Product Life Cycle (Response 3)

Product Life Cycle In normal circumstances, most product follow this product life cycle in its various phases. However, life cycles exist at multiple levels of "product" and this concept explains the observed characteristic of Apple’s iPhones 4. It is worth to note that marketing managers generally are most interested in the life cycles of specific brands. In respect of the case of IPhone 4, life cycles can be viewed from three levels from a managerial perspective (Hunt,2010). The first level is the product category life cycle, represented by the sales of the IPhones product category as a whole. At the next level, is the life cycle of a specific product form – iPhone 4 — within this larger product category. Finally, is the brand product life cycle which is given an adjustable managerial approach to keep it in the market at its value.
The observed trend in the case of iPhone 4 is expected because the individual brand is the focus of management’s decisions(Hunt,2010). As marketing managers observe changes in the sales of their brands like in the case of iPhone 4, particularly if sales are perceived to be declining, changes are made in one or more elements of the marketing mix. These changes are focused towards offsetting, or reversing, sales declines. If successful, the declining sales trend always corrects itself, at least for a period of time. However, sales will again eventually decline and changes will again be made to some aspect of the marketing program (Hunt,2010).
It should be apparent that these ongoing decisions to change elements of marketing programs will cause the trend or sales curves for individual brands to bounce around considerably. However, because the sales curves for many brands are summed to create the life cycle for the associated product form, and the curves for multiple product forms are summed to yield the life cycle for the entire product category, these latter two curves tend to be less erratic. This explains the consistency of iPhone 4 in its price.
Hunt, S. D. (2010). Marketing theory: Foundations, controversy, strategy, resource-advantage theory. Armonk, N.Y: M.E. Sharpe.