A Study of Breakthrough Marketing Strategies through examples
Brands have to continuously innovate to cater to the ever changing needs and wants of the consumer.
Both new and established brands are searching for new ways to differentiate themselves and thereby offer superior value to customers. Innovation can be broadly classified into two categories: incremental and breakthrough. Incremental innovations are additions to existing products in response to market forces that help maintain market share whereas breakthrough innovation involves creation of new technologies or processes that revolutionize the way organizations perform, providelong term value and lead to transformation, dissolution and emergence of new industries. In this article we revisit some of the radical innovations.
Hewlett-Packard’s inkjet printer platform
It represents a discontinuous innovation. Innovation is what innovation does. Adiscontinuous innovation involves breaking with the past to create new technologies and processes. The radical technology displaced dot-matrix printing and created the desktop printer industry which impelled the company into the leadership position of a multibillion dollar market of printers.
3M Post-it Picture Paper
This innovation was based on insights gained from the customer trends. Customers used laptops and cell phones to send quick memos or jot down bits of information. Every thumb-tapped message or stylus-penned note on a personal digital assistant meant one less Post-it note.The other trend was the rise of digital photography. While observing consumers, 3M researchers asked to see their photos. Nine months later a team of one marketer and two lab scientists hit upon the idea of Post-it Picture Paper, or photo paper coated with adhesive that lets people stick their photos to a wall for display. Clearly, the key to this innovation was how closely 3M captured the plight of the consumers. A close watch of the customer insights and their environment can go a long way in innovation to even established products.
Business Model of Bharti Airtel
Sunil B. Mittal, chief executive officer of Indiannumerouno telecom company Bharti Tele-Ventures Ltd., adopted a radical business model, wherein the company outsources everything except marketing and customer management. It charges 2 cents per minute for calls, and adds a million customers to its customer base per month.
In 1975, Steven Sasson of the Eastman Kodak Company gave the world its first digital camera. Digital cameras have revolutionized the way we click and share photographs. Besides being very easy to carry around, they do not require film to be loaded, to store pictures. Digital cameras use memory cards that allow taking a lot more pictures than the film in a traditional camera. These pictures can be viewed immediately after they are taken, and those not required can be deleted. These cameras also work as reasonably good digital video recorders that serve the purpose of a few hours of recording. With so many advantages, digital cameras have almost replaced traditional film cameras in most parts of the world.
Two popular products, the compact disc player and the camcorder, revolutionized the manner in which people listened to music and captured their auspicious moments.The CD player was introduced as a way for people to enjoy their favorite music using compact discs, replacing tape decks and record.
Nintendo Entertainment System
Although the makers of Nintendo already had a successful game console in Japan, called Famicom, it took several years to get their product noticed around the world.After several failed attemptsNintendo repositioned itself with a revamped look which resembled a toy and adopted a direct selling strategy to the toy sections of stores in New York and Los Angeles.It reaped huge dividends in late 1985 when NES sold 90,000 units at their New York locations alone between October and Christmas.The system was launched nationwide in 1986 and became one of the best-selling video game consoles of all time.
Automated Teller Machine
Today, thanks to Shepherd-Barron, the ATM has drastically altered the entire banking experience. Simple tasks, such as, deposits, withdrawals, and even postage stamp purchases, can all be completed in a matter of seconds at external bank ATM’s and ubiquitous stand-alone ATM’s in gas stations to shopping malls to airports, etc., or while seated in your car at drive-thru ATM’s.
The iPhone Effect: How Apple’s phone changed everything
Apple’s iPhone was launched four years agoand changed the smartphone landscape of the world and ushered in the modern era of intelligent and connected devices. It shook up the industry and forced changes and upheaval among many competitors.
Virtual Integration of Dell Computers
Michael Dell’s insight to bypass the dealer and sell personal computers directly to customers became known as “Direct Business Model” and it gave Dell Computer Corporation a substantial cost advantage. Dell Computers integrate all the members of the supply chain using technology and information. This vertical integration provides the economic benefits of a tightly coordinated supply chain and focus and specialization.
Channel Partnership between Wal-Mart and Procter & Gamble
P&G and Wal-Mart leveraged on information technology by sharing data across their mutual supplychains. The resulting channel has become more efficient as a result of their collaboration. Inventory levels have decreased whereas sales have increased due to collaborative planning and replenishment. The supply chain between P&G and Wal-Mart ishighly customer focused through the channel partnership which is mutually beneficial.
Emami Fair and Handsome
Based on a market research which revealed that 30% of fairness cream users were menEmami launched Fair & Handsome. The category itself was booming and Emami had the first mover advantage. This lucrative fresh category proved to be a gold mine as many big players including Hindustan Unilever, L Oreal, Garnier and Nivea have ventured into it. On the brand valuation chart, Fair & Handsome is already worth `100 crore and has 80% market share. It was a novel idea which created a new market.
A hybrid car is a vehicle that utilizes two types of technologies for energy, one a conventional gasoline engine and a bank of batteries. A load balancing is performed between these two sources. Many hybrid cars also charge their batteries by using regenerated energy that was captured through braking. While the adoption rate for hybrids is small today (under 3% of new car sales in the U.S. for August 2010), it is touted to scale heights as incremental costs dwindle due to learning and scale benefits.
Innovation whether it is incremental or breakthrough is the buzzword. Breakthrough innovations are just as necessary as incremental ones. In todays market where product life cycles are getting shorter and with the plethora of “me too” brands innovation is the key to suvival. Incremental innovation aims at maintaining status quo whereas some higher risk innovations allow companies to stand out from competitors. Customer retention relies on this innovation.
- Miladri Majumdar & Ravi Ranbir (IMT Ghaziabad) One of the 4 entries chosen for being published on the blog in the January edition of article writing competition