A new article in MIT Sloan Management Review argues that mass customization could make sense for most businesses.
Strong brands are often seen as an important corporate asset. But what happens when user communities—connected by the Internet—start to create their own brands? That question was explored in an intriguing August 2008 working paper, “Costless Creation of Strong Brands by User Communities: Implications for Producer-Owned Brands.” The paper suggests that companies with traditional brands would be wise to pay attention to this emerging arena.
Companies now have unprecedented access to data and sophisticated technology that can inform decisions as never before. How successful are they at helping forecast what customers want to watch, listen to and buy?
Companies that provide professional services have not always been eager to invest in customer education initiatives. For such companies, it has remained unclear what economic benefit they would gain by providing customers with the skills and abilities needed to become more knowledgeable customers.
The discipline of marketing hasn’t kept up with the rapid changes facing 21st-century businesses. New scholarship doesn’t have enough management relevance, and practicing marketers are too often forsaking rigor. Here are seven strategies that can make marketing both relevant and rigorous in today’s world.
Many executives may feel that they have a pretty good grasp of the reasons why people make or purchase counterfeit goods. In effect, these senior managers rely on their own values and their understanding of business models to form conclusions about counterfeiting and to develop strategies to combat it.
By unpacking the idea of a good or bad reputation into a profile of what the media says about their company, executives and public relations managers can understand and then influence their corporate reputation — and with it, their company’s real performance.
Marketers cannot avoid discounted sales, and consumers have come to expect them. The average shopping mall, grocery store or online shop is littered with discounted products: Tide detergent is 10% off; books are sold with free shipping; Nike sneakers are buy-one, get-one-free.
Word of mouth is a great way to reach new customers, but it’s an even better way to lose them. At least, that’s what three researchers found when they looked at how the usage patterns of a home video service changed with quality levels.&
Most companies segment their markets by customer demographics or product characteristics and differentiate their offerings by adding features and functions. But the consumer has a different view of the marketplace. He simply has a job to be done and is seeking to “hire” the best product or service to do it. Marketers must adopt that perspective.
In the early, hyped-up days of e-commerce, Internet retailers tried to focus customer and investor attention on the bells and whistles of their product offering or Web pages, and hoped that no one noticed the poor performance of backroom operations — or they deluded themselves into believing that good execution
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