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Virtual goods, disintermediation, product maturity and more

I need help with these questions as completely as possible. Please provide logical arguments with support for each answer.

1) Is the buying and selling of virtual goods marketing's new frontier? How can a brand manager take advantage of the millions of consumers who live in a virtual reality?

2) How does disintermediation and the restricting of distribution channels impact brick and mortar marketers? Is the Internet revolutionizing marketing or is it just another distribution tool?

3) Pick a product that is in a developed nation and is facing maturity and decline within its domestic market. Describe your strategy for extending the profitable life of the product within its mature market (do not use international expansion as the strategy).

4) Companies must balance their competitive and marketing strategies to fit the desires of their target market while addressing the competitive and realities of the marketplace. Barbie is celebrating her 50th birthday. What can Mattel do to stop the decline of Barbie, one of their best selling products in the past?

5) The shelf life of a chief marketing officer is 26 months on average. How does this short tenure impact the success or failure of a company's marketing strategy? What are the challenges of the position and what can be done to increase the time in the job?

Solution Preview

When companies make the decision to sell their real product in a virtual world they are able to reach millions of people instantly and are not limited to regions are nations. For example, when Toyota Motor Corp. wanted to promote its new Scions to young buyers, it turned to one of the growing number of companies doing business in the popular online universe Second Life. The firm, Millions of Us, conjured up Scion City ? a futuristic urban island with a dealership that sells the cars and a racetrack where consumers' online personas can take them for virtual test drives. "The goal is to build a community in Second Life that is really engaged and really excited and really involved," said Reuben Steiger, 35, chief executive of Sausalito, Calif.-based Millions of Us. "Five years from now, it will be near-photo quality," Steiger said. "The experience of walking in will be like stepping into a live action movie". Second Life now boasts more than 3 million registered users worldwide, and Linden Lab estimates about 1.3 million users logged onto the realm in the past month. Companies pitching everything from virtual T-shirts to entertainment have followed the crowd. Since launching in July, Millions of Us has done projects for General Motors Corp., Sun Microsystems Inc., Warner Bros. Records, Microsoft Corp., 20th Century Fox, Intel Corp. and rapper Jay-Z, among others. Other major companies that have established a presence in Second Life include IBM Corp., Dell ...

Solution Summary

Virtual goods, disintermediation, product maturity and more are examined. How disintermediation and the restricting of distribution channels impact brick and mortar marketers are determined.