly place Maxis at an advantage as more and more people have to buy these service packs in order to stay connected.
When speaking in terms of technology, it can be said that the rate of technology transfer within the mobile communication industry is efficient and very high. Most of all, the government of Malaysia helps in the acquisition of new technology by local organisations, in line with the policy of the Malaysian government towards the promotion of local business organisations. Hence, it is possible for new cell phone technologies that are available overseas to be acquired very quickly and then used as needed. Companies like Maxis will clearly benefit from this availability of new technology.
One of the main types of technology that could have an impact on Maxis is the se of other kinds of fast and instantaneous communications methods that are present on the internet, like Skype and other kinds of free or cost efficient methods of making calls. These kinds of software will enable these internet users to be able to place phone calls from a computer to another computer at a fraction of the costs of mobile phone use. This can cause a change in trends and cell phone users might find the use of these types of software programs to be very convenient and cost efficient. These software types also make it possible for computer users to be able to place calls from their computer to mobile phones for free.
In making an analysis of the data that is obtained here, what is discerned here that these trends that are prevalent in the macro-environment seem to be very promising and encouraging for the Maxis company. The trends of Malaysians and their addiction to cell phones will be very promising for Maxis as more and more people are likely to need cell phone activation service packs. The only issue here is that some users might find that the service packs are quite expensive and the additional features to be unnecessary.
These consumers are likely to change service providers in the event that they find a better deal elsewhere.
Analysis of the Competition and the Market Situation in Malaysia This part will look at the type of competition that is being encountered and experienced by the Maxis company in Malaysia. The mobile telecommunications industry in Malaysia is characterized by stiff competition between three main industry players. These are very large companies within very immense power within the industry. They dominate the market and new entrants find it hard to enter and compete.
The main competitors for the Maxis company comprise of DiGi and Celcom. These two competitors have become just as popular as Maxis most recently and this is largely due to the strategies that these companies have applied. These competitors, especially DiGi, have managed to replicate the strategies utilized by Maxis to enhance its competitiveness and to differentiate its services. The pricing strategy as utilized by this company is also very competitive as there is not much of price difference between these service packages.
Currently, DiGi has managed to get a very large amount of marker share and has reduced the market share that was once held by Maxis. Even Celcom are now starting to compete very strongly with Maxis. The level of competition that takes place between these service providers is very high and they each have very attractive marketing strategies that are used to enhance competitiveness and outdo each other.
Distribution Maxis distributes its products through the use of licensed Maxis dealers that are located all around Malaysia. It has a few of service centers located all around Malaysian but its products are also widely available at mobile phone dealers in Malaysian. These dealers are located in various locations like shopping complexes and in many areas within city centers. Customers can buy service packs from any one of these dealers or service centers. 8. The Marketing Objectives of the Maxis Company The plan is now concerned with outlining the strategic marketing objectives for the Maxis Company. These sort of marketing objectives are understood to concern the Maxis company will be the following objectives: 1. To increase the sales of the main Maxis service pack by 35% by 2011, 2. To increase the amount of revenue that is generated from the sales of the Maxis service pack within Malaysia by about 25% 3. To elevate the levels of market share within the within the Malaysian telecommunications industry by up to 10%
The Maxis Marketing Mix
The marketing mix is conducted now to determine issues and to extract information in relation to the Maxis product, its price, its placement and distribution and its promotions. The Product of Maxis Maxis provides a wide range of services and these includes mobile services, fixed services, and also international gateway services. These services are not simple to differentiate and the only part of it services that is capable of being subject to differentiation is Maxis service package, that contains the SIM card used to enable the use to make phone calls and various other activities relating to the use of a mobile phone.
This will be the product that will the subject for analysis. There is clearly a need for more diversification of the features of the service pack in the sense that the services need to be enhanced and differentiated from the competition, which is the service pack provided by the Maxis company. What is needed is more attractive features and bonuses that are not offered by competitors like DiGi or Celcom. There needs to be an incentive to encourage the users of the mobile phone to select the Maxis package in contrast to other packages.
Pricing of the Maxis Product Concerning pricing issues, the price at present is not very different from that of competitors and hence there needs to be a change in the pricing strategy of Maxis in order for the pricing to be even more competitive than that of its competitors. Through proving the customers with better prices than its competitors, Maxis can go a step closer to achieving its marketing objectives.
Placement of Products of Maxis Maxis has a number of branches all around Malaysia and it is based in KLCC. There are thousands of dealers that sell Maxis products all over Malaysia and these dealers are licensed to sell Maxis products. Through the use of this strategy, Maxis increases its reach and strengthens its presence. This is an important consideration and what can be recommended here is that Maxis continue to enhance its reach all over Malaysia and overseas as well. This is something that DiGi has not do yet and to be the first to do this will be a good opportunity for Maxis to increase its reach, performance and profitability.
Promotion and Advertising of the Maxis
Product Promotional activities have to be enhanced in order to deliver the message about the benefits of the improved product and hence, there will be a need for a more intensive promotional campaign within Malaysia. The following are some of the tools that can be used by this company to advertise its services more effectively:
- Newspapers advertising
- Television advertising
- Radio advertising
- Sales promotion
- Public relations
- Magazines advertising
The Strategy Recommended for the Improvement of the Maxis Product
Through the analysis of the information which was acquired previously, it is not possible to identify the areas that are in need of enhancements and the various opportunities that are open for Maxis to improve its product. The following strategy concerns the a combination of various aspects that form major parts of this plan. This strategy is designed to make positive improvements towards the mobile, fixed, and international gateway services package that is offered by the Maxis Company. Target Market for Maxis
The target market for the Maxis company in relation to the product selected will be cell phone users that need to communicate, for business, recreation etc, wherever they are and at any time The Product of Maxis There needs to be some investments that need to be made to enhance the product and a 15% increase in the budget for investment is needed to permit the product development team at Maxis to be able to enhance the service pack of Maxis, and this means that there has to be inclusion of features that are attractive for normal users and also for business users.
The product needs to be enhanced to cater for business users as well and a separate type of service pack needs to be made for business users, which means more features for business use. This means business users will find the service pack more relevant to their business needs. Price of the Maxis Product For pricing, there needs to be a reduction of 3% for local calls and 2% for international calls. SMS services are recommended to be provided for free between Maxis phone subscribers in order to attract more customers.
However, this needs to be seasonal and free SMS services are only to be provided for 2 weeks every month for Maxis subscribers. The price needs to be set at RM5. 00 and then increased to RM5. 50 in the thirst and fourth quarter of 2011. Promotion of the Maxis Product There has to be an increase in the budget for the Maxis advertising campaign and these are to be directed towards the promotion of the improved Maxis product and the campaign must be long enough, effective enough and intensive enough to reach out to the target market. Maxis Marketing Research
A very crucial investment here needs to be make in market research and the investment needs to be increased by 10% in order to have enough resources to be made available so that the marketing researchers at Maxis will able to research more intensively about the way that the Malaysian consumers make their purchases. The research will also be focused on monitoring competitors like DiGi, the progress that they are making, the strategies that they are using, and the way that they are marketing their products. This research will be vital to gain the necessary information to improve Maxis.
Controls and Management of Integrated Direction of the Marketing Plan An integrated marketing plan like this can only be of use when it is well managed and developed (Kotler et al, 2007). This means that it will be very essential for the plan’s strategic direction to be managed properly so that it will help Maxis achieve what it is meant to do, that is, to assist the company, to enhance their profitability, to increase growth rate, enlarge its marketing share and to increase the level of brand awareness between cell phone users within Malaysia.
Due to the level unpredictability concerning the future, what will be very important here will be for the managers of Maxis to prepare themselves to handle external and internal factors which are capable of compromising and preventing the plan to be effective and applicable (Kotler et al, 2007). The Maxis managers have to manage the plan through ensuring that various negative elements which have the potential of compromising the plan have identified and eliminated.