大品牌Canon 的 e-Marketing 策略 – 網頁設計篇

 

 

日本品牌Canon近月為了宣傳新產品Canon PIXMA Smart Office,請了葛民輝及中美混血兒Jessica C.擔任代言人,不但有TVC(電視廣告)、地鐵Display Ad等,更把廣告宣傳至網絡,令市場爆光率激增。網絡宣傳顧問Adams逐一分析他們的網上宣傳策略及技巧。

策略一:設計互動網站利用趣味性吸引人流

產品的網頁(http://www.canon.com.hk/smart)smart home為題,把網頁設計成一個家,生動又巧妙地加入了宣傳產品的資料和其特性,把資訊軟滲透於潛在顧客中,相比只有文字的網頁來得有效。網頁更加入了遊戲元素,例如上傳自己戔鬼相片,參加比賽,更有機會獲得獎品,激發瀏覽者的興趣和互動性。

 

策略二:有獎遊戲吸納更多潛在顧客

遊戲中加入facebook 連結,把自制有趣的圖片與身邊的朋友分享,成為話題之一,務求更多人可以留意到Canon的遊戲,令爆光率十倍甚至百倍增加。

策略三:網路廣告無處不再

為了吸引人進入網站,Canon 在最多香港人看的網站yahoo使用搜索引擎,利用以上點擊收費的廣告,比傳統廣告更容易量度廣告成效及控制成本。Canon 更於瀏覽量極高的網站(Apple daily online,. MSN, Uwantsfacebook)刊登banner ad,令產品在目標顧客的網路上無處不再。

品牌策略建議

一個成功的網站,最終的目的是可以做到增加銷售、建立品牌、吸納潛在顧客的資料(電郵地址)Canon 這個網站在建立品牌方面都能吸引較的年輕一代,這方面都是成功的。

吸納更多潛在顧客

網站上有收取電子報的功能,是有效收取顧客資料的做法,可惜功能未見明顯,建議可以用明顯的字體顏色突出功能。另外,轉寄給朋友透過轉寄,可以取得其他潛在顧客的電郵,吸納大量潛在顧客,建議多利用此功能,在不同的子頁中加插功能,方便顧客可以容易把網站宣揚開去。

喚起顧客行動增加銷售

Canon 網站在網上、網下的宣傳活動已製造了一定的awareness(知名度),但網站的設計都以遊戲和產品的資訊為主,欠缺了Call to Action(喚起行動) 的元素,網站未能喚起顧客即時購買的行動,建議可以利用下載優惠劵以優惠價吸引欲購買產品的顧客。

要成功在網絡上突圍而出,可以參考多些各大、小品牌的宣傳策略,Adams 日後會與你們分享最新的市場策略。如有任何查詢,可致電:2723 9977

Business is all about negotiation!

Business is all about Negotiation!

Business is all about Negotiation!

By Matthew Kwan

Principal Consultant of Adams (www.adamshk.com)

Copyright © 2010.

Do you realize how much negotiation do you do everyday? You may negotiate with your customers for the most favourable prices, order quantity, delivery timeand condition. You may push your sub-ordinates and co-workers to deliver the jobs on time and with high quality that meet your expectation. You may try so hard to show your performance to your boss and managers in order to get a better pay rise or promotion in the next review cycle. All these show that doing business is all about negotiation!

Fundamentals of negotiation

The Chinese characters for business (“生意”) have a wonderful meaning of “flexibility of an intention”(i.e. 靈活生動的意向). Hence, you must view doing business as a negotiation process to reach an ultimate goal which leads to a mutually agreeable intention. I personally think that you will never reach the ultimate and sustainable results if you are not thinking win-win during any business processes! You may win once or twice but you will not get far if you are not gearing towards a mutual benefit in a business agreement. Believe it or not, giving way may actually result in gaining ground! This is exactly the platform of negotiation.

Strategy of negotiation

Understanding of the intention of the other party is the fundamental skill of negotiation. Without realizing the other party‘s underlying needs and intention is not going to help reaching any agreeable results. Another very important basis of negotiation is focusing on the big picture rather than on specific details. You may trade off something small in exchange for a bigger, more meaningful and longer term benefit. Therefore, at the end of the day, it is all about return on investment (ROI) calculation in the macro view.

Tactics of negotiation

You have to be courageous enough to explore the depth of the water. In the same sense, you have to be courageous enough to make your offer during a negotiation. Otherwise, you would never know exactly how far the other party is willing to give way. Don’t be shy to make your offer yet the offer must be “reasonable” enough to justify by itself. You could start high as it gives yourself enough room to back down. Don’t hit your baseline so early and easily. By doing this, you are likely to gain ground than hitting a dead end!

Best negotiators are those who have high Emotional Quotient (EQ) with calm and firm responses.Sometimes, sense of humor can be a very good tool to ease the tension during tough negotiation but never overdo it with sarcasm as it will create a disrespectful impression! This is definitely not easy when you are facing unfavorable situations without too much ground!Hence, before you enter into any negotiation no matter it is a customer meeting, a job interview, a performance review…etc, you should really get yourself well prepared with options of possibilities including competitive information and competitive offers from other parties in order to gain ground.However, as mentioned earlier, win-win should be the ultimate objective but we have to also accept the fact on the other hand that such status is not always possible!

Summary

In certain culture, negotiation is just part of life and people would expect to negotiate at all time.However, majority of us are not natural born negotiators.But with some very simple training, we can be a better negotiator in a relatively short time. One very practical thing to do is to remind ourselves in all circumstances that to ask if the offer made by the others, including your customers, suppliers, co-workers, managers…etc., the best they can do? You will be surprised that 80% of time you will get a discount, a better offer, a faster response or even a better career at the end without much negotiation! So, are you willing to ask?

Matthew Kwan is a Principal Consultant of Adams Company Limited (www.adamshk.com) and is responsible for business consulting and enterprise training. He is an entrepreneur, author, speaker, lecturer and consultant working with enterprises and organizations in the commercial and Christian communities. He served for many years in multi-national companies including Intel, JP Morgan and Jardine and has broad experience in sales & marketing and management in multicultural and international settings.

Synergizing Products and Services

By Matthew Kwan
Principal Consultant, Adams Company Limited
© Copyright. October 10, 2007

Many entrepreneurs I know are never short of business ideas. I am not exaggerating but they can literally come up with new product or service ideas everyday if not every minute! However, I think this is a frightening phenomenon as I see a lot of the ideas are very demanding for resources in order to develop market opportunities and they cannot leverage with each other at all.

One very basic theory I want to share here is products and services must synergize with each other in a same business in order to maximize your return on investments. Otherwise, you will have a big chance of wasting unnecessary resources (time, money and labor) and duplicating your effort to grow your products or services market(s). If you can really synergize your products and services, you may also experience an exponential rate of growth.

Below are some of very useful synergizing techniques on how to synergize your products and services that I learnt throughout my sales & marketing career:

  1. Door Opener Product
  2. Multiplying Effect
  3. Packaging
  4. Consumable & Repurchase

1. Door Opener Product – In order to lower the barrier of your customers’ buying action, you must choose a “Door Opener Product” among all of your products and services. This Door Opener Product must be very attractive both in terms of features and pricing. You have to be very aggressive about your pricing strategy of this product in order to win over your competition. As long as you are not loosing money in real term, do not worry too much about your profit, yet! You will be surprised on how much more of other business you can get through this Door Opener Product.

  • Example: A not so famous Shanghais restaurant is offering $1 for half a dozen dumplings. People are queuing outside for a long time in order to eat in such restaurant and of course I was one of them. When I observed such interesting scene, nobody in the restaurant was actually ordering just $1 dumplings but a table full of food and I mean nobody! By now, you should get what I mean. Though the other food is just average, the Door Opener Dumplings are bringing huge Profit to the Shanghais restaurant.
  • Comments: You must ensure the perceived value of the Door Opener Product is at high cost and it can achieve good customer satisfaction. Otherwise, the door will never be opened!


2. Multiplying Effect
– When all of your products and services are inter-related or inter-dependent, your customers are likely to buy from you the second product/service than your neighboring shop in order to minimize risks and complication. Also, Convenience is a big governing factor for customer buying behavior. A supermarket is a very good example of convenience buying. You maybe buying a pack of gum in the beginning but you may end up buying a trolley of items! Therefore, even you maybe selling something with a small value in the beginning, the Multiplying Effect can be huge for potential or future sales from the same customer if you can build up the Trust. Trust is very important in business and it will eventually turn into “Brand Preference” or “Customer Loyalty”

 

  • Example: Beauty and Hair Salons are often using such multiplying effect to increase their sales. You may originally ask for a simple treatment but you may end up spending a huge sum of money you would never thought of when you first walk into the shop!
  • Comments: Multiplying Effect may only happen if products and services are related which can be “Cross-Selling”. Otherwise, the buying desire of your customers may not be so easily influenced as you would with the same product category.

3. Packaging – there are 2 ways of Packaging your products and services that you can consider. First, you can put different but related products to produce a Package for sale and sell for a higher value though it is still discounted. The advantage of this is that you are actually helping customers to mix and match ideas that they may not think of at the time of buying without the packages. Automatically, you are creating a Multiplying Effect. Second, you can Package the same raw materials to produce multiple combinations of products. The advantage of this is that you can ensure your raw materials will not be constraint by certain products when demands are not reaching their goals. In both cases, you can increase sales of the slow moving items as well as expand your overall sales per purchase.

  • Example: Set lunches or set dinners are classic examples for Packaging in sales and marketing terms. Diners maybe given a couple of choices for appetizer and main entrée but they do not need to choose a la carte. The restaurant is actually selling more food at a lower price but sales amount is higher than just selling the main entrée!
  • Example: A very popular dessert shop, there must be over 30 different kinds of drinks and sweet soaps they are selling. When I look carefully on their menu, no matter hot or cold, more than half of their offerings are merely different combinations of the same ingredients. This is a great example on how to Package your offerings!
  • Comments: You have to be very creative when you come to do Packaging. You will be surprised by how much your customers may enjoy by your Packages! You just need to follow your own desire in imaging how would you like to see the Packages if you are a customer.

4. Consumables & Repurchase – Repeatable business is a key success model to many businesses. If you can make your products or services to become re-purchasable or with recurrence payments, this will bring you not only growth but compounded growth. The classic example is ink or toner for printers. The selling price for printers are decreasingly lower than the early days but ink and toners are still significantly expansive when compared with the price drop of printers. Other examples can be paper towel mops, staples & staplers, paid channels on Broadband TV services.

  • Comments: Not every product and service may use this kind of synergizing technique. However, my recommendation is to be open to your business. Sometime, you just need to take a simple action in order to create your repeatable business.

Summary
Synergizing your products and services are very important if you want to grow your sales with highest Return On Investment (ROI). If you can master these techniques even you are a new comer to the market, you can still create a very competitive position for yourself! So, Get Synergized!

Effective target marketing skills for SMEs

By Matthew Kwan
Principal Consultant, Adams Company Limited
© Copyright. March 29, 2007

No matter companies big or small, marketing is always not cheap. Not only money you have to spend, but also resources to execute. Moreover, it is extremely hard to measure your success and return-on-investments (ROI). Therefore, it is very important for SMEs to have very clear ideas in mind what they need to do with marketing in order to remain competitive and yet maximizing their return with limited money and resources.

Here, I am summarizing the most important areas that SMEs should consider when they plan and do any marketing in an effective and target way:

Alliances – run marketing activities with your partners and maximize costs & resources
Benefits – always highlight your product/service’s benefits and values
Concentrate – focus 80% effort on the most strategic 20% of products/services
Dynamics – leverage your products/services strength to gain the maximum return
Environment – ready to adapt changes of business environment and ecosystem

Alliances
It is so easy for anyone to think and act in silo. However, with SMEs money and resources are limited, we really need to look out and find partners that are complementary to our business and do co-marketing activities with them. Not only it is a cost-effective thing to do but also it creates synergy and excitement to our customers as they may get better and more complete solutions to fulfill their needs. With combined forces,

  • We have much stronger bargaining power with the advertising agencies & channels
  • We present a much more prominent presence and image to our customers
  • We may broaden our reach to potential customers that are previously covered only by our partners

If you do not know where to start, just try to work with some professional organizations, chambers of commerce and some other associations that your potential customers may belong to.

Benefits
Too often we market our products/services with functions and features without really telling our potential customers the benefits and values of our products/services. Customer buying behavior typically is based on how fulfilling is the product/service to their immediate needs. Any good product/service need to address the needs of the customers by their values and not the functions or features. Customers are generally willing to even pay more if they get the perceived values and benefits they want. One simple way to check your marketing message to see whether it is addressing the benefits and values is to ask if the customer would miss anything for not buying your products/services. Some examples of the answers should be:

  • The customers are missing the opportunity to solve their problem or address their needs
  • The customers are missing the chance to save money or to earn time
  • The customers are missing the wave to catch up with the season or the trend

It is not easy at first when you try to write your marketing message and addressing your customers’ needs but it is absolutely essential if you want to differentiate your products/services with so many competitors out there!

Concentrate
Many of us have learned about the 80-20 rule but always do not know how to apply in real lives. I have seen many cases with SME’s they are trying so hard to get every possible income for the company but losing their focus to get maximum return from their core competency. Let me be a little bit more elaborate on this, we should really focus 80% of our effort/ money/ resources on top 20% of our products or services that are helping us to gain 80% return of our income. Obviously, it is just an indication but not an absolute rule, some may use 65% effort to gain 80% return…. etc. However, when we find ourselves using 50% effort in dealing with or promoting the bottom 20% of products/services, there must be something wrong with our time and resources management. It is a very loud alarm that we should be alert! So some basic questions to ask are:

  • What are our top 20% strategic products/services that are generating 80% revenue? How much time, money, man power are we spending in promoting this 20%?
  • What are the bottom 20% products/services we can put aside and not market now?

If we can master this 80-20 rule well in our business both sales and marketing, I am sure we can progress our business at a faster rate than we can imagine!

Dynamics
When we market our products and services, we should really try to leverage the strengths of all different products and services, so that our customers can relate them easily without thinking. It is very expansive to build individual brands for different products and it is an art to manage brands well. My recommendation to SMEs is to avoid as much as possible of introducing new brands unless absolutely required. However, the whole process should start when product/service managers and research & development managers decide which products/services to be launched to the market. Hence, when we launch new products and services, we should ask ourselves that:

  • Whether the new products/services are complementing the existing products/services? Can we do bundled sales?
  • Can we use an overall umbrella brand to cover both existing and new products/services?
  • Do the new products/services differentiate themselves well enough that customers will not be confused?

I can guaranteed you that creating dynamics for your products/services is very exciting especially when you see they are really helping each other to sell and grow.

Environment
Business world changes every second, we have to be ready and adapt changes as soon as required. We cannot blindly repeat what we have been doing in the past. We should be willing to change according to the environmental changes. The ecosystem of the environment changes so fast, our customers, competitors, channels, complementors may not be there forever. We have to keep our eyes open and keep reviewing our marketing strategy by challenging ourselves to see if our marketing strategy really fitting to the real world! Here are some of the principles:

  • We should stop using the same advertisement or we should make changes to the advertisement if there is no response from customers for a period of time
  • We should use different marketing channels to test out the best responses and cost-effectiveness
  • We should pay extra attention if there are seasonal effect to customer buying behavior…e.g. beginning and end of fiscal year, major holiday seasons…etc

The business environment is so volatile, no one can completely grasp the real situation but if we are diligent enough to notice, monitor and apply changes accordingly, we can make crisis to opportunities!

In summary, we must be ready to adapt changes in our business environment and willing to work with other alliances to create the maximum effect in marketing of highlighting the benefit/values of our most strategic products/services with most of our effort by leveraging the strengths of different products and services. It is a very exciting and interesting game we are in!

Maximizing dollars on Web marketing – SME primer

By Matthew Kwan © Copyright. All rights reserved.
Principal Consultant, Adams Company Limited

January 26, 2007

With the advance of Internet and broadband connection, shopping behavior of most people nowadays has changed dramatically over the last decade. Suddenly, your company’s Web presence has become the gauging factor to the success of your company, SME is no exception!

So how can you maximize your dollars on Web marketing to get the best return on investment? Is there any ways that you can ensure the money is right spent? I am going to share here an “IDEAL” model that you may consider to follow:

  • I – Identify Your Customers
  • D – Decide Your Budget
  • E – Experiment Your Options
  • A – Assess Your Results
  • L – Leverage Others

1. Identify Your Customers
Any marketing books will tell you this same thing – first and foremost, you need to know who your customers are. That may seem obvious but sometimes we are just missing the target without really thinking through the process. It is not so much who exactly your customers are but what are their shopping behaviors and desires on prices, trends, attributes of products/services, other complementary products/services that will help your sales…etc You really have to spend time to analyze your customers, even getting market data to support your analysis. Without these data, I can guaranteed you that you will waste money on your marketing effort!

2. Decide Your Budget
Your marketing budget should not be fixed and it should be as dynamic as possible. Deciding your budget should be a process with reference to the return of sales enquiries through the use of the budget. For new start up companies I suggest to go a little bit more aggressive for the initial period until you are comfortable with the good sales pipeline. By aggressive, I do not mean to spend a lot but allow good amount of money for you to use with caution. The right amount should be relative to your company cash flow, you just should not spend more than you can afford. My hint to this is to include your marketing budget of your initial period to be part of your initial capital investment and the subsequent budgets to be part of your sales expense. In this way, you do not have to worry too much of you initial marketing budget becoming a burden to your expense in your overall cash flow planning.

3. Experiment Your Options
There are just too many options for Web marketing. You need to list them down and give them some priority and assign budget according to their priorities. However, with SME’s, I suggest to spend your dollars on proactive searching rather than mass advertising as it is too expensive to do. So here are some of the proactive searching options for your reference:

  • Search Engines: Yahoo and Google is the most widely used search engine these days in Hong Kong. Actually, you do not have to pay a lot in order to get started. For example, you just need to deposit HK$240 to Yahoo and start your keyword search sponsor link instantly. However, deciding which keywords to be used does required some good thought. My personal experience tells me that you are better off by including your city and product/service category in a phrase to avoid paying unnecessary amount of money to compete with the big company with tons of marketing budget. In such a way, the charge will be a lot cheaper than a standalone keyword. E.g. “cheap business service in Hong Kong” This actually makes a lot of sense as more and more people are searching by phrase rather than simply a keyword. Do remember that the keyword list must be revised constantly to get the best results.
  • Web Directories: most portal sites would have business directory sections that you can post your company information on them. A lot of these sites are still free of charge and welcome your postings. E.g. Yahoo, Timway, Trade Development Council, SMEcare.com…etc. However, it may take longer time to get your company information posted depending on each portal’s schedule.
  • Auction Sites: Yahoo, eBay, Red-dots, Go2HK are some of the popular auction sites in Hong Kong. Some SME companies are actually operating entirely using these sites to generate their sales. You may just need to pay very little per transaction to start selling.
  • Blogs/Discussion Groups: Blogs are getting very popular and if you can identify your customer interests, you should try to become members of their Blogs and Discussion Groups communities. After joining, you can post messages and point people to your websites for product/service information and etc. Most of these communities are free to join. On the other hand, setting up a blog of your own is very easy and it takes no time. By doing so, you are setting up a community of your own. The only matter is to maintain the content and keep it alive. It is very labor intensive to keep it living if you are not good at sharing thoughts!
  • YouTube: YouTube is a video broadcasting website and it has become so popular that you should consider using it as part of your web marketing strategy. There are actually SME companies using it as a mean of product introduction, training and even customer service due to its popularity and free of charge nature.

4. Assess Your Results
As mentioned above, you should spend your marketing budget wisely by assessing the results regularly. Most Search Engines will have tools to help you to generate reports for your analysis. However, these reports are only meaningful if you are tracking in parallel how your sales and enquires are being done through which web channel. It takes good discipline in doing so! To start with, I suggest to do daily and weekly review to ensure money is wisely spent.

5. Leverage Others
No matter your business is selling products or providing services, you will always have companies which may complement your products/services. My recommendation is that you should try your best in getting these companies to list and link your company website in their website as partner or show in related links. You should also do the same thing for them vice versa. In this way, you are building a network of alliances and I find it a very effective way to build both awareness and credibility.

Summary

Web marketing is an art and it takes time and effort to perfect. In this Internet age, we just do not have an option of opting out of Web marketing. However, if you are willing to try, practice will make perfect and you will certainly find reward f