Tag Archives: customer satisfaction

Amazon Versus Hachette, Amazon Versus Disney, Etc.

18 Aug

As the world’s largest book seller and online retailer, Amazon is never afraid to flex its muscles with regard to suppliers. So, these questions come into play: Is Amazon acting as an advocate for lower consumer prices (as the retailer claims)? OR is Amazon an unrestrained bully trying to increase its margins at the expense of its content providers (as critics claim)? WHAT IS YOUR CONCLUSION?

For several months, Amazon has been  battling with publisher Hachette. Consider this observation in Catey Hill’s report for MarketWatch:

“Amazon and book behemoth Hachette — along with some publishers’ groups and writers — are at one another’s throats, in a fight that’s escalated just within the past week. Amazon, which accounts for about 60% of the digital-book market, wants to use its market power to get Hachette to lower E-book prices, while Hachette says that this is ‘punitive,’ hurts authors and bookstores, and doesn’t take into account the costs — like royalties, marketing and expenses — that go into creating books. Hachette also notes that 80% of its books are already selling online for $9.99 or less, which is the price at which Amazon hopes to sell many of its E-books. For its part, Amazon has used its leverage against Hachette by delaying shipping and stopping pre-orders on some Hachette books.”

Now, Amazon has also decided to do battle with the Walt Disney Co., another behemoth content provider. Consider this observation in Greg Bensinger’s report for the Wall Street Journal:

“When Amazon.com Inc. wants to fight, it turns to a familiar playbook. The latest to feel the Seattle retailer’s sting is Walt Disney Co. Amazon isn’t accepting pre-orders of forthcoming Disney DVD and Blu-ray titles including Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Maleficent. As Amazon continues its well-publicized battle with Hachette over E-book costs, it has now engaged in a battle with Disney. It is the same tactic Amazon has employed in a bitter four-month spat with Hachette Book Group over E-book pricing. To press its point, Amazon suspended pre-orders for physical copies of many Hachette titles and lengthened shipping times or pared discounts for others. The tactics underscore Amazon’s unusual sway in E-commerce, where it is by far the dominant player, particularly for books and media.”

Click the image to see a Wall Street Journal video on this battle.

Photo by Associated Press

 

What Binge Viewers Want

14 Aug

In recent years, due to the widespread availability of DVRs and on-demand programs, more people have been engaging in “binge” viewing — whereby they watch multiple episodes of a program (typically, a series) at one time.

Marketers need to understand this new segment of binge viewer and respond to the desires of this segment.

Consider these observations from eMarketer:

“Ever sat down to watch an episode of a TV show and gotten sucked in for hours on end? That’s called binge-viewing, and a May 2014 study by Annalect — which defined binge-viewing as watching three or more episodes of the same television show in one setting — found that 63% of U.S. TV watchers ages 18 and older fell into this category (though just 30% actually said so).”

“Those who did binge-view voiced a strong aversion to advertisements during their TV time, with 58% saying they liked binge-viewing because they didn’t have to watch ads. A close 57% said ads prevented them from fully enjoying their TV shows, and 53% didn’t think that commercials even had a place in the binge-viewing world.”

 

Click the chart to read more.

 

 

The Changing Constants of Marketing (No, This Is Not an Oxymoron)

18 Jul

We’ve written a lot about the rapidly changing world of marketing — with the advances in social media, technology, big data, etc. So, sometimes, we need to pause and reflect on things that are the constants in marketing.

In 1966, McKinsey published an article by John D. Louth on “The Changing Face of Marketing”: “This article from the McKinsey Quarterly archive analyzes six major changes that promised to transform future marketing efforts. These forces have largely proved to be as influential as predicted and continue to shape today’s challenges.”

The six major changes — which are really marketing constants — are as relevant today as they were nearly 50 years ago:

  1. The dominance of the customer — “It is nearly a truism that the needs and wants of the consumer are the critical issues today in creating new products and services, and developing the accompanying plans to merchandise them at a profit.”
  2. The spread of marketing research — “The second trend is the increased use of marketing research — in terms of both quantity and scope. To an important degree, of course, this trend is a response to the first. If knowledge about future customers is essential, and if the quality of the marketing output is materially affected by the caliber of the informational input, then marketing research is bound to increase in use and contribution as the interest in more scientific marketing grows.”
  3. The rise of the computer — “The third major trend marketing must consider is the emergence of electronic data-processing equipment as a major tool of scientific marketing not only for reporting data but also, more importantly, for planning and control by management.”
  4. Expanded use of test marketing — “A fourth important trend, in my opinion, will be toward more controlled experimentation to narrow the odds of an error in making marketing changes. Two major influences emphasize the need for further expansion of test marketing. The first is the rising cost of marketing changes: the costs, for example, of introducing new products and packaging, of developing new advertising and promotional programs, and of retraining salespeople. The second influence is the mounting investment in product research and development. About half of all corporate research-and-development activity in the United States today is concerned with the creation of new commercial products.”
  5. Metamorphosis of field selling — “The fifth trend I foresee is a shift in the nature of the field-selling job toward a more integrated, profit-oriented marketing effort. Key-account selling is becoming an increasingly crucial feature of the field-sales job—a trend with important implications. In many companies, a key-account selling program may entail special analysis of present and potential customers, and the establishment of related control reports to measure profit results with particular accounts.”
  6. Global market planning — “An ever-broadening application of the marketing concept to worldwide markets is the last of the six broad trends that I believe will change the face of marketing in the next few years. Over the past decade, the marketing concept has become widely accepted in the United States—perhaps, in some situations, too enthusiastically accepted and too indiscriminately applied. Nevertheless, I believe the concept of a completely integrated marketing effort is valid and will be increasingly adopted. In many companies operating worldwide, it will stimulate the development of global market planning.”

Click the image to read the full classic article.
 

 

An Interview with Fashion Legend Diane Von Furstenberg

17 Jul

Diane Von Furstenberg has been a prominent, trend-setting fashion designer for decades. Take a look at the Web site of her company to see what she’s doing now.

Here’s a brief bio of Von Furstenberg by Liz Welch of Inc.:

“Designer Diane von Furstenberg was 27 when she made the first wrap dress in 1974. The iconic design landed her on the cover of Newsweek — and millions of women snapped up her dresses. But when demand faded, von Furstenberg ended up selling most of her licenses to avoid bankruptcy. In 1997, von Furstenberg relaunched her company, which now has annual sales of more than $200 million. The wrap dress, too, made a comeback, and recently celebrated its 40th anniversary with ‘The Journey of the Dress’ exhibition, which traveled the globe. And, as the 68-year-old designer recently shared with Inc. contributing editor Liz Welch, she is focused on building a company to outlast any fad.”

Click Von Furstenberg’s photo to read her recent interview with Liz Welch for Inc.
 

 

Who Are the Best at Customer Relationship Management (CRM)?

8 Jul

For the tenth year, a major award for the best firms in  CRM has been given by 1to1Media, this time in conjunction with Gartner.

Click here to read a summary about the 2014 Gartner &1to1 Media CRM Excellence awards.

And click the image to read the full report.
 

 

Evans on Marketing’s 20 Most Popular Posts

23 Jun

Since this blog began in 2012, several of the 900 posts have been especially popular among readers. For those who have missed any of the 20 most popular posts, here they are:

  1. Best Business Decisions Ever?
  2. Online Shopping Behavior by Gender and Age
  3. Do You Regularly Check Yourself Out at Google?
  4. A Job Skills Infographic
  5. Is It OK to Leave a Job Off Your Resume?
  6. The Volkswagen Jetta Promotes Safety
  7. Apple and Planned Obsolescence: Is This Good Or Bad?
  8. New Balance Athletic Shoes: Made in the USA — But for How Long?
  9. Great Privacy Tip: How to Go Incognito on Google Chrome
  10. The Value of Infographics
  11. Are You Trying NOT to Get A Job?
  12. Ten Tips to Help You Get a Job Interview
  13. Is Marketing a Good Career Choice?
  14. Where Consumers Will Pay More for Products from Socially-Conscious Companies
  15. 15 Traits of Superior Employees
  16. The Top Social Media Sites in China: An Infographic
  17. Do YOU Provide Too Much Online Information About Yourself?
  18. Is Banning Facebook at Work a Good Or Bad Idea?
  19. Questions NOT to Ask During a Job Interview
  20. Is Sharing One’s Salary Data with Co-Workers OK?

 

Netflix Keeps on Rolling

4 Jun

After a few hiccups (such as the introduction of dual subscriptions), Netflix is certainly on a roll again. And a large part of Netflix’s recent success has been tied to its development of original programming, including Emmy-winning House of Cards. This move has changed the business for the industry and drawn emulators like Amazon.

Here is a good infographic that shows “The Economics of Netflix: How to Make a $100 Million Show.” Click on the image for a larger version, and then scroll down to learn many interesting facts about the economics of programming.
 

Economics of Netflix
Source: GreatBusinessSchools.org

 

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