As Finance Director its very critical for you to understand developing brand strategy is extremely critical. The most important asset your company has is its brand. Quite simply, it drives the direction of your business. So you should definitely have a well thought out brand strategy in place.
Increasing competition in business develops similar products with good quality from different manufacturers. But only an effective, innovative and marketing strategy & planning can make your business and products more popular. For your profession as Finance Director it becomes your responsibility to stay connected with like-minded supporting industry experts who can guide and help you deal with your day to day work issues.
Strategic Planning Have You Ever Seen A Purple McDonald's Logo?
If you are entrepreneurial in nature owning a business is very exciting adventure. It can also be the most difficult thing for you to get into if you are not prepared.
In simple words, a marketing strategy is the HOW and WHY of a marketing plan. Marketing strategies need to be based on good plans, without which you will lose direction and focus. Here are a few tips for creating market strategies.
Start with Vision and Mission
Vision asks the question: "What do you want to become?" As the leaders and thinkers in the organization, foresight is very important as it defines any action that should be taken from that point on. Mission asks the questions, "Why do you exist?" as well as "What steps are you willing to take to achieve your goal?" This takes into consideration the present situation, as it reflects strengths and weaknesses that help you make a solid evaluation of where you are at the moment.
Be aware of trends in the market, as well as other outside factors that might affect it. Taking a global perspective into consideration allows you to think creatively and beyond the sphere of what you are comfortable with. Being a keen observer prepares you for any changes in the market.
Make an assessment of competitors and threats, keeping your friends close, but your enemies closer. Nothing is more thrilling than knowing how to adapt to competitors who are willing to fight tooth and nail for your precious market share. Know what you are up against so you'll never be a step behind.
Lastly, after gathering all the data, plan your marketing strategy and learn how to think outside the box. Successful strategies have been borne out of creative minds that were willing to make a difference when everybody else was doing the same thing. Although some cut-and-dried strategies have worked, it takes an ingenious one to put you at the top. Don't be afraid to be different.
Branding Strategies - When a Bargain-Brand Attacks a Premium-Brand
With the support of our professional business network, you get the opportunity to exchange experience and knowledge at a top professional level, and to strengthen and develop your own skills within your management and specialist areas.
Through business relationships and experience sharing in confidential settings for Finance Director, we strive to create personal and business value for all our network peers.
Supply Chain Management (SCM) as defined by Tom McGuffog is "Maximising added value and reducing total cost across the entire trading process through focusing on speed and certainty of response to the market." Due to globalization and ICT, SCM has become a tool for companies to compete effectively either at a local level or at a global scale. SCM has become a necessity especially for manufacturing industry when it comes to deliver products at a competitive cost and at a higher quality than their competitors. Here are some of the reason SCM has become important to today's manufacturing industry:-
Competitive Edge through Core Competencies
Today's business climate has rapidly changed and has become more competitive as ever in nature. Businesses now not only need to operate at a lower cost to compete, it must also develop its own core competencies to distinguish itself from competitors and stand out in the market. In creating the competitive edge, companies need to divert its resources to focus on what they do best and outsource the process and task that is not important to the overall objective of the company. SCM has allowed company to rethink their entire operation and restructure it so that they can focus on its core competencies and outsource processes that are not within the core competencies of the company. Due to the current competitive market, it is the only way for a company to survive. The strategy on applying SCM will not only impact their market positioning but also strategic decision on choosing the right partners, resources and manpower. By focusing on core competencies also will allow the company to create niches and specialization of core areas. As stated in the Blue Ocean Strategy outlined by Chan Kim, in order to create a niche for competitive advantage, companies must look at the big picture of the whole process, and figuring out which process can be reduce, eliminate, raise and create.
As an example stated by Chan Kim, the Japanese automotive industries capitalise on its resources to build small and efficient cars. The Japanese automotive industries gain competitive edge by utilising their supply chain to maximise their core competencies and position itself in a niche market. The strategy works and now Toyota Motor Corporation, a Japanese company, is considered to be the number one auto car maker in the world beating Ford and General Motors of the United States.
SCM has allowed business nowadays to not just have productivity advantage alone but also on value advantage. As Martin Christopher in his book, Logistics and Supply Chain Management: Strategies for Reducing Cost and Improving Service' states, 'Productivity advantage gives a lower cost profile and the value advantage gives the product or offering a differential 'plus' over competitive offerings.' Through maximizing added value and also reduce the cost in the same time, more innovation can be added to the product and process. Mass manufacturing offers productivity advantage but through effective supply chain management, mass customization can be achieved. With mass customization, customers are given the value advantage through flexible manufacturing and customized adaptation. Product life cycles also can be improved through effective use of SCM. Value advantage also changes the norm of traditional offerings that is 'one-size-fits-all.' Through SCM, the more accepted offerings by the industry to the consumers would be a variety of products catered to different market segments and customers preferences.
As an example, the Toyota Production System practiced in Toyota, evaluates its supply chain and determines what is value added activities and what is not value added activities. Non added value activities are considered to be 'Muda' or waste and therefore must be eliminated. Such non added value activities are overproduction, waiting, unnecessary transport, over processing, excess inventory, unnecessary movement, defects and unused employee creativity. The steps taken to eliminate waste are through Kaizen, Kanban, Just-in-time and also push-pull production to meet actual customer's demands. The Toyota Production System revolutionise the Supply Chain Management towards becoming a leaner supply chain system that is more agile and flexible towards meeting the end users demands.
Networking has always been considered a powerful tool for improving business prospects, advancing a career, and developing ideas. Other than some brief, structured events, networking has been mostly informal and inexpensive in comparison to cost they otherwise spend on different channels. But membership is growing in many formal, long-term networking groups, and so is the price tag.
Our groups are not groups for generating sales leads, nor are they places where individuals can drop-in to gain quick advice on an immediate challenge. Members also sign a confidentiality agreement and benefits from the guided mentoring to help each other.
These groups include an experienced facilitator and use a structured discussion method to ensure appropriate participation.