• Bringing You The Gas

    It was just a matter of time before direct-to-consumer delivery reached the fueling industry, and with the widespread adoption of apps among the buying public, it appears that consumers will soon have the ability to order up just about anything. Gasoline...
  • If You Build It, Will They Come?

    In the movie Field of Dreams, t he protagonist puts a baseball field in the middle of a corn field and attracts a bunch of ghosts to play one final game. The famous line "If you build it, they will come" seems especially appropriate when it...
  • 100 Years Of "Gift Dressing"

    What do World War One and Christmas have in common? Gift wrapping was invented back in 1917, but back then it was called " gift dressing", which actually makes a whole bunch of sense. Kansas City-based Hallmark Cards Inc., a brand that is still...
  • Coffee vs. Tea

    In previous posts, we have established that the market for coffee retailers is absolutely saturated and that smaller stores are now experiencing declines while even the growth rate at Starbucks has slowed considerably. But even when there are too many...
  • Coffee Crunch?

    A quick look around any downtown area will tell you that coffee retailers, led by the far-too-ubiquitous Starbucks, have saturated the market with their shops. To say this market isn't crowded is to ignore the fact that "specialty coffee"...
  • The Truth About Innovation: Part Three

    Continued From Part Two By now, the point of this three-part article should be abundantly clear. We in industry have overused the term “innovation”, and are therefore somewhat desensitized to technological and product developments. Consumers...
  • The Truth About Innovation: Part Two

    Continued from Part One Product Development is one of my favorite university courses to teach, and this important class we learn that there are three forms of innovation. A continuous innovation describes a new product that requires almost no change...
  • The Truth About Innovation: Part One

    Natural ingredients come from everywhere, and many of them have multiple applications that meet a broad assortment of consumer needs. Every year there are a handful of popular ingredients that dominate new product development, and each year the list changes...
  • Gucci Grabs Young Shoppers

    With all of the talk about how the vast majority of traditional brands are struggling mightily to resonate with a massive cohort of fickle young consumers, it's nice to see one of your grandmother's classic brands emerge as a winner in bridging...
  • Costco's Catastrophe Kits

    It often pays to address a niche market, which could be defined as a relatively small market that features few if any competitors. If you have a unique enough good or service and the market is large enough to reach and serve profitably, niche marketing...
  • Tesla Not Good at Production, Promises

    They make pretty cool cars, and that Elon Musk is one heck of a marketer, but the fact of the matter is that Tesla has been an unprofitable maker of very expensive electric cars for well over a decade, and has failed to meet almost every production deadline...
  • The Need for Nuggets

    Is there really a need in the marketplace for more chicken nuggets? That's the important product question marketers at both Wendy's and Burger King think they have already answered, but interestingly, the conclusions the two have drawn aren't...
  • Making Lidl Progress

    There was much fanfare when the German grocery giant entered the U.S. market, opening a headquarters in Virginia and challenging long-held turf in that state, Georgia, Delaware, and the Carolinas. The plan is to gain a nice following and expand outward...
  • A Disciplined Approach To New Product Development: Part Three

    (Continued from the previous post Part Two) The last four steps of the New Product Development Process are as follows: Prototype Design: In this stage, research and development, in conjunction with production and marketing, develops one or more working...
  • A Disciplined Approach To New Product Development: Part Two

    (continued from the previous post "Part One") The first four steps of the New Product Development Process are as follows: Idea Generation: Ideas come from many places, including existing customers, employees, supply chain partners, competitors...
  • A Disciplined Approach to New Product Development: Part One

    New product development is important. This is an obvious statement to be sure, but until renowned economist Joseph Schumpeter observed that innovation is instrumental to an organization’s success, and that in extreme form new ideas can “creatively”...
  • Ignoring The Internet Cheese

    In our ongoing quest to transform what we learn through social media about attitudes towards our products into some form of actionable marketing strategy, we marketers have a tendency to overreact when we hear something negative. And when it comes to...
  • An Organic Opportunity

    He did it for Annie's Homegrown, so why can't he do it for a two year-old start up that wants to market USDA Certified Organic baby food to the health-conscious masses? John Foraker took a small natural products brand and turned it into an acquisition...
  • One Thousand For A "Ten"

    The Apple Marketing Machine is in full swing with the announcement that a new iteration of the iPhone is pending. Just when it will be released is still a bit of a mystery, but it will indeed be released eventually, and to much media attention, both social...
  • "It" Is A Hit

    After a very disappointing summer and a year that has seen the movie industry continue along the lackluster path it has taken over the past decade or so, the adaptation of Stephen King's 1980's horror novel, "It", broke a number of box...
  • The Sushi-Style Burrito

    In a new product development twist we would expect from the always-creative marketers at Taco Bell, coffee drink-retailer Starbucks has decided introduce a food-fusion product that is part burrito and part sushi. If you are confused as to why they would...
  • Craft Beer: From Booming to Brooding

    Readers of "KnowNow! Marketing" should know that craft beer sales have been slowing since their peak in 2013 of 20% annual expansion for a category whose boom began in the early 90's and now boasts 5,562 breweries in the United States. This...
  • Coca-Cola Zero Sugar

    Once upon a time there were more diet sodas on the market than there are at present, but to most men, drinking any one of them wasn't considered to be very cool. And so Coca-Cola exploited this market opportunity with a major product introduction...
  • Becoming "Q-Potle"?

    It is no secret that Chipotle is struggling to regain the "best burrito" status it only recently held among the burrito-eating public as well as investors. Health scares have severely damaged the company's reputation (and stock price), and...
  • Electric Dreams: Part Two

    There has been so much hype in the media lately about electric vehicles, one would think that there has been some sort of new innovation to bring the cost of these vehicles down far enough to become marketable without heavily government intervention....