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Medtronic's Market Segmentation Strategy

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In the case of Medtronic, executives researched a potential new market in Asia by talking extensively with doctors in India and China. They learned that these doctors saw some of the current state-of-the-art features of heart pacemakers as unnecessary and too expensive. Instead, they wanted an affordable pacemaker that was reliable and easy to implant. This information led Medtronic to develop and market a new product, the Champion heart pacemaker, directed at the needs of this Asian market segment.


Medtronic’s five-year plan to reach the “affordable and reliable” segment of the pacemaker market included:

Set marketing and product goals. Medtronic executives set the following as their goal: Design and market such a pacemaker in the next three years that could be manufactured in China for the Asian market.

Select target markets. The Champion pacemaker will be targeted at cardiologists and medical clinics performing heart surgery in India, China, and other Asian countries.

Find points of difference. For the Champion pacemaker, the key points of difference are not the state-of-the-art features that drive up production costs and are important to only a minority of patients. Instead, they are high quality, long life, reliability, ease of use, and low cost.

Position the product. The pacemaker will be “positioned” in cardiologists’ and patients’ minds as a medical device that is high quality and reliable with a long, nine-year life. The name Champion is selected after testing acceptable names among doctors in India, China, Pakistan, Singapore, and Malaysia.

Companies can learn from this example. Determining which products will be directed toward which customers is essential for developing an effective marketing program. This decision is often based on market segmentation, which involves aggregating prospective buyers into groups, or segments, that (1) have common needs and (2) will respond similarly to a marketing action - the who and what aspects of the strategic marketing process-. Ideally, a firm can use market segmentation to identify the segments on which it will focus its efforts—its target market segments—and develop one or more marketing programs to reach them.

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YouSigma. (2008). " Medtronic's Market Segmentation Strategy." From

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