A Relaunch with a New Format...
I put this sucker on ice a while back because I wasn’t sure exactly what to do with it and I was doing some market research of my own to help me figure out what I wanted to do as well.
Eventually, I came around to leaning in on a focus around strategy since most of the conversations I was having were in that area anyway. And, a format of 3/2/1 because I see that this is a pretty good format for sharing something fast to read and useful for y’all.
First, let me define how I’m going to look at strategy as a jumping-off point.
Most of my work falls into the bucket of strategy with a special focus on brand and marketing.
To me, the way to think about strategy going forward revolves around three things:
Why will some businesses and organizations succeed while others will fail?
How to create and capture opportunities.
How to help lessen the need for blind luck from your strategy because luck is always involved, but relying totally on luck is a loser’s bet.
Second, the 3/2/1 format will go like this.
3 Ideas with links and definitions.
2 Action items.
Each week, a little intro at the top. Maybe a little commentary. Then we will rock with the bulk of the note.
At the bottom, I’ll share any relevant links or stuff.
To the good stuff!
Speaking of: I’ll be in the UK from 13-20 March in London and Birmingham. I’ll probably try to do a happy hour or drinks at some point. Keep an eye here.
Distribution will change for many luxury brands after the pandemic: Maybe I’m in the minority here, but I love shopping at the airport. Heathrow, love it. I actually started planning my trip back from Europe in a few weeks to layover in Dublin to go to the Guinness store in Dublin and have some real Irish Guinness because I haven’t gone anywhere in so long. The big idea here is that the cost structure for luxury brands likely isn’t economically viable going forward especially as the mix of travelers will likely change.
The pandemic has made life catch up with Generation X?: Hell yeah! Gen X rocks! The truth here is that people have been changed by the pandemic. Many people have rethought their entire lives. What they want or where they want to live. I think that is a good thing. In America, we see a lot more thoughtfulness in people about the grinding wheels of late-stage capitalism and hot dehumanizing it can be. Enough thoughtfulness? Probably not. But something is better than nothing.
Ritson’s ethnography of pricing: The challenge I have with the article is that Mark seems to take the stance that all inflation is equal, but Jake’s question is built on an analysis that showed many US companies were already making record profits before inflation became a top of mind story. When the analysis of US inflation was run, it was shown that around 60% of the inflation in the States was being driven by profits and not price increases to meet inflation. I’m all for people raising prices to generate the right ROI, but I’m also well aware of the excesses of US industry at this point.
This is an activity I’ve been working on with a board I’m part of that wants to rethink its strategy as we bring in a new leader. It reflects upon the need to have an ambition for your organization: In honor of the second story, spend some time thinking about how the pandemic has changed your thinking about what you want from your life or business. Jot down some ideas for the ambition or lack of ambition you want to show going forward.
Take a few moments to map out your principles or philosophy of strategy or marketing. I’m a fan of how thoughtful Tom Roach is on the topic to the point that I wrote up two primers so far on strategy and branding.
“Strategy Requires Making Explicit Choices To Do Somethings and Not Others”—Roger L. Martin: Roger Martin has had an outsized impact on my thinking about strategy. So it makes sense to share a quote from him this week.
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