Tag Archives: market strategy

Mug Keeps Drinks Hot!

It’s a small thing, but a pet peeve of many coffee drinkers is that they absolutely hate it when their mugs of coffee get cold, and have to be microwaved or refilled in order to be hot again. Reheating changes the taste. And then it gets cold again, and has to be reheated yet again, and so on…There should be a solution for the cold desktop mug of coffee.

And, now there is a solution. Enter the Ember Ceramic Mug to solve the dilemma. The mug incorporates technology that helps keep the drink at whatever temperature is needed. Using Ember’s app, the ideal temperature for each beverage can be set automatically. The sleekly styled mug has a change cooling system, micro-processor controlled heating system, and network of sensors – all working to keep the beverage at the ideal temperature!

The innovative design won Ember a coveted TIME Magazine’s Best Inventions of 2017 award. Priced at $79.95, Ember’s mug is not cheap. The white ceramic mug comes with charging coaster, is fully submersible (but wash by hand), and can maintain temperatures for hours on end.

Coffee, anyone?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

    1. Discuss the importance of setting objectives. Explain SMART objectives – specific, measureable, achievable, realistic, and time-bound.
    2. Show Ember’s Web site and products: https://ember.com/
    3. Video is available: https://youtu.be/7Vy_y52oZos
    4. Video: https://youtu.be/j9YAvpJTF9w
    5. Divide students into teams. Have each team develop five SMART objectives for this product.
    6. Discuss the objectives. How would the objectives change if a different marketing strategy was used?
    7. Debrief the exercise.

Source: Pierce, D. (12 Dec., 2017). I can’t stop drinking coffee out of this temperature-regulated mug. Wired Magazine.

Leave a comment

Filed under Classroom Activities

Kellogg Buys RXBAR

Consumer taste trends are moving to healthy and natural foods.  Nutrition and energy bars are a still-growing industry segment that is particularly appealing to Millennials. Yet, many of the older, established CPG firms struggle to attract and retain sales from that market segment. What should a company do? While it can certainly develop new products, market adoption of the new products can take valuable time and development itself takes resources and money away from a company’s established products.

A fast way to enter a new market with a new product is through acquisition. Kellogg recently took just this approach and acquired the very trendy RXBAR nutrition bar brand for a cool $600 million. The four-year old company currently has built its sales up to about $120 million and has added a children’s bar line, also.

RXBAR is known for a “no B.S.” innovative spirit. The brand highlights its commitment to whole food, protein bars that contain simple ingredients. The bars are gluten-free, soy-free, and dairy-free, tapping into a growing food product segment. RXBAR has a distinctive package that clearly states ingredients on the front of each package. For example: “3 Egg Whites, 5 Almonds, 4 Cashews, 2 Dates, No B.S.”

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

    1. Discuss the four primary marketing strategies: market penetration, market development, product development, and diversification.
    2. Show RXBAR Web site: https://www.rxbar.com/
    3. Video about the company story: https://youtu.be/aMFwfKThixA
    4. Which strategy did RXBAR use?
    5. Which strategy is Kellogg using?
    6. Divide students into teams. Have each team select one of the four different strategies and explain why that strategy could be used to market RXBAR.
    7. Have each team determine the marketing mix (4Ps) to support their strategy choice.
    8. Debrief the exercise.

Source: Buss, D. (2017, Oct. 9). Kellogg looks to “no B.S.” RXBAR for growth and inspiration. Brandchannel.com

Leave a comment

Filed under Classroom Activities

Register Robot System in Japan

Do you ever get tired of waiting in line to check out of a grocery store? In the future, the check-out process will be streamlined, using more robotic registers. Recently, Panasonic teamed with Lawson food stores in Japan for a trial run of its new robotic check-out system. The “Reji-Robo” robotic check-out uses RFID tags to scan the items in a shopper’s basket, and then even bags the groceries automatically. (RFID tags are thin, small electronics components that wirelessly communicate within a short distance.)

Panasonic’s robotic check-out is somewhat similar to Amazon Go’s concept store in Seattle. However, with Reji-Robo, customers get a sensor-equipped basket when they walk into the stores, then choose items and place them into the smart basket. In a step beyond Amazon Go, the Panasonic basket once placed in to the robotic check-out system, automatically computes the transaction, the bottom of the basket opens, and the items are automatically lowered into plastic bags for the shopper.

The RFID system also holds promise to speed up the supply chain, increase accuracy, improve productivity, and improve inventory control and tracking.

What’s in your basket?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss some of the more frustrating and costly parts of retail and shopping.
  2. Show the Panasonic video: https://youtu.be/Hpp-3Ver7ig
  3. If students are not familiar with Amazon Go, view the video and concept at: https://www.amazon.com/b?node=16008589011#
  4. Discuss the four primary marketing strategies: market penetration, market development, product development, and diversification.
  5. Which strategy is Panasonic using for this product? Why?
  6. Divide students into teams. Have each team select one of the four different strategies and explain why that strategy could be used to market robotic check-out systems.

Source: Brandchannel.com

Leave a comment

Filed under Classroom Activities