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Product Life Cycle Stages & Strategies with Examples

Product Life Cycle (PLC) is an important part of marketing. This article explains the product life cycle stages and strategies with example. The product life cycle can be divided into 4 stages viz. Introduction, Growth, Maturity and Decline stage. If we consider the pre-introduction stage, then there will be 5 stages of PLC.

PLC has some exceptions and hence we can explain it with various styles.

Different stages and strategies at each level of the Product Life Cycle are given below:

Stage 1 of Product Life Cycle: Introduction Stage

Characteristics of Introduction Stage

  • Customers: Innovators
  • Sales: Low Sales
  • Costs: High Cost per Customer
  • Profits: Negative


  • Marketing Objectives: Create Product Awareness and Trial
  • Product: Offer a basic product
  • Price: Cost Plus
  • Distribution: Selective Distribution and Heavy promotion
  • Advertising: Build product awareness among early adaptors and dealers


Kia Sonet, Maruti Suzuki S-Presso, Nissan Climber

Stage 2 of Product Life Cycle: Growth Stage


  • Customers: Early Adoptors
  • Sales: Rapidly Rising Sales
  • Costs: The average cost per Customer
  • Profits: Rising profits


  • Marketing Objectives: Maximize Market Share
  • Product: Offer Product Modification, Extension, Service, Warranty
  • Price: Competitive Price to Penetrate Market
  • Distribution: Large Distribution Network
  • Advertising: Build awareness and interest in the mass market and reduce sales promotion


Tata Altroz, Tata Tiago, Suzuki Baleno

Stage 3 of PLC: Maturity Stage


  • Customers: Mature
  • Sales: Peak
  • Costs: Low Cost per Customer
  • Profits: High


  • Marketing Objectives: Maximize Profits while defending market share
  • Product: Diversify brand and models
  • Price: Price to match or beat competitors
  • Distribution: Build more intensive distribution
  • Advertising: Stress brand difference


Maruti Suzuki Swift, WagonR, Toyota Innova, Honda City, Honda Amaze, Toyota Fortuner

Stage 4 of PLC: Decline Stage


  • Customers: Declining
  • Sales: Declining Sales
  • Costs: Low Cost per Customer
  • Profits: Declining


  • Marketing Objectives: Reduce Expenditure and milk the brand
  • Product: Phase-out weak items
  • Price: Cut Price
  • Distribution: Go selective, phase out unprofitable outlets
  • Advertising: Reduce to the level needed to retain hardcore loyal customers.


Tata Indica, Sumo, Bolt, Maruti Suzuki S-Cross, Mahindra Xylo

Books Referred:

  1. Marketing Managemnet, Philip Kotler
  2. Basics of Marketing, Philip Kotler, Armstrong

This is all about Product Life Cycle Stages & Strategies in marketing with latest example.

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