University of Chicago
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Williams Sonoma. Measuring the strategic readiness of intangible assets
The marketing strategies that Williams-Sonoma is applying involve the extensive use of the internet to market its products to the masses. Online marketing and business provides numerous business opportunities across the globe since it is easily accessible to everyone. This creates opportunity for the company to access various customers as well as suppliers and even potential partners that they can do business with and ensure they provide quality products at affordable costs (Simonson, 1999). This as it has been seen has greatly contributed towards the success of the company. It has been able to increase its customer base, increase in sales of its products and in the long run an increase in its profitability. It is important to note that the internet is continuously growing day by day and there are lots of changes taking place. There are also a large number of people that are using and have easy access to the internet. It is apparent that over the next five years, Williams-Sonoma is likely to experience an increase in the number of customers that it serves (Marks, & Frolick, 2001). Furthermore, there is a likelihood that the number of products that the company will provide to the customers will also increase. This means that in the next five years, Williams-Sonoma is likely to experience greater growth of its business and operations in general and may become a multinational company.
As a CEO of an organization, one must be in a position to formulate and implement strategies that will help in achieving the mission band vision of the organization. Making the decisions on what strategies to undertake require sufficient information on the market and other elements that affect the performance of the company (Kaplan, & Norton, 2004). In this case study, Williams-Sonoma is seen as a company that is ready to take risks and adopt new strat5egies in marketing its products. From the case study, it is to be noted that the target group for the company is limited to customers that are high income earners considering that it offers high-end products only. Therefore, a recommended strategy would to provide variety or practice product differentiation in terms of affordability (Kanter, 2001). This can be achieved by ensuring that the products are of high quality although affordable. Apart from offering affordable prices and quality products, the other strategy that I would recommend as the CEO would be offering of discounts for the products bought. Those customers that buy at least three different items should be offered a certain percentage of discounts to make the products more affordable (Marks, & Frolick, 2001). Furthermore, the other strategy that I would recommend would be to increase advertising on social media sites since these have been a great avenue through which companies are able to reach out to customers. Finally I would recommend that the company increases its amount of imported as well as merchandise that is unbranded.
One of the competitors of Williams-Sonoma is Crate & Barrel. There is a lot of stiff competition for Williams-Sonoma due to the strategies which are applied by the competitors. In the case of Crate & Barrel, the company is using the strategy of low affordable prices on its products as a way through which it is able to attract more customers (Marks, & Frolick, 2001). It is to be understood that when the prices of products or even services are affordable, the demand is likely to be high and hence more customers and profitability in the long run. Williams-Sonoma on the other hand offers products at a very high price and hence only attracts the customers that are high income earners only (Kaplan, & Norton, 2004). This means that Crate and Barrel has a larger customer base than Williams-Sonoma. The other strategy being used by the competitors includes the setting of their businesses in major locations unlike Williams-Sonoma. This means that the other competitors have been able to reach out to more clients hence becoming more competitive than Williams-Sonoma. Business location is of great importance for any given company. The location will determine the ease of access to the goods and the services of the company by the customers and hence affect the overall performance of the company.
The internet has become one of the avenues through which companies or organizations are able to do business especially marketing their products or even selling their products online. Different companies have employed the use of the internet in different ways and Williams-Sonoma is one those companies that has not been left out in the rush to make business through the internet. Williams-Sonoma is using the internet as a marketing tool for its products whereby it sells information to its customers such as information on recipes (Kaplan, & Norton, 2004). The current use of the internet by Williams-Sonoma is the formulation of search for information on its products. The customers have to pay for the information that they get. However, for the future of the company, Williams-Sonoma can make use of the social media sites to promote its products to the numerous internet users available on social media. It would also benefit the company if it opens online stores where it can be able to sell its products online.
Kanter, R. M. (2001). The ten deadly mistakes of wanna-dots. Harvard Business Review, 79(1), 91-100.
Kaplan, R. S., & Norton, D. P. (2004). Measuring the strategic readiness of intangible assets. Harvard business review, 82(2), 52-63.
Marks, W. T., & Frolick, M. N. (2001). BUILDING CUSTOMER DATA WAREHOUSES FOR A MARKETING AND SERVICE.
Simonson, I. (1999). The effect of product assortment on buyer preferences. Journal of Retailing, 75(3), 347-370.