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WHAT BUSINESS ARE YOU IN?
This is one of the best questions you can ask an organization.
What business are you in?
If you are selling ice cream, you can't be selling computers next year. That is out of your character, identity, and your mission.
If selling the highest quality of ice cream all over the world is your objective, then please stick to that and do not attempt to be the best of something else, or else, you lose your personality and you confuse your audience, market, and buyers.
The tendency to be-all for everyone is a strong temptation. Resisting is a must if you can be seen as a credible player in your field. The marketplace is very unforgiving. It does not care if you lose focus or patience. It is for the quickest and the strongest of all.
Clear differentiation is the best weapon for businesses to stand out in the crowd. You may be the best barber or social media or marketing professional, but if you do not provide the clear value proposition and significant difference from the pack, it will be hard to attract the right audience for what you do.
It is in the mind of your audience that you have be in the front, centre, and clearly the best choice of all.
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IT'S A BEAR WORLD
Build a Bear just had a major marketing disaster. Their Get your Age Bear was a big failure.
Thousands were turned away, disappointed moms and kids queueing up for their bears. They should have seen it coming in thousands and they know that they will not be able to handle the overwhelming demand from consumers. This is an ill-thought and ill-executed marketing campaign.
It could have been done well if they have segmented the market where they will start the campaign, pre-positioned the inventory and staff needed to run on those campaign days, and then provide an online alternative for parents to get them online and pick up on different days. The chaos will definitely ensue and that any small store in the mall will be totally engulfed.
Marketing is the engine of any business. If done well, it can boost up sales, customer support, and increase profitability. When done it a wrong way, it can turn away the precious customer affection that takes years to build and nurture.
The CEO apologizing for the disaster the following day is a good mitigation strategy but that it did not vanquish the frustration from the incident. The next Bear the Big marketing event may not get the benefit of the doubt and the marketers may have to grin and bear the consequences.
What happens after a marketing failure sets apart good companies. This is where a good PR can save the day.