Product Strategy & Selectivity
Last year, Cisco acquired one of the most popular products on the planet, the Flip digital camcorder for $590 million and promptly killed the product. In 2010, HP bought Palm for $1.2 billion and pulled the plug on it. Last year, RIM released the Playbook tablet and after developing it for a year while neglecting its one true strength in the world, the Blackberry smart phone — RIM might not survive this. And finally, for the first time ever, Microsoft just announced its first quarterly loss — in the same quarter it announced its questionable Surface tablet and the acquisition of part of Barnes & Nobles’ Nook e-reader.
Lots of examples here, but what do they all have in common?
A lack of a focused, highly selective, exclusionary product strategy.These companies — and maybe your company? — don’t know which products to say no to. There’s a reason Apple only has a few major product categories. And there’s no reason that Microsoft should be in so many different and diverse areas. It’s much easier to kill an idea than a multi-million or billion-dollar investment. Be extremely selective in what you try to bring to market. The effort, and the distraction, are enormous.
Good marketing is uncommon, but a highly focused approach to selecting your product or services is the rarest of commodities, and, almost always, a rate-determining step to success.
The Evangelist Marketing Institute is a private strategy and marketing consulting and coaching practice with clients that include Logitech, TiVo, and Sprint. Details about my work are here.
The Evangelist Marketing Minute is a weekly thinking launch point that is always short enough to read in about 60 seconds. It covers marketing, branding, positioning, language, and public relations. Your email address is never shared, with anybody, for any reason
I'm a market strategist, consultant, coach and speaker for product and services companies that are looking for dramatic growth and increased revenues.
My clients include Fortune 500 firms like Amazon and Sprint - as well as publicly traded companies like Logitech, TiVo, Virgin Mobile and Yelp.