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  • Hi, I'm Liam. Welcome to Oxford Online English

  • In this business English lesson, you'll  learn to talk about marketing strategies  

  • and corporate competition. You'll see lots  of useful vocabulary and collocations you  

  • can use to talk about business strategy. You'll learn useful language to talk  

  • about losing market share, entering  a new market, launching new products,  

  • and staying competitive in an evolving market.

  • Hello, everyone, and thanks for joining us for  this conference call, wherever you might happen  

  • to be in the world! If you don't know, my name's  Dimitri, and I lead the marketing department.  

  • I'm not sure that you're aware, but our European  business has not been doing well in the last  

  • year or so. In particular, we've been losing  market share to our rivals. A Korean company,  

  • Neidon, entered the European market three  years ago, and have adopted an aggressive  

  • pricing strategy, which is putting pressure on  our revenues. Additionally, a German start-up,  

  • called Hammer, have expanded their market  share in Germany, Austria and Switzerland,  

  • partially at our expense. It's clear that  we need to respond to these market forces,  

  • and I'd like to start thinking about  our options during this meeting

  • In this presentation, you heard some phrases based  on the word 'market'. Let's look at a few of them

  • Imagine that you want to explain the meaning of  these phrases in English. What would you say

  • If you're losing market share, then your  business has a smaller proportion of  

  • the available customers. The phrase in  sentence two has the opposite meaning;  

  • if you expand your market share, you reach  a higher proportion of potential customers.

  • You can also gain market sharewhich has the same meaning

  • 'Market forces' – you can also say 'market  pressures' – describes the conditions in a market,  

  • and how they affect company  behaviour and strategy.

  • For example, a market in a particular field,  

  • or a particular area, might get more or  less competitive with time. Consumers there  

  • might get richer or poorer. These are examples of  market forces which businesses need to adapt to

  • Generally, you can improve your English to  talk about these topics by paying attention  

  • to *collocations*. A collocation is when  you use words in a specific combination.

  • 'Expand your market share' is a collocationYou might know all these words individually,  

  • but could you use them together? With  collocations, you need to learn the  

  • combination of words as a single block, so that  you can use them together without thinking.

  • We recommend going back to the presentation text  and trying to find more useful collocations. Do  

  • the same with the other presentation texts  which you'll see in the rest of this lesson!

  • You're about to hear the  presentation for part two.  

  • Don't forget to listen out for  collocations. In the presentation,  

  • there are three new collocations with the  word 'market'. Try to find them as you listen

  • I'd like to discuss an idea which  has been floating around lately,  

  • and explain why I don't think it's a solution  to our problems. I'm talking about China;  

  • I've heard from many of you that we should try to  enter the Chinese market, but I don't think this  

  • is a good strategic move for us right now. First  of all, the regulatory barriers to entry are high.  

  • Secondly, there's already fierce competitionfrom both local and international companies.  

  • Finally, the cost of getting established  in a new market can be large, and while  

  • we're financially solid, we don't have so much  free cash flow, so we'd have to take on debt.  

  • Instead, I think we should focus  on our North American presence,  

  • where we're already in a strong market  position and the competition is less intense

  • Did you hear the collocations with  the word 'market'? Here they are

  • What does 'getting established' mean? 'Established' means something like 'stable' or  

  • 'comfortable'. If you get  established in a new market,  

  • you reach a position where your business is  comfortable, and you're not fighting for survival

  • There were also several other useful phrases  in the presentation. Let's look at a few

  • Can you remember the missing words? Remember  that you can go back and listen to the  

  • presentation again if you want! Here are the answers

  • 'Move' here means something like  'decision' or 'plan'. It's a noun.

  • If something is a good decision, you can  describe it as a 'good move' or a 'smart move'. 

  • If you want to enter a new market, there  will usually be some barriers to entry.  

  • These could be regulatorylaws and rules  which it is difficult or expensive to follow.  

  • They could be culturalmaybe there isn't much  demand for your product in some countries or  

  • cultures. They could be financialmaybe you need  to invest heavily to start a new operation. If the  

  • barriers to entry are high, then it's especially  difficult to get established in a new market

  • There are many words which you can  combine with the word 'competition'.  

  • In the presentation, you also  heard 'intense competition'.

  • Here's a task: go to a good online  dictionarywe recommend Longman or  

  • Lexicoand find three more adjectives which  can collocate with the word 'competition'.  

  • If your English is intermediate level or  higher, focusing on collocations is often a  

  • better way to improve your vocabulary, rather than  spending all your time learning individual words.

  • Again, when you listen to the presentation, try  to find new collocations with the word 'market'.  

  • There are three to find

  • Another way that we might compensate  for the decline in our European business  

  • is by bringing new product lines to market, both  in Europe and elsewhere. This could help us to  

  • expand our customer base and claw back some of  the market share we've lost in recent years.  

  • Additionally, to cut down on travel expenseswe've been retraining our sales teams  

  • so that they can work remotely. We  started work on this very early,  

  • which we hope will give us a competitive edge over  other firms that still rely on face-to-face sales.  

  • Overall, our strategic vision for the next  five to ten years is to take a more global,  

  • less Europe-centric approach. That doesn't  mean we'll be neglecting our European business,  

  • but we'll be focusing more on emerging marketsand trying to build a dominant position there

  • Here are the three new collocations with 'market'. 

  • 'Claw back' is an interesting verb. Do  you know what it means, or can you guess

  • 'Claw back' means to fight to get  back something which you lost

  • Now, to practise the other language  you heard, look at some questions

  • Pause the video, and try to make answers to these  three questions. Make sure your answers are full  

  • sentences, and make them as detailed as possibleWrite them down, or say them out loud, or do both

  • Ready? Could you do it

  • Of course, there's more than one way to  answer, but let's look at some sample answers.

  • You could say: 'A company can expand its  customer base by launching new products,  

  • entering new regional markets, or attracting  new customers through advertising.' 

  • You could say: 'A company can gaincompetitive edge by having a superior product,  

  • having lower prices, or by offering  better customer service and support.' 

  • You could say: 'In my countrythere's a restaurant chain  

  • called Goody's that have a dominant  position in the fast food market.  

  • It's one of the few countries where MacDonald's  haven't been able to gain much market share.' 

  • If you found it difficult to answer the three  questions yourself, use our answers as templates.  

  • Use the sentence structures we used, and  change the details to use your own ideas.

  • Also, just practising your answer once  

  • might not be enough! Say your answer out loud  several times, until you can do it fluently.

  • Let's move on to our last section

  • As before, try to find new collocations  with the word 'market' in the presentation.  

  • This time, there are three to find

  • So far, we've focused more on challenges which  we're currently facing, but there's plenty of good  

  • news, too. In Latin America, we are in a dominant  position, with two of our largest competitors  

  • announcing recently that they're planning to  get out of the market, which is great news for  

  • us and should allow us to consolidate our position  further. However, we don't want to get complacent.  

  • We have a first mover advantage in most of  Latin America, but other companies will notice  

  • our success and try to move in. One thing I'd  like our product teams to start thinking about  

  • is how to keep our pricing competitive and  make it difficult for any new market entrants.  

  • We should also be looking at long  term trends in South America,  

  • and make strategic decisions that reflect the  changing market conditions across the continent

  • Did you find the new collocations? Here they are. In part two, you heard a collocation which  

  • means the opposite of 'get out of  the market'. Do you remember it

  • The opposite is 'enter the market',  as in 'enter the Chinese market',  

  • 'enter the Brazilian market', and so on.

  • Let's look at some more useful phrases you  heard. Can you remember the missing words here

  • Can you remember? Pause the video  if you need more time to think

  • Ready? Here are the answers

  • If you consolidate something, you  make it stronger and more stable

  • 'First mover advantage' means the benefits you  get from being first to enter a new market,  

  • or launch a new product. For some  time, you have no competition,  

  • because you were faster than your rivals

  • 'Move in' here has the direct meaning of entering  a new market, but it has a secondary meaning, too:  

  • it has the idea of trying to  take market share and customers

  • That's all for this lesson, but there's  a lot of information and vocabulary here.  

  • We recommend that you go through the presentations  again and find new words and phrases to learn.

  • Thanks for watching!

  • See you next time!

Hi, I'm Liam. Welcome to Oxford Online English

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A2 US market market share presentation competition established competitive

Describing Business Strategy, Markets and Products - Business English Lesson

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    Courage posted on 2020/10/20
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