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Harmonix - Embrace Your Inner Rock Star

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Frahsha Albert

Marketing Foundations

Case Study Four

Harmonix- Embrace your inner Rock Star

1. Use the five product characteristics to analyze the rate of adoption for music-based games.

Though firms develop products to satisfy the wants and needs of the market the essence of their existence is to remain a going concern through the generation of profits. Profit can only be realized if the market adopts the new products designed by the firm. Some products have a quicker rate of adoption because of the firm's reputation in the market as a customer satisfying firm, for example Apple and Samsung. Some firms however, are not so fortunate and are closely scrutinized through a trial period. Their products are examined and compared to five characteristics, which then determines the rate of diffusion of these new products into the market.

Firstly the complexity of the product is tested and based on the level of difficulty to use and ease of understanding the decision to adopt the product is made by the market. In today's market simplicity is a major plus for firm competing. Families are more career oriented, persons are busier trying to accomplish hundreds of things before bed time, so therefore individuals have little or no time to allocate to learning the complex contraptions to get their basic needs met. Because we are an "on the go" market, taking time to read bulky and tedious instruction manuals will certainly not win any firm with a new product points in the market. Therefore for any new product to be adopted at an accelerated rate into the market it must keep the level of difficulty to a minimum.

The second deciding factor in the time frame of diffusion for a new product into the market is the level of compatibility. This is the level of which the current product is in sync with the values, knowledge and "know how" of previous more familiar products by the firm. Firms such as Samsung, Apple and Microsoft can be relied upon to develop likeminded products. Compatible products give the firm an edge in consistence, especially when prior products have proven to be satisfactory. Though products may change to improve on applications already being offered, these changes should not be so radically different to implant a seed of doubt in the market. Harmonix was able to maintain compatibility with the release of the new products because every one of these products was designed around the need to engage first time gamers and families to create and play music. From the 2004 release of Karaoke Revolution, to the 2005 introduction of Guitar Hero and Rock Band it can be noted that each of these are compatible with the prior offering of this gaming franchise. Other gaming franchises such as EA Sports continually release games compatible with each other such as FIFA 13, NHL 13 and Grand Slam Tennis 2, all games surrounding sports.

Relative advantage is the third characteristic which determines the rate of diffusion of a new product into the market. Consumers are always on the hunt for a better product because of the need to get more for their money. Relative advantage is the degree to which an innovation is perceived to be superior to existing products. The greater

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