Archive for the 'marketing' Category

Market Segmentation Lets You KISS Your Customers

I’ve decided to try a different medium/ So, here’s the latest post in a video format:

Thanks for listening to this “Daily Dose” of marketing science!

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Take a Tip from Mary Kay

The Problem:
Is there a way to eliminate the cost of reaching perfectly targeted customers who have never heard of your company?

The Company:
Scuba.com is an online retailer of scuba diving equipment and accessories, physically located in Irvine, California.

The Technology Solution:
The easiest and least expensive way to generate sales is to get lots of people who know the customers you’re trying to reach. Then get those people to tell all those potential customers how great your company is. After that, you have to convince those people to sell your products for you and only paid them after they’ve made a sale. Of course, the trickiest part is to find such well-connected salespeople who will enthusiastically work under those conditions.

Back in the 1960s, Mary Kay Ash launched a beauty products empire by enabling housewives to sell her cosmetics to their friends and neighbors.  Even though those women weren’t seasoned salespeople (at first), the company found that personal enthusiasm and great corporate sales support can make up for all kinds of individual deficiencies.

Today, scuba.com has adopted the Mary Kay sales concept to boost sales, but added a technological twist to ease the sales process. As an online retailer of scuba diving equipment and supplies, scuba.com sells at higher volumes than most neighborhood dive shops. The higher sales volume allows scuba.com to negotiate better wholesale prices, which translate into lower retail prices.

However, scuba equipment lasts for many years. So to continue expanding sales volume, scuba.com must gain sales from recently trained scuba divers who don’t already own regulators and buoyancy compensators. And the best way to reach the hearts and minds of those new divers is to approach them via their instructors.

The Outcome:
Scuba.com provides instructors with an easy way to introduce their students to the website. The scuba.com website allows diving instructors to build their own webpage complete with the equipment recommendations they want to pass along to their students. That targeted word of mouth by the instructors is rewarded with a 3% store credit based pm the value of each student’s purchase.

As a result, scuba.com gets the referrals and the sales without having to pay salaried salespeople. The constantly increasing number of sales keeps scuba.com’s prices low, so the students receive great value for their money. And the instructors benefit by being rewarded with store credits, providing them with more incentive to lead each new class of students to their scuba.com pages.

This electronic sales tool simplifies the Mary Kay formula and whisks it into the 21st century. Next time, DataDocsDailyDose.com will examine a strangely named technology that helped to create a virtual storm of online traffic.

–J.D. Mosley-Matchett, Ph.D.
The Data Doc
You have questions? She has answers!

A Month of Voyeuristic Learning…

 

Remember the movie entitled The Wizard of Oz? Everyone in the Emerald City spoke in awed tones about the “great and powerful Wizard” who appeared as a gigantic, surrealistic, and very nonhuman disembodied head. Speaking in a thunderous voice heightened with intimidating lighting effects, the Wizard was fearsome, indeed.

 

That is until Dorothy’s dog pulled aside a curtain to reveal an ordinary looking man running a control room that electronically projected the fearsome images and sounds. And once the truth was revealed, the posturing could be eliminated and everyone could focus on accomplishing the original goal.

 

Sometimes technology can be intimidating. Sometimes it obscures the original goal that it was supposed to accomplish. Sometimes it’s good to slip behind the curtain and discover just how things actually work.

 

This month we will examine how real companies have tackled real problems with the technology at hand. Sometimes the efforts will be elegant. Sometimes, they will be little more than the technical equivalent of glue and string. But all of these mini-cases will push past any intimidating technology to reveal just how an important business problem was solved. So don your ruby slippers as DataDocsDailyDose.com leads you down the yellow brick road to uncover a month of business technology solutions.

–J.D. Mosley-Matchett, Ph.D.

The Data Doc

You have questions? She has answers!

 

 

 

The Science of Business and Marketing Made Useful!

I live and work in the Cayman Islands. Before moving here in 2004, I was a professor at the University of Texas at Arlington–an institution of higher learning with a single-campus student population that surpassed the entire population of Caymanians.

Normally, a tiny island country would present a quaint and simplistic business community. But the financial industry that forms the basis of the local economy has fostered a robust and sophisticated commercial center that has elevated accounts of business in Cayman to mythical stature.

My first blog was created in 2004, back before Hurricane Ivan hit this country and seemingly changed its business modus operandi forever. In blog years, 2004 was a REALLY long time ago. In fact, it’s still online at www.BracDiary.com. I created it to let my friends and family watch my progress as I built my house on Cayman Brac, one of three islands that compose this country. I figured it would take me three months to get the house built…a “quick” summer project.

Well, the blog (i.e., “web log”) began in May 2004 and ended in April 2005–not because the house was finished, but because I tripped over the still un-installed garage door and broke my camera. (And you can just imagine how hard it is to replace electronic equipment on a 12-mile long tropical island with a population of less than 2000.)

Now, here I am in the year 2008 with MUCH better blogging technology at hand and a new communication mission: to help business people sort the pearls from the pebbles in the ever-expanding universe of marketing technology.

So, to paraphrase Bette Davis in the 1950 classic movie All About Eve, “Fasten your seat belts, it’s going to be a bumpy ride!” But together, we’ll tame that wild techno-beast and use it to out-pace our competition.

For the best and brightest thoughts about the science of business and marketing, click on the “Links” tab at www.informaven.com. If you have any links to add, let me know and I’ll pass them along…


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The Data Doc makes house calls
to cure your business ills. If your firm could benefit from an expert in research, data analysis, copywriting, proofreading, video production, audio recording, and podcasting, or if you simply need help figuring out what's ailing your company,
contact the Doc by e-mailing
JD at DataDocsDailyDose.com for fast relief.

Dr. J.D. Mosley-Matchett


As advisor to a broad range of clients, including IBM, Texas Instruments, and J.C. Penney, Dr. Mosley-Matchett combines both practical experience and advanced training in modern marketing methodologies. Her background includes multimedia and video production, Web development, and the latest in marketing research methodologies. Internationally recognized as a published author and noted researcher, Dr. Mosley-Matchett has been a member of the graduate faculty at the University of Texas at Arlington and has conducted numerous seminars on a variety of marketing topics for the International Institute for Research, various conferences, and numerous professional organizations. She currently serves as the Managing Director for Words & Images, Ltd., an interactive communications development firm located in the Cayman Islands.
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