Harlequin Enterprises Case study

Document Type:Thesis

Subject Area:Business

Document 1

E-books can be classified into two categories; those for which users have to pay and open source ones where users can download freely. Over the years, Harlequin Enterprises has remained a key player in the world’s most adventurous store for electronic books. While other publishers declined from e-readers, Harlequin and its rivals have found a way to flourish. Combining the advantages presented by the rise in e-book sales, Harlequins have also relied on the strategy of providing content on 21st-century romance (Maxim, 2012). The idea has proven a hit to the start of a recession because, during economic turmoil and stress, books about hope and faith and love are often preferred. The internet has reduced subscriber loyalty and presents an economical and trackable marketing means.

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With the increase of smart devices like IPad and tablets, publishers can find ways of presenting content to the consumers. With the number of competitors available, Harlequin has to outline their focus on audience, context, and content. The bargaining strength of buyers is also relatively strong. Subscribers possess considerable power because a significant amount of the content is now offered online at no cost. Competition in the industry is considered fierce because of the growing segments like fashion, food, and health. However, the level of competition differs among brand-positioning models. For Harlequin, the publisher is likely to face less competition because it has created a sharp focus on producing romance e-books. If the company would have adopted a policy of being a broader consumer publisher without a sharp focus, the competition would be significant.

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Though, such factors do not basically indicate that the company is free from the competitive aspect of the business. The introduction of the SRF is consistent with the previous policy that was successful. Competitors found it hard to replicate Harlequins success because the company focused on 20 different series-romance fiction brands, and targeted the female population. The names included American Romance, Blaze, Desire, Heartwarming, Historical, and Intrigue. Additionally, the Harlequin author-editor ensured the series products demonstrated consistency and quality. Harlequin became the largest publisher of women’s series romance fiction in the world (Despot, & Jakopec, (2014). The above points of sale previously accounted for almost 70% of North America retail sales. The recommended strategies would only be suitable if they help Harlequin Enterprises counter its current challenges and present an opportunity to outgrow its competitors.

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Considering all the three options, adopting an agency model and reverting back to SRF publishing of e-books appear more suitable than opting to publish hard copies (Crossan, Crossan, & Fry, 2013). Publishing e-books requires less capital and human resource than publishing and printing, hence the price of Harlequins books is likely to increase. Such a strategy would mean that the company would lose its customers to its competitors because of the price factor. Therefore, the best action plan is to adopt a suitable agency model to cater to the price of e-books. References Azadi, S. STRATEGIES FOR COMPETETIVE ADVANTAGE IN ELECTRONIC COMMERCE. EMAJ: Emerging Markets Journal, 1(2), 59-69. Crossan, M. Libellarium: journal for the research of writing, books, and cultural heritage institutions, 6(1-2), 81-90.

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