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ProTEC Marketing: Economic Appraisals and Strategic Planning 2013

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Expert Survey in the Steel and Foundry Industry

Technology and cost management as well as international competitiveness - these are the challenges of the highest priority for strategic objectives for the companies in the steel and foundry industry in 2013. Despite the extremely sceptically forecast growth dynamics of the overall economy, the players in the industry evaluate the development of their own companies positively and proceed with a great deal of confidence in their capacities. This, as well as further strategic plans, illustrates the current industry panel Foundry/Steel, established by the Technology Agency ProTEC Marketing.

A differentiated look at the "entire economy", the "own industry" and the "own company" provides quite diverse estimations supplied by the managers of the steel and foundry businesses. Thus, only 17% of the interviewed persons consider the entire economic development for the next twelve months to be positive, the vast majority of 64% as rather restraint. Projected to their own company, the assessment is rather optimistic: More than 40% look positively upon the year.

Topics such as obtaining technology and cost leadership as well as the consolidation of the international competitive position represent the focus of the strategic challenges in 2013. Considerable significance is attributed particularly to the development of innovative products. 65% of the interviewed persons are planning to expand their technological leadership with the aid of excellent innovative performances. This is designed to take advantage of existing market potential as well as tap new national and international markets.

The participants of the study particularly consider the strongly fluctuating order volume, the prevailing pressure from competition and high (additional) personnel cost as obstacles on their way to achieving their objective. These developments are counteracted with comprehensive strategic planning; primary objective is the consolidation of customer retention followed by the intention to generate new customers. Further priorities include the expansion of the own market position and an associated clear differentiation from the competition. These packages represent complex challenges for the companies in 2013.

The second part of the study presents backgrounds to marketing and communication activities, differentiated assessments of classic and non-classic measures of communication in the context of advancing digitalization as well as media competency of the target groups.

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