Monthly Archives: April 2010

“Democtratising knowledge” in demand chains

Democratising  knowledge, isn’t this a lovely term! I have heard it used on a number of occasions recently, and it came up again in an extraordinary TED presentation by Stephen Wolfram . In just two words it nails the complex … Continue reading

Posted in Alliance management, Communication, Demand chains, Social Media, Strategy | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Are they really friends?

Anthropologist Robin Dunbar theorised that the maximum number of people any individual could maintain a relationship with was 150, which has become known as Dunbar’s number. It reflects the cognitive maximum for someone to know everyone in a group, and … Continue reading

Posted in Communication, Management, Social Media | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Has the web has changed category behavior?

Running a qualitative consumer research group recently, one of the participants surprised me with a metaphor that made great sense. She said that the web had taught her to “forage”, her  term, looking for stuff of interest, checking out the … Continue reading

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Thee secrets of successful innovation

Successful innovation rarely comes from a formulaic approach where the marketing department has a brainstorm, prioritises the outcomes, then they progress through a “gated” process culminating in a launch. Usually it comes from three sources: A sufficiently close relationship with customers … Continue reading

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Don’t listen to just your customers

Another of the management paradoxes littered through this blog , and this one is counter to almost everything I have ever written. In the context of true  innovation, listening to customers exclusively leads you to adjusting, improving, repackaging what you … Continue reading

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Healthy deckchairs

It is a scary thought, but roughly 30% of our economy (Public sector expenditure) is subject to the disciplines of neither the market or democracy.  Bureaucracies are institutions that thrive on complexity, it is far easier to make an existing … Continue reading

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Transactions and obligations in a demand chain

Isn’t it interesting, when we pay for something, we have an expectation of what that transaction will deliver to us, but there is little sense of lingering obligation. However, if we just do something for someone, any small piece of … Continue reading

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Customers drive chains

Integrated value chains are nothing new. IBM had one before it started “outsourcing” what turned out to be the future to Microsoft and Intel, Ford had one at  centered around the Dearborn factory, from where the company controlled by owning … Continue reading

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What is the problem, and how do we fix it?

Working my way through a book on the implementation of “Lean”  called “Manage to learn” an interesting book that further evolves the textbook as a story genre started by Eliyahu Goldratt’s best selling book “The Goal” originally published back in … Continue reading

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Effectiveness, not just amount, of spending

All you hear about currently is the Australian “health debate” a debate the pollies have decided to have as a political exercise, are discussions about who gets to spend the money i.e. exercise the power,  it has little to do … Continue reading

Posted in Management, OE, Operations, Personal Rant | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Transparency effect

Can you imagine the changes that would have occurred in the behavior of the tobacco industry in the 70’s and 80’s had there been the “net-enabled” communication tools available then, when the big tobacco companies were conducting a rear guard … Continue reading

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What is different now?

“The budget should be balanced, the Treasury should be refilled, public debt should be reduced, the arrogance of officialdom should be tempered and controlled, and the assistance to foreign lands should be curtailed lest  Rome become bankrupt. People must again learn … Continue reading

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Visions & Values

These are sometimes used interchangeably, and they should not be, as whilst they go together, they are very different. Visions may change, values should not, and increasingly, as we are in a world of commodity offerings, and I suspect the … Continue reading

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Knowledge is a pre-requisite, not a guarantor.

Deep knowledge is pretty common these days, the facilities to accrue it are readily and freely available, and it is no longer a key differentiator. However, what is still not common is what has always separated the run of the … Continue reading

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Project collaboration paradox

Getting collaboration when you really need it, when the interaction can add value is usually at the beginning of a project. The closer you get to the completion of the project, the more the parameters tend to be set, it … Continue reading

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Great strategy = concurrent mutually exclusive ideas.

Great marketing strategy is hard to develop, if it was easy, everyone would be doing it. The difficulty lies in the need to hold several often opposing ideas in the brain at the same time, very hard for most. First, … Continue reading

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Forecasting and demand planning.

Developing a forecast of what you need to make to sell is a different proposition to doing a demand forecast, it is much more than a semantic difference. A forecast is usually an extrapolation, sometimes very sophisticated, but an extrapolation … Continue reading

Posted in Demand chains, Management, Operations | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Value, not price.

 Value is an outcome of the price and the benefits delivered. Value = price + benefits As marketers, we are normally consumed by price, it drives our priorities, measures our success, and dictates channel and NPD priorities. Consumers by contrast, … Continue reading

Posted in Branding, Category, Marketing | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

A nice little pun

Band building is hard, it is about creating and nurturing the stories about the products that have a resonance with a section of the market to whom the story has particular relevance, that sustain the difference between yours and the … Continue reading

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Toyota quality paradox

Toyota has been lined up for a maximum fine of $16.4 million by US regulators  for failing to report a fault within the statutory time. In the scheme of things the fine is a flea bite for Toyota, but the … Continue reading

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