Business & Marketing

Competitive Forces

Most companies in the Aerospace Industry have to compete against each other for DoD contracts.  So it’s important that aerospace companies and the DoD understand the types of competitive forces out there in the market place. Understanding these forces will allow aerospace companies to better develop competitive strategy.  It will also allow the government to understand the Aerospace community better, write more competitive Request for Proposals (RFP), guide the community, and monitor the competitive environment to ensure fairness. Below is a basic list of competitor types and structures that can be represented in the community. [1]

Types of Competitors

  • Competition: Other organizations that market products that are similar to or can be substituted for a marketer’s product in the same geographical area.
  • Brand Competitors: Firms that market products with similar features and benefits to the some customer at similar prices
  • Product Competitors: Firms that compete in the same product class but market products with different features, benefits, and prices.
  • Generic Competitors: Firms that provide very different products that solve the same problem or satisfy the same basic customer needs.
  • Total Budget Competitors: Firms that compete for the limited financial resources of the same customers.

Types of Competitive Structures

  • Monopoly: A competitive structure in which an organization offers a product that has no close substitutes, making that organization the sole source of supply.
  • Oligopoly: A competitive structure in which a few sellers control the supply of a large proportion of a product.
  • Monopolistic Competition: A competitive structure in which a firm has many potential competitors and tries to develop a marketing strategy to differentiate their product.
  • Pure Competition: A marketing structure characterized by an extremely large number of sellers, none strong enough to significantly influence price of supply.

Aerospace companies and marketing managers need to understand the business environment in which they operate. They need to know their target market, competitors and the type of competitive structure they operate in.  These basic principles are needed by todays marketing managers stay competitive in the aerospace community.


  • Develop a strong monitoring system so a company can understand its target market, competitors and competitive structure. A monitoring system that is ongoing and focuses on customer needs and wants.
  • Develop a complete analysis of your competitors so you can brand you product.  Branding your product will help attract and retain customers due to loyalty and familiarity.
  • Develop a strategy to maximize your strength and minimize weakness when marketing your product or service.

AcqLinks and References:

  • [1] Pride-Ferrell.  Marketing: Southern-Western Cengage Learning, 2010

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