In the slideshow presented below, learn about many of the opportunities and challenges facing those interested in a field of business.
The latest data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics are included.
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:
- 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.”
- 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.”
- 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.”
- 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.”
- 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.”
- 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.
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.
Research giant Nielsen annually examines thousands of new product introductions.
As part of its analysis, Nielsen has identified its 2014 U.S. Breakthrough Innovation Winners: “These diverse new products carry the common thread of finding and filling unmet consumer needs while demonstrating that with significant effort, game-changing innovation is possible in any category and by all types of companies.” The products are all commonly found in the supermarket.
The winning products were all introduced in 2012. We have inserted direct links to these products:
- Angry Orchard Hard Cider, The Boston Beer Co.
- Barcel Takis, Barcel USA
- Bud Light Lime Ritas, Anheuser-Busch
- Depend Silhouette Briefs for Women and Depend Real Fit Briefs for Men, Kimberly-Clark
- Febreze Car Vent Clip, Procter & Gamble
- Gevalia Kaffe Retail Coffee, Kraft Foods
- International Delight Iced Coffee, The WhiteWave Foods Co.
- Meow Mix Tender Centers, Big Heart Pet Brands
- Mucinex Fast-Max, Reckitt Benckiser
- Nabisco belVita Breakfast Biscuits, Mondelez Global LLC
- Nature Valley Protein Bars, General Mills
- Sargento Ultra Thin Slices, Sargento Foods
- Tide Pods, Procter & Gamble
- ZzzQuil, Procter & Gamble
Many companies have had a major impact on business practices and our lives. And a lot of these companies have endured for a century or more.
Recently, Fortune published a list of 27 companies that have changed the world over the last century-plus.
Sorry, Apple fans — but Apple ranks only 16th on the list!
Click the image to see the full list. :-)