Strategy for When Satisfied Customers Don’t Come Back

Posted by Christopher Dent on Oct 21, 2016 9:14:53 AM

A month ago, my wife and I celebrated our third wedding anniversary. As we celebrated, I thought back to the autumn of 2007 when we first met.

I was a single 20-something professional, less than a year removed from active duty in the Marine Corps and anticipating settling down and starting a family. Having tried the “bar scene” to no avail, I decided to join eHarmony. Six months later, having met my beautiful wife and extremely happy with the outcome of my time on the site, I closed my account.

As I reminisced, I glanced at the pile of magazines sitting on the coffee table. I wondered: how does a company like eHarmony stay in business when a successful outcome means its clients never need it again, as opposed to other businesses (like periodicals) where the value proposition is ongoing?

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Topics: Competitive Intelligence, Brand Insights, Technology/Telecomm, Competitive Strategy

Social Media Has Changed the Trajectory of Corporate Scandals

Posted by Christopher Dent on Sep 28, 2016 10:24:56 AM

There is an old rule of thumb that for every letter a congressman receives, there are 50 people thinking the same thing who didn’t pick up a pen. For every customer who bothers to complain, 26 others remain silent (and buy your competitor’s product instead).

How many people does a Facebook comment represent? What about a like or a share?

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Topics: Brand Insights, Manufacturing/Industrial, Competitive Strategy

Is Amazon Becoming a Bank?

Posted by Ken Sawka on Aug 23, 2016 3:54:49 PM

UPDATE: Wells Fargo and Amazon ended their partnership on 08/31/2016 with minimal comment. The partnership fell under criticism from consumer advocates and organizations promoting affordable education.

Last month, Amazon.com entered the student loan business in a partnership with Wells Fargo, offering lower rates for student loans to Amazon customers who subscribe to the online retailer’s Prime Student service.  Wells Fargo will cut half a percentage point from its interest rate on student loans to Amazon Prime Student members, who also get benefits such as free two-day shipping and access to movies, TV shows, and online photo storage.

Does this deal signal what many have felt is the inevitable entry of technology companies into the financial services industry, or is it a convenient and mutually beneficial partnership between two companies with common interests?

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Topics: Brand Insights, Financial Services, Market Analysis, Competitive Strategy

Can Apple TV Outshine Netflix and Traditional TV Broadcasters?

Posted by Ken Sawka on Aug 3, 2016 11:41:11 AM

Apple has long been expected to “revolutionize” how we watch television.  Ever since it launched Apple TV in 2006, speculation has been rife that Apple would become a major force in video production and distribution.

Apple’s refresh of Apple TV last year - improving voice search with Siri and adding a bunch more apps - did little to quell that speculation.

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Topics: Brand Insights, Innovation, Market Analysis, Technology/Telecomm, Product Positioning, Competitive Strategy

Build It, Code It, Test It, Film It: Industrial Content Marketing

Posted by Ola Jachtorowicz on May 12, 2016 1:03:26 PM

When you think of General Electric, what enters your mind? The shine of a lightbulb? The high torque density of laminated salient pole rotors? Or a glowing, hopeful feeling about the ingenuity of the human mind?

If it’s the third option, you’ve been touched by GE’s brand halo. Perhaps a visual even appeared as the halo did its work: pristine wind turbines or young engineers literally catching lightning in a bottle.

Traditionally, the brand halo effect describes how a positive experience with one product can increase purchases of unrelated products from the same brand. Apple is a classic example. The 2005 success of the iPod led to a 27% increase in Apple computer, software, and service sales, despite marketing focusing on the iPod alone.

Here’s the thing: it’s no longer necessary to purchase a product for the brand halo to work its magic, and industrial companies should pay attention. In the price-sensitive and cut-throat markets in which many industrial companies compete, a positive brand halo could be the difference between being a leader and a laggard.

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Topics: Brand Insights, Innovation, Manufacturing/Industrial, Competitive Strategy

Starbucks Customer Loyalty Program: It's Not You, It's Us

Posted by Ken Sawka on Feb 25, 2016 12:30:11 PM

Starbucks recently announced changes to its popular customer rewards program My Starbucks Rewards (soon to be known as simply Starbucks Rewards).  As a loyal Starbucks customer, I received the email announcing these changes, which informed me that starting in April, I’ll earn two “stars” for every dollar I spend on coffee, food, drinks, mugs, and more.  Starbucks even provided a handy table so that I could compare the old rewards program with the new:

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Topics: Consumer Goods, Brand Insights, Market Analysis, Competitive Strategy

Uber's Airbus Helicopter Partnership Flies Close to the Sun

Posted by Nathaniel Emmons on Jan 26, 2016 8:00:00 AM

It’s raining. Traffic is backed-up and not moving. Take out your smartphone and summon an Uber. An Uber helicopter that is.

Uber has hovered around the aviation sector for the past few years, offering helicopter rides from Manhattan to the Hamptons and flights to Coachella. Last weekend the firm announced it was partnering with Airbus to provide on-demand helicopter services for the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. Local authorities have tried to shut down the service this weekend, but what spurred the partnership in the first place?

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Topics: Brand Insights, Innovation, Technology/Telecomm, Competitive Strategy

Is the Chevrolet Bolt a Tesla-Killer?

Posted by Christopher Dent on Jan 14, 2016 1:34:32 PM

The Chevrolet Bolt

Tesla has been synonymous with electric cars for nearly a decade. Sleek, forward-thinking, high-end: that’s the Tesla we know today. Still, from the inception of the Tesla Roadster, CEO Elon Musk has insisted that Tesla’s strategic end-goal is to one day create a “super affordable electric vehicle with mass market appeal.  

That day has finally come. But it’s not Tesla holding the prize. 

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Topics: Brand Insights, Market Analysis, Product Positioning, Competitive Strategy

Filgotinib: Still Early to Pop the Champagne

Posted by Adi Reske on Dec 24, 2015 12:38:39 PM

Recently, Galapagos NV and Gilead entered a partnership, potentially worth more than $2 billion, to develop Galapagos’s oral JAK1 inhibitor, filgotinib, for inflammatory diseases.

Earlier in December 2015, Galapagos announced positive interim Phase II Crohn’s disease results for filgotinib. Based on the data presented, 48% of moderate to severe CD patient treated with filgotinib achieved clinical remission at 10 weeks compared to 23% placebo (p=0.0067); clinical response (CDAI decrease of 100 points or more) as well improvement in patients’ quality of life were also met in the study. According to the company’s CEO, results from the Phase II trial merit moving the drug into a Phase III Crohn's program “as soon as possible”.

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Topics: Brand Insights, Pharma, Life Sciences, Product Positioning

Five Things Lockheed Martin Needs Sikorsky to Do

Posted by Christopher Dent on Dec 3, 2015 8:00:00 AM

On November 6th, United Technologies Corporation (UTC) closed the sale of its Sikorsky aerospace unit to defense giant Lockheed Martin for $9B.  Does this acquisition improve the strategic position of both companies or will Sikorsky prove to be a white elephant?

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Topics: Brand Insights, Market Analysis, Merger and Acquisition, Competitive Strategy

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