Friday, May 30, 2008

Marketing Plans

A lot of companies don't have a marketing plan.A product (or service) should be targeted to a specific target market, fill a need, something that is unique in the market place. But too often companies are producing a mere copy of innovative products, hoping to grab a piece of market share by doing "me too" products.

While market research and product development are certainly expensive for a company, reward can be big; see how the iPod saved Apple from bankruptcy.

Only few companies out there are true innovators and too many just want to do the same products, hoping that a different name brand will make a difference. While this mentality reduce your research costs, it reduces a company’s chances to capture high market share for a profitable product.

It’s surprising to see how many companies don't have any, or at least a good marketing plan. It should be written for a single product and specific to the life cycle it is aimed at.

First of all, it is a necessity to do an external audit. What are the competitors? What is the market share, revenue, locations, mission, and positioning?

Then S.W.O.T (Strength, Weakness, Opportunities, Threats) analysis should be written. Too often it is about features and benefits. It is very narrow minded to think of consumers that way, emotional connection plays an important part in the buying habits and including critical success factors can better respond the psychological behaviors. Drawing from the Apple example, the brand delivers an emotional status and the location or support provides added value.

After doing a market segmentation and analyzing where is the potential for growth, the following should be done:

-Selection of one or two target market that the product is aimed to.

-Write a product positioning

-Write a plan for each of the 4 P's (Price, Product, Promotion, Place) in correlation with market cycle life, and the product cycle life to prevent inaccurate sales forecast.

Finally marketing strategies and tactics should be focused for the next three years. The vision of the market, budgets, advertising mix, additional features are key to success.

A well thought marketing plan helps the whole company. A big idea from R&D is only a successful product if it fills consumer needs; Sales need information on the life cycle of the market and product for accurate forecast; Advertising needs information on what the consumers are looking for as a Brand.

I see a marketing plan as the strategy that will make the positioning statement becoming a reality, unifying all departments within a company to move toward the same goal: consumer satisfaction through innovation,communication and teamwork.

Monday, May 19, 2008

How To Choose The Right Goggles For You

Interviewed by my wife, Leslie, she and I discuss choosing the right goggles based on the criteria that can improve your snowboarding.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

The Pursuit of Happyness: Sanuk

Sanuk is the thai name for Pursuit of Happyness, which could explain why employees are allowed to be late at work if they can be seen in the lineup from the office spotting a famous reef in Southern California.
The unusual choice of color and materials (like the green outdoor carpet) makes it a first choice to stand out from the crowd, express yourself and mostly importantly be comfortable.

For instance, the Donny is a cool, casual, canvas slip-on featuring a shoe upper and sandal bottom. The Donny offers protection of a shoe and the natural comfort of a sandal. Give your feet a little gift from heaven. Go on, pamper them.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Exclusivo Collection 2009: Smith Optics

Smith Optics is well known in the industry for quality and performance on products such as sunglasses, goggles and helmets.With a lifetime warranty, Smith stands behind those to provide the best to snowboarders who want to push themselves.

However I will have to admit while their goggles have great features, they have been conservative on the fashion style. But this is coming to an end.

With all those fashion fickle snowboarders, Smith is coming up next season with some sick styles. Partnering with Cappel (ride snowboard), they have designed the Exclusivo Collection to provide the best style on their high performance goggles.

Furthermore, there are all kind of lenses you can choose from and for those who only go once a year, it can be confusing what lenses to pick. As a result Smith has designed a website that will help you select the right lenses, so go check it out:

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

A Happy life...

Is a happy wife. According to Leslie. She told me this funny quip over a year ago and I have to say that this phrase has become one of my personal mottos.

In this phrase is distilled decades - hell, thousands of years - of wisdom that stubborn men had so painfully learned. When she first quoted this phrase it was simple and easy to understand: keep her happy and so shall I be.

Now gentleman, I’m not saying to sacrifice your personality or your hobbies, I’m saying give her the things she needs and she’ll only reciprocate by giving you the things you need: you can use your imagination.

I’m getting married this Saturday, so I plan to use this wisdom quite often. If not for her happiness, but for my sanity. I’ll let you know how it goes... from inside or outside of the nut house.