Identify and evaluate the marketing strategies that Wal-Mart pursued to maintain its growth and marketing leadership position? What factors should a firm consider in the development of its marketing strategy. In my analysis of the article, the marketing strategies employed by Wal-Mart are; I. Cost Leadership Wal-Mart commits to deliver quality products with the lowest price. Wal-Mart's prices are up to 15% cheaper than other stores. Wal-Mart's store managers are given authority to lower prices based on the local competition.

Wal-Mart stores are built in the outskirts of large cities and communities with the warehouse appearance that giving them the competition advantages in low leasing and maintenance costs. From my evaluation, the cost-leadership strategy helps Wal-Mart to fulfill the market niche of costumers looking for quality goods at a bargain price. This was the market-penetration and market-development strategy that helped the company penetrates and expands in its target market. Wal-Mart is somewhat protected from industry competitors by its cost advantages.

If the rivalry within the industry competes on price, Wal-Mart is withstanding better then other companies because of its lower overhead costs and advanced inventory system. II. Differentiations and Operation Effectiveness. Apart from the cost leadership, Wal-Mart's philosophies of excellence in the workplace, customer service, warmer feeling store and its core competencies in unique product inventory systems helped Wal-Mart gains a quality leadership that placed Wal-Mart in the competitive advantage against its competitors. From my analysis, the danger still exists for Wal-Mart is the competition can easily imitate Wal-Mart's method. This is already apparent with Target and Kmart building new stores resembling the super center format and emulating Wal-Mart ways by introducing people greeters, upgrading interior, developing new logos and signage, and introduce new inventory response system.

In order to fight this threat, Wal-Mart needs to exploit its bargaining power over its suppliers and pass the benefits on to its customers in the form of quality brand name items available at lower than competitive prices. This approach will build up customer loyalty and market share and thus, fight off competitors. Subsequent to the fact that Wal-Mart's competitors are deliver the same products, offer similar prices, and have the same type of stores, then the critical component will be customer service. Wal-Mart needs to stress this fact throughout the entire organization in order to continue dominance in the industry.