Monday, August 20, 2012

Think the Unthinkable

What the people in business think they know about customer and market is more likely to be wrong than right. There is only one person who really knows: the customer. In his book "Managing for results" Peter F Drucker has pinpoint very justifiable who is the king of market. Brand managers and owner think themselves the leader of market. They let them think that they decide the fate of market and they can carry their leadership in one segment to another segment easily with there brand name. Many have jump into this rat race.
When Xerox saw a big opportunity in PC market they planned to jump into this market with the brand name 'Xerox'. They let themselves in thinking that both are of same kind of product. Customer will buy in their thinking and they will buy Xerox name in PC. But to their surprise and million of dollar write off, they realized that customer take PC a very apart product from the photocopier business. To them, Xerox represent photocopier. Xerox means photocopier.
Business people think that they know their customer genes. But customer's genes are not hard and fast stable jeans like human genes. They keep changing. 'Our engineers had to suspend the law of nature to make this or that possible. "But customer has a very unique and different way of mind set. They can , very much possible, think that if it so much difficult, there may be a big chances that it will not work at all. End result would falter of the product. Peter Drucker states, "No one company and brand is important to market". Market defines rules for the game. A lot of play the game and efficient player in all the department become the leader. But she is the leader not the market itself. If an organization goes down it can at most affect it employees, owners, shareholders and the government. But not at all the customer. Customer has a vast option to decide on. He will switch his vendor, Simple and straight as bamboo.
But brand owner has a very unique way of market view. They see themselves not as leader of market but the leader of customers. They themselves decide that customer will buy anything that they produce given the following in one segment of market. While deciding on these strategies, they ignore the huge amount of data and facts available to them and fancy themselves with speculations.
Billions of dollars has gone under drain only due to defocusing and fancy mind of mindless CEOs of big boys of corporate world. And to my best of knowledge, these so called intelligent guys are not learning fast enough.