Tag Archives: product life cycle

Happy 60th Birthday, Barbie!

Happy 60th birthday to Barbie!

Launched at the New York Toy Fair at a price of $3.00 way back in 1959, today’s Barbie dolls have taken new shapes, sizes, colors, and careers into their stride. While Barbie has often been criticized, the original vision for Barbie – to encourage girls to think about their futures – still holds today. The doll’s original figure (tall, busty, Caucasian) is also still around, but it has also been broadened and diversified to fit today’s girls and society.

Today’s Barbie dolls include four different body types, seven skin tones, 22 eye colors, 24 hairstyles, and an extensive wardrobe of clothes, accessories, houses, and cars. Barbie has had dozens of careers. She is not only a fashionista, she embraces careers such as actress, politicians, doctors, athletes,  artists, journalists, mountaineers, activists, astronauts, teachers, and more. There simply is no limit to what Barbie – and girls – can accomplish. Barbie is equally at home in a robotics lab as she is on a farm.

And now Barbie is also taking on gender gap in The Dream Gap Project. Beginning at age five, many girls develop limiting beliefs about themselves and what they can accomplish. By age seven, girls are more likely to think that boys are smarter than girls. Barbie is taking this on by showing role model dolls who illustrate what is possible.

What do you want to be when you grow up?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the product life cycle.
  2. Where does Barbie fit in the life cycle?
  3. How does the toy remain relevant?
  4. Show video of Barbie history: https://youtu.be/DXFVaYTI3uQ
  5. Show Barbie Web site: https://barbie.mattel.com/en-us/about/role-models.html?icid=home_body-2_module_role-models_p1
  6. Show the Dream Gap Project site: https://barbie.mattel.com/en-us/about/dream-gap.html
  7. Divide students into team. What else can Mattel do with Barbie?

Source: Klara, R. (25 February 2019). Here’s how much Barbie has changed since her debut almost 60 years ago.

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Segway: Innovation and Re-Innovation

Perhaps you have ridden a Segway at some point in time, but it is much more likely you have not. First introduced in 2001, Segway was promoted as the world’s first self-balancing human transport vehicle. The product hype was enormous. People around the world clamored for the product that was supposed to revolutionize transportation, particularly in the last mile. But the hype never came to fruition. What happened?

Industry analysts had originally predicted that the innovative Segway would quickly reach $1 billion in sales. However, by 2007, it had reached only a fraction of that amount and growth appeared to stall out. Why? One key reason was the hefty price tag of $4,950, placing it outside the reach of most consumers. Another reason was that, well, people looked like geeks when riding it. It wasn’t cool, nor was it especially safe. Even then-President Bush was filmed on it while falling. And later, the company owner died while operating a Segway near his home.

This pushed the vehicle into the area of mall cops and tourists. However, in 2015, Chinese company Ninebot bought the company to use in developing other markets and products. Ninebot is a leading manufacturer of today’s electric scooters which are seeing strong acceptance in the marketplace, even as they too face safety issues.

But still, there are problems in the last mile. How do you navigate?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the stages in the product life cycle.
  2. What are the marketing objectives in each stage?
  3. Poll students: Who knows anything about Segway?
  4. Where is Segway on the PLC? Where are electric scooters?
  5. Show Segway’s Web site: http://www.segway.com/
  6. Show Ninebot’s Segway site: http://uk-en.segway.com/
  7. Ask students what happened to Segway? Why wasn’t the product a hit?
  8. Show video story of Segway: https://youtu.be/U-l4Kf9NUJo
  9. What is the company doing now to re-invent itself? Can it succeed

Source: CNN Business

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Cheetos Flamin’ Hot Pop-Up Restaurant

Cheetos have long been a favorite snack food in America, but it has a fairly limited menu application. Or so one might have thought. After all, it’s just a snack food, right? Wrong!

In a new promotional campaign this fall, Cheetos is launching a Flamin’ Hot pop-up restaurant in Hollywood for three-days in September, featuring meals developed by celebrity chef Roy Choi. The restaurant is named The Flamin’ Hot Spot and all the dishes are inspired by Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. (The concept is similar to one that Cheetos did a year ago with a pop-up restaurant in New York City with a menu developed by Chef Anne Burrell.)

According to Cheetos, they noticed a trend among customers and restaurants with Cheetos finding its way into creative menus including bagels, sushi, and burritos. The Flamin’ Hot Spot will have appetizers, main courses, and desserts.

Some of the menu highlights include:

  • Hot Ap-Paw-Tizers
  • Flamin’ Hot Elotes
  • Flamin’ Hot Chipotle Ranch Wings
  • Flamin’ Eats
  • Xxtra Flamin’ Hot Rice Bowl
  • Hot Cheetos Burrito
  • Cheetos Sweetos Hot Cakes
  • Chester Cheetah’s Churros

Unfortunately, if you want to dine there, the three-day event is already sold-out and has a long wait list! But don’t worry – all of the recipes will be available for free in a digital cookbook on the Cheetos Web site. Ingredients are also available on Amazon Fresh.

Are you hungry for something flamin’ hot now?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Poll students: Who eats Cheetos?
  2. View video: https://youtu.be/-RWb_8G6Eyo
  3. Show Web site: https://www.cheetosflaminhotspot.com/#menu
  4. How does the restaurant fit into a promotion plan for Cheetos?
  5. Does this new restaurant change the positioning of Cheetos in the product life cycle?

Source:  Ad Week

 

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