Introduction to Marketplace How to Win
The formula for success in business and marketing is very simple.
Make lots of people happy and you can earn a lot of money.
Here are the rules:
- Find out what people want.
- Give them what they want.
- Tell them you have what they want (advertise).
- Hire sales people to explain how you have the solution to their needs (distribution and sales force management).
- Collect the money for a job well done.
Sounds easy, right?
Of course, there are a couple of things that get in the way.
First, not all customers are alike. One offer will not work for everyone. People have different tastes, preferences, needs, etc.
As a result, many potential customers will wait until they find the “right” solution for their needs. To paraphrase a famous quote, you can satisfy some of the people all of the time, but never all of the people all of the time. So, demand may not be as great as you would like or hope.
The way around this problem is to discover the differences in needs among your customers (market research), break the customers down into smaller groups with similar needs (segmentation), and then develop a strategy for each group (target marketing).
Second, everyone wants more for less. A lower price for the same goods should help in generating more demand and taking business away from your competition.
Sure, you would like to sell for less, but you have to pay your expenses and earn a profit.
One solution to this pricing dilemma is often found in larger sales volumes. If you can generate large sales volumes, production costs per unit will usually drop dramatically. Lower costs for the goods sold will allow you to lower your prices and/or increase your profits.
How do you create larger sales volumes? Offer a better product at a better price and tell everyone about it (advertising and sales force).
Third, there will always be someone that wants to make money in the same market as you. Competitors will always emerge and try to take your sales and profits.
How will they do this?
Smart competitors will study the customers’ needs PLUS study what you have to offer (benchmark) and then create and sell a better solution. Usually, they find a group (segment) whose needs are not well served and then develop a superior strategy targeted at that group.
Fourth, customers will always gravitate towards the better offer.
Your job is never done. You must always check your offer against the customers’ evolving needs (satisfaction level) and that of the competition (benchmark) and make sure you have the better product, price, promotion, and distribution.
In a nutshell, be the best at giving the customer what the customer wants. Then advertise to the customers about how good you are at meeting their needs. This should create lots of sales that will drive down your costs and thus allow you to offer good prices with good profits.
Of course, it is not this easy, but this is the essence of business and marketing.
Keep these guidelines in mind as you compete in Marketplace. If you follow them, you will be successful. You will be a winner in Marketplace!