The main characteristics of the maturity stage which help to define the appropriate marketing strategies are
At some point of time, growth rate slows down and the product enters the maturity stage.
The stage is likely to stay longer than the previous stages
Most of the products stay in the maturity phases for a very long period and the most of the marketing management deals with mature products
Maturity stage is made up of three stages
Sales growth start declining due to availability of better products in the market
Laggard buyers enter market because of low price
No new channels are left to fill as the distribution network reaches its saturation
Sales stagnates due to market saturation
Future sales governed by population increases and replaced demand
Absolute sales volume decrease
Customers start switching to substitutes/other products which are available in the market
After this stage, the life cycle enters into the decline stage
Affect during maturity phase
Slowdown in sales growth creates over capacity which leads to intensified competition
Competitors try to find new segments or niche areas to boost growth
Prices may decrease significantly due to lower sales volume and increased production capacity
Advertising increases and sales promotion increases
R&D expenses increases to discover new features, products improvements and line extensions
Shake out may occur due to intense competition. Weak competitors may withdraw.
Companies have to decide whether to be a dominant or a niche player to sustain during this product life cycle phase. Marketing strategies in maturity phase could be Market modification, Product Modification and Marketing mix modification
Sales volume can be increased by influencing constituent variants or by modifying the market itself
Number of brand users can be expanded by
Converting non users which are yet to use the brand or product
Entering new market segments or geographies to expand the market
Try to get competitor’s customer base by attracting them to own products
To increase usage rate, the strategies would be
Try to get customer to use a product more frequently – Juices can be taken anytime, except breakfast.
More usage per occasion – large diameter of tube opening for tooth paste adopted successfully by Colgate.
Companies tries to discover new product uses and tries to convince customers to use a product in different ways.
Sales can be increased during the maturity stage by modifying the product. Product modification can be done in three main ways
Improvement in quality
Improvement in features
Improvement in style and looks
Quality improvement tries to increase the final performance of a particular product in terms of
Feature improvement aims at improving
Marketing Mix Modification
Sales can be increase by stimulating other marketing mix components. These are
Specified in the product modification segment which aims to modify the existing product to attract more customers
Specified in the market modification segment which aims at increasing the market segments and geographies
Price decrease to increase sales by attracting price sensitive customers
Price increase to indicate superior quality and services which can be used successfully for some products
Companies can try to obtain more product support and display in existing outlets.
Number of outlets may be increased
New Distribution channel may be used
Advertising expenses may increase
Advertising message or appeal may change
Sales promotion can be used to enter into new market segments or lift sales volume temporarily.
Number/quality of sales force may change
Sales territories/sales force management may change
Companies may change a product’s services in terms of Delivery, Technology assistance to customers and Maintenance and Support to boost sales volume
This is the most important marketing strategy as most of the products stay in the maturity phase for longer time and most of the marketing management is done for this stage.