Tag Archives: global marketing

Farewell to the iPod

The iPod is officially dead. Yes, you read this correctly. After 16 years, with more than 400 million units sold worldwide, Apple has pulled the plug on the iPod Nano and Shuffle, removing the product line from its online stores. To many people, the iPod was a revolutionary device. The portable device with its iconic white headphones enabled people to take their full music library anywhere, giving listeners control of playlists and music.

iPod launched in 2001 with a unit holding 5 GB of data for $399, quickly followed in 2002 with a 10 GB unit at $499. Things really changed when Apple launched the iTunes Music Store in 2003, setting off a landslide in music downloads as well as music piracy concerns. In 2007, Apple launched the iPhone, which included capabilities beyond just making phone calls, incorporating music capabilities in the phone.

How many iPods have you owned?

R.I.P. iPod. You changed the world of music.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the stages in the product life cycle. What are the marketing objectives in each stage?
  2. Divide students into teams. Have each team draw a product life cycle and place various products and services into each stage.
  3. Next, discuss the iPod and it’s journey through the product life cycle: http://www.macworld.com/article/1053499/home-tech/ipodtimeline.html
  4. Show Apple’s online store: https://www.apple.com/. What product line is missing from the store?
  5. Poll students: Who had an iPod? What do they use now for music?
  6. Show first iPod commercial: https://youtu.be/mE_bDNaYAr8
  7. Next, have students brainstorm on how to reposition or revise products/services to that they can move into an earlier stage of the life cycle.

Source:  Wired, other news sources

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Made in the USA?

It’s that patriotic time of year in the USA when citizens (and shoppers) show their support and pride in America. As could be expected, companies that advertise their patriotism can use it as a very effective marketing tool. After all, people want to be proud of their country and its accomplishments. But, what does it really mean when a company promotes its product as being “made in the USA?”

According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), if a product is advertised as “Made in the USA” then “all or virtually all” of the product must have been made in the U.S. But, what does “virtually all” mean?

Again, the FTC states that the product should contain no (or negligible) foreign content. This means that all significant parts and processing must be of U.S. origin and final processing must also take place in the U.S. (includes the 50 states, District of Columbia, and all U.S. territories and possessions). These rules also apply to products that might not explicitly claim “made in the USA,” but may use images or American flags or U.S. maps, such as stating “true American quality.”

Take a close look at companies that state “made in the USA” and make sure the claim in legitimate.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Poll students: What does it mean if a product advertises that it is made in America? What products make this claim?
  2. Show the FTC requirements: https://www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/business-center/guidance/complying-made-usa-standard and have students examine the requirements.
  3. Divide students into teams. Have each team search the Internet for products that claim to be “made in the USA” and examine if the claims are accurate.
  4. For products that do not make a full made in USA claim, what are other messages that could be made to clearly identify origins and processes?

Source:  Truth in Advertising

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ReUse and ReCycle IKEA Products

Sustainability is an important topic to consumers and companies alike. We all hate to waste products and materials if they might have a future use. And, yet, it sometimes seems as if certain products are made to deliberately fall apart sooner than we consumers thinks they should. What should a consumer do? Well, one answer is to repurpose the aging item. Case in point: IKEA’s Stockholm carpet.

IKEA continues its efforts to help consumers think of ways to reuse its products (remember the “Big Blue Bag” article we wrote recently?). The latest idea from the company is 18 different ways to turn an old Stockholm carpet into new items, instead of just throwing it out. Some of the creative ideas include:

  • Doormat
  • Dog blanket
  • Shopping bag
  • Snowshoes
  • Stair carpet
  • Punching bag
  • Compost insulator
  • Scratching post

Think of items in your house. Can they be reused instead of tossed in the trash?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss how companies can take initiatives on recycling and reusing worn items. What are examples that students can think of?
  2. Show IKEA’s Stockholm blog: https://m2.ikea.com/no/no/ideas/-ebc301c155a511e7b6087300b3bddef9, and play the video.
  3. What are other products and companies that could use a similar approach to recycle and reuse?
  4. Divide students into teams. Have each team work on a product that could be reused into a new product.
  5. Alternative: Bring in old rugs or other products and have each team work on repurposing the item into something new.

Source:   Creativity Online

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