Roy's Blog: Marketing

December 10, 2012

The fast follower is still another copycat


Some organizations declare a “fast follower” strategy and claim that it is less risky than being a “first mover”.

The first mover is first-in the market with a new idea, original technology or revolutionary product. Risk level can be high as customer response is uncertain while investments can be material.

The fast follower HOPES to be in FAST with a me-too response to the first mover and capture some of the market success of the innovation.

Risk is believed to be lower as the market response to the first mover can be observed and market entry strategy adjusted based on what is seen.

The fast follower is a copycat. Sure, they may tweak what the first mover does, but essentially they are going to market with the SAME proposition.

The fast follower is another version of emulating best-in-class or best-of-breed. Except in this case, the strategy is to be a FAST copycat. They strive to BE SAME ASAP!

Rather than slowly inching themselves further into the competitive herd, they RUN into it!

Copying, disguised in any way, is risky as it prevents you from achieving the lofty UNIQUE position in the market.

There can be no more risky position than that.

Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead Book Series

  • Posted 12.10.12 at 10:41 am by Roy Osing
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December 6, 2012

Keep what you cherish; build what you need

Looking back to honor tradition; looking forward to compete and succeed in a high tech, fast paced world.

Dubai, UAE, is a remarkable place.

On the one hand, it offers a distinctive traditional culture: full body cover wardrobe for Arab women, conservative dress for tourists, no swearing, no public display of affection and Souks, where active barter is expected when buying anything.

On the other hand, Dubai is an ultra modern city sparing no expense to have infrastructure, architecture and services that are second to none in the world.

A city created out of a desert.

An opportunity to both create what you need for the future, and retain what you value from the past.


Dubai is truly DIFFERENT; it wants to surprise people, Dazzle them, shock them with such character as:
—Modern infrastructure in every fabric of the city from the highway system to environmental balance.
—Bus stops with air conditioning.
Free WiFi in every bus stop.
—Shopping malls (Dubai Mall and Emirates Mall) offering everything imaginable.
A ski hill in The Emirates Mall with rentals for both skiers and boarders.
—A shopping bonanza in the Gold Souks where you can get unsurpassed bargains on the gold price if the day.
Humanity. People here are quiet, respectful and wanting to provide a great experience for the visitor.

Ali was our taxi escort for the day.

Like Nasr in Jordan, he wanted nothing more than to make us happy and have us return. Ali truly understood that “creating memories” resulted in more visitors and better business.

Keep The Old. Create The New.

Keep what you cherish. Build what you need to be successful.

And in both scenarios, NEVER forsake your humanity.

Dubai has done it well…


Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead Book Series

  • Posted 12.6.12 at 10:02 am by Roy Osing
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November 28, 2012

“My job is to create memories”

Aqaba, Jordan.

Nasr, our Tour Guide, who took us through breathtaking Petrahad it right. And it was so natural for him to say it. And to do it. He was able to turn a tour of Petra, one of the 7 Wonders of the World (given the honor in 2007) into an experience my wife and I will never forget. And one that we will likely talk about for many years to come.

His concluding comments to us came from his heart: “My job as a guide is to create memories”.

He went on to ask :“Please tell your friends about my country”.

And that’s what I’m doing.


Can you imaging if every one of YOUR “customer contact employees” saw THEIR job to create memories for your customers? Do you think it would lift your business to new levels? Do you think it would deepen customer loyalty to you?

In Nasr’s case, he personally understood that unless he was successful creating memories, people wouldn’t visit his country. And he desperately wants people to see the country he loves so much (it was refreshing to hear him speak of Jordan in emotional loving terms).

The problem is that employees in our businesses don’t have the same compelling driver or sense of urgency to create memories for customers. They don’t understand it’s critical strategic importance to organizational success and survival.

And it’s not their fault.

It’s a failure of leadership.

You get what you ask for. You get what you pay for.

Ask for Memories to be created by your people. Make it a critical element of their Performance Plan. Pay them for it.

Hire people who innately know how to do it, because not everyone can. And don’t rely on training to teach people to do it. Memory creators are more often than not, born with the gift.

We need a Nasr to lead our organizations out of the common, boring, invisible, unremarkable, unimaginative, stale herd.

We need many of them.

PS. If you have a chance to visit Jordan, do it. It’s safe and full of charming people.

There Nasr, it worked…


Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead Book Series

  • Posted 11.28.12 at 09:14 am by Roy Osing
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October 29, 2012

That’s why there’s chocolate and vanilla

Can you imagine if an ice cream shop only offered vanilla flavor? Or just chocolate? Vanilla and chocolate lovers might be satisfied for a while but the business would likely not succeed.

Different consumer tastes require different flavors. It’s what every business must do.

Do you know the tastes of the people who do business with you? The people who care about what you do and buy from you regularly? Your fans expect you to create Value that is SPECIAL to THEM.

Can you provide too many flavors? I think so. To me it suggests shotgun thinking. Provide 50 flavors and you’re bound to appeal to some, but it’s a waste of resources due to the misses. In addition, I find too much choice frustrating and annoying.


Give me 3 flavors in my ‘relevance circle’ (the main flavors I select more than others) and I am happy to pick one that fits my mood at that moment.

A sprawling product line is expensive. We all know the result of excess inventory. Discount clearance pricing and bang! you’re a commodity supplier.

Too few flavors on the other hand limits business; additional sales are missed by not having a robust enough product line.

But a THOUGHTFUL selection of flavors based on fan purchase behavior grows business and customer loyalty.

THOUGHTFUL selection?

1. Select flavors that are coveted by your ten most valuable customers that provide you with a disproportionate amount of your revenue.

2. If you can’t name your top ten, look at product sales. Pick the ten best selling flavors over a 12-month period. Focus on them.

3. Conduct FEELINGS research around your top ten fans or flavors. Why do people like the flavors? What FEELINGS do they create when they consume them?

4. What other flavors, that you currently don’t offer, would interest them and why?

Know your fans. Know what makes them feel special.

Treat each of them differently.


Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead Book Series

  • Posted 10.29.12 at 10:08 am by Roy Osing
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