This ____(1)____ asking customers about likely ____(2)____, particularly of your product rather than that of ____(3)____, for the forecast period. It may be undertaken by the ____(4)____. Alternatively, a ____(5)____ of likely purchasers may be used. It has a particular ____(6)____ where there is a ____(7)____ small group of ____(8)____ buyers, but this is rather rare.
2.5.3 Complete the text. Replace the Russian words and phrases by the English equivalents.
Ñóùåñòâóåò ìíîãî ôàêòîðîâ which can seriously affect the ñòðàòåãè÷åñêèå ðåøåíèÿ made by the firm. Ìíîãèå èç ýòèõ ôàêòîðîâ are within the control of the firm. However, there are a number of factors in the âíåøíåé ñðåäå of the firm over which it has íèêàêîãî ïðÿìîãî êîíòðîëÿ. An external factor around which a company must ðàçâèâàòü ñâîþ ìàðêåòèíãîâóþ ñòðàòåãèþ is the ýêîíîìè÷åñêàÿ ñðåäà, which may dramatically alter the market. This is especially so âî âðåìÿ ðåöåññèè, when disposable äîõîäû ïàäàþò sharply and ñïðîñ íà ìíîãèå ïðîäóêòû is sharply ñîêðàùàåòñÿ. Companies which have ïðåäïðèíÿëè ñòðàòåãèþ of marketing a highly differentiated product íà íåçàíÿòîì ðûíêå, at a high price, may be hard hit by falling incomes. Therefore, it is âàæíî ïðåäâèäåòü è ïëàíèðîâàòü for òàêèå ïåðåìåíû in the economic environment.
2.5.4Text for discussion.
a. Look up the dictionary or Unit 2 Glossary for the meaning and pronunciation of the following words and word-combinations and use them to discuss the problems outlined in the text.
Product life cycle; to commence; commonplace items; high technology products; time scale; sound policy; failure rate; product awareness; penetration pricing; brand image; outlets; economies of scale; product line; repositioning; price discounting; niche markets; maturity.
b. Briefly scan the textand outline the list of major points.
c. Read the text more carefully and comment on the following items:
- the difficulty to judge which phase a product is in at present;
- the use of modification to prolong the product life cycle;
- other criticisms of the concept.
Product Life Cycle
This is a most important concept for the Marketing Department of any company to have in mind as part of their strategic planning process over the long term. As soon as a product enters the market it commences a life cycle, which can be measured or forecast. The life cycle will tend to be long for standard, commonplace items like soap or bread, but short in case of high technology products like computers. The concept of product life cycle is a helpful tool, in order to identify the correct strategy for each stage, the movement from one stage to another and the time scale of the whole cycle. This will permit a sound policy on the systematic introduction of new products.
High failure rate;
Create product awareness;
Quickly drop unsuccessful products.
Possibly acquired by larger company.
Promote brand image;
Obtain economies of scale.
Sales increase at reduced rate;
Product line widened;
Pricers fall as market share id lost;
Profits fall as competition grows;
Marginal producers fall out.
Seek new customers by repositioning;
Increase or hold market share by greater efficiency, price discounting.
Falling industry sales, product sales;
Some producers abandon market; Falling profits.
Reposition in niche markets;
Strict cost control;
‘Run out’sales promotion to get rid of stocks prior to introduction of replacement.
Table. 5 Characteristics and strategies of the product life cycle stages
LANGUAGE AND CULTURE IN THE LATE MIDDLE AGES
With spread of literacy, cultural life in Britain naturally also developed. In the cities, plays were performed at important religious festivals. They were called “mystery plays” because of the mys-terious nature of events in the Bible. The language itself was changing. French had been used less and less by the Norman rulers during the 13th century. In the 14th century Edward III had actually forbidden the speaking of French in his army. It was a way of making the whole army aware of its Englishness.
English (the old Anglo-Saxon language) continued to be spoken by ordinary people after the Norman Conquest but was no longer written. By the end of the 14th century, however, English was once again a written language, because it was being used instead of French by the ruling, literate class. But “Middle English”, the language of the 14th and 15th centuries, was very different from Anglo-Saxon. This was partly because it had not been written for three hundred years and partly because it has borrowed so much from Norman French.
Two writers, above all others, helped in the rebirth of English literature. One of them, William Langland, a mid-14th century priest gives a powerful description of the times he lived in. The other, Geoffrey Chaucer, has become much more famous. His most famous work was The Can-terbury Tales, written at the end of the 14thcentury. The Canterbury Tales describe a group of pilgrims travelling from London to the tomb of Thomas Becket at Canterbury, a common religious act in England in the Middle Ages. During the journey each character tells a story.
Collections of stories were popular at this time because almost all literature, unlike today, was written to be read out aloud. The stories themselves are not Chaucer’s own. He used old stories, but rewrote them in an interesting and amusing way. The first chapter,in which he describes his characters, is the result of Chaucer’s own deep understanding of human nature. It remains astonishingly fresh even after six hundred years. It is a unique description of a nation: a young and old, knight and peasant, priest and merchant, good and bad, townsman and countryman. Here is a part of Chaucer’s description (in a modernized version) of the knight and his son, the squire:
There was a knight, a most distinguished man,
Who from the day on which he first began
To ride abroad had followed chivalry,
Truth, honour, generousness and courtesy…
He had his son with him, a fine young squire,
A lover and cadet, a lad of fire
With locks as curly as if they had been pressed.
He was some twenty years of age, I guessed…
He was embroidered like a meadow bright
And full of freshest flowers, red and white.
Singing he was, or flurting all the day;
He was as fresh as is the month of May,
Short was his gown, the sleeves were long and wide;
He knew the way to sit a horse and ride.
He could make songs and poems and recite,
Knew how to joust and dance, to draw and write.
He loved so hotly that till dawn grew pale
He slept as little as a nightingale.
By the end of the Middle Ages, English as well as Latin was being used in legal writing and also in elementary schools. Education developed enormously during the 15th century and many schools were founded by powerful men. One of these was William of Wykeham, Bishop of Win-chester and Lord Chancellor of England, who founded both Winchester School in 1382, and New College, Oxford and they have remained famous for their high quality. Many other schools were also opened at this time, because there was a growing need for educated people who could administer the government, the Church, the law and trade.
The Middle Ages ended with a major technical development; William Caxton’s first English printing press, set up in 1476. Caxton had learnt the skill of printing in Germany. At first he printed popular books, such as Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales and Malory’s Morte d’Arthur. This prose work described the adventures of the legendary King Arthur, including Arthur’s last battle, his death, and the death of other knights of the Round Table. Almost certainly Malory had in mind the destruction of the English nobility in the Wars of the Roses, which were taking place as he wrote.
Caxton’s printing press was as dramatic for his age as radio, television and the technological revolution are for our own. Books suddenly became cheaper and more plentiful, as the quicker printing process replaced slow and expensive copy-writing by hand. Printing began to standar-dize spelling and grammar, though this process was a long one. More important, just as radio brought information and ideas to the illiterate people of the 20th century, Caxton’s press provided books for the newly educated people of the 15th c. and encouraged literacy, Caxton avoided printing any dangerous literature. But the children and grandchildren of these literate people were to use printing as a powerful weapon to change the world in which they lived.