growth and development Archives - Syneka Marketing

Launch of the 2015 Small Business Festival

By Advice for Businesses No Comments

The Victorian Small Business Festival is a major fixture in the State Government’s business event series.  The Festival, which is held throughout August, features a range of workshops and sessions aimed at fostering business growth.

This afternoon I was invited to the launch, through my role in the Australian Marketing Institute, providing an opportunity meet the participants in the festival, and to gain a broader insight into the program.

Business failure remains an ongoing concern within Australia and Business Victoria has a role in building the capacity of business to stimulate growth and development. Details on the Small Business Festival are available at www.business.vic.gov.au

Governance Mentors

Governance Mentors – Inaugural Training

By Advice, Advice for Not-for-profit Organisations and Charities One Comment

Governance Mentors is a new initiative developed by Volunteering Western Victoria. The program aims to strengthen the capacity of the not-for-profit sector, by pairing mentors with community organisations.

The program has been developed over the past two years, with a steering group developing a model that incorporates measurement and evaluation. Governance Mentors reached an important milestone, with the first training session being conducted.

We prepared the marketing plan for Governance Mentors, identifying opportunities for growth and development. To support the plan, I participated in the training session, with the aim of becoming a mentor within the program.

Governance Mentors is a program that has been developed to help boards and committees achieve their aims

Governance Mentors has been developed to help boards and committees achieve their aims

The training session guided participants through the practice of mentoring, with a focus on providing advice, and reinforcing good governance principles. A mentor aims to provide advice and assist organisations in working towards achieving their aims.

Unlike other programs, Governance Mentors involves working with boards or the committee as a whole, rather than specific individuals. This approach reinforces good governance by demonstrating the role of the board or committee as the decision making authority. In this regard, mentors are available to provide advice, rather than being nominated board or committee members of an organisation.

The program is being progressively rolled out and demonstrates the ongoing growth of an initiative that is underpinned by a marketing plan.

Do you Start with the ‘Why’?

By Advice for Businesses One Comment

A profitable business provides motivation for ongoing growth and development. A business does this by finding a need in the market and aiming to fulfil these needs through its products and services.

For example, Johnson & Johnson exists to advance healthcare to people of all ages, and in the case which I am familiar with, NIKE exists to help athletes improve their performance in their sporting pursuits.

This is the point of origin in which the company started, because:

  • They are convinced of a better solution to what was available then
  • They sense an unfulfilled needs that can benefit the target market

There is a difference in NIKE selling shoes because it has the best designed shoes in the market place or NIKE selling shoes because it can help an athlete achieve a personal best. The former relates to NIKE seeing a market opportunity for it to compete in whilst the latter is more about NIKE driving its beliefs and passion about helping athletes succeed.

If NIKE were in it to make money, then it could well sell dress shoes in addition to the sneakers range. In fact, it is what they did when the Swoosh logo became cool. In the 90s, mass consumers started to wear NIKE because it was cool and fashionable. NIKE decided to launch a range of `fashionable’ NIKE labelled products, including jeans and other apparel range to appeal to the fashion conscious. The brand became undone very quickly. Its core market segment, the sportsmen and women who value the performance-driven focus on the products, began distancing themselves from the brand. There is no performance focus on NIKE’s product design anymore; the emphasis seems to be on the design and colour.

As a result, NIKE lost it market share leadership to Reebok. Luckily it didn’t take long for NIKE to realize and the product strategy reverted to its performance-driven design roots, where it was able to recapture its dominant position.

The product still appeals to the fashion conscious, but from NIKE’s perspective, it is an added benefit to the appeal of the brand. Its core product design focus continues to deliver products that drive performance and function, and that basically contributes to its continuing success today.

Have a think about this. If you have started out your business on the order of `What’ is your business, `How’ are you delivering it and `Why’ is it good for your customer, do the following instead:
Question `Why’ you are in your business in the first place, `How’ are you taking it to market and `What’ can you offer to your customers. It can radically shift your thinking on your business model and how you can deliver it.

I treasure one of the hand-outs given to me when I was at NIKE, which I still refer to occasionally. It was a copy of the original document titled NIKE Principles. It outlined NIKE values and was handed out to its employees in the 70s when NIKE was a fledgling corporation. Type-written Principle #10 reads, “If we do the right things we’ll make money damn near automatic”.

Not exactly politically correct corporate language but it is a crystal clear message that resonates true even today. I interpret `do the right things’ as incorporating passion into an area of expertise that you have and believing that it benefits your target market. It sums up the “Why” in which you are in your chosen field of business in the first place. In NIKE’s case, it is to help athletes improve on their performance.

Question your “why” if it is something that you have not put much thought into before. It can help provide clear thinking to the existence of your business, know if you are in it for the right reason and potentially help you refine your business model for success.