How Commodity Products Can Be Differentiated by Customer Experience Innovations

| Management, Marketing

Diane and I celebrated New Year’s Eve with our friends Kevin and Teresa. Kevin and I got to talking about how products categorized as “commodities” because they are not significantly different from their competitors’ products actually can create extraordinary differentiation. Kevin became wealthy with his idea that every Behr paint store should have the technology …

Thinking about Apple’s Pricing Strategy

| Marketing, Technology

Pricing strategy is one of the most important marketing decisions. Here’s a little history on how we thought about pricing in the early days of the Mac, which may help marketers understand how Apple might be thinking about pricing in the post-PC era. The early Mac had a higher COGS (cost-of-goods-sold) than the MS.DOS PC. …

Building Big Brands: Payoff Huge If Obstacles Can Be Overcome

| Global Business, Marketing

If building big brands is so valuable, why aren’t there more success stories? My experience is that the payoff can be huge, but there are obstacles that must be overcome. Big companies have the resources; however, middle managers are more often empowered to “say no” than “yes.” Timing is everything. The only reason for small …

Mitt Romney’s Big Brand Marketing Lesson

| Marketing

The most expensive Big Brand marketing campaign ever has just concluded with an overwhelming victory for President Obama. This blog is not about my politics, but about Big Brand marketing lessons learned from this Presidential campaign and a simple potentially game-changing suggestion.

Mentoring the Next Generation

| Marketing

One of my great pleasures is mentoring young people who are armed with fresh ideas, boundless energy, and a hunger to learn about entrepreneurship, marketing, and disruptive innovation. Thanks to social media sites such as Facebook, our newly-connected world allows fledgling entrepreneurs to find seasoned businessmen like me and plumb our experience. Recently I received …