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Speed to Market: De-clutter the retail space

By , agencyfaqs!, New Delhi | In Marketing | August 27, 2007
Lloyd Mathias, director, marketing, Motorola, is in an industry where products are launched regularly and innovations are absolutely necessary for success. So, it was perfect that Mathias was there to start up the day at the Speed to Market seminar

Lloyd & #BANNER1 & # Mathias, director, marketing, Motorola, is in an industry where products are launched regularly and innovations are absolutely necessary for success. So, it was perfect that Mathias was there to start up the day at the Speed to Market seminar organised by agencyfaqs! in association with 'Dainik Jagran' and Hughes.

Lloyd talked about the importance of informing the consumer and not confusing him. "We often launch so many products in such a short span of time that we become our own competitors. Although speed to market is important, it is also essential, especially in our industry, that two products launched simultaneously are in different price brackets, targeted at different sets of people," he said.

Lloyd Mathias
Lloyd talked about how the consumer preferences have changed over the last three years. "No longer do first-time buyers look for low-end options; 85 per cent of first-time buyers buy colour phones, 40 per cent buy colour and FM phones, and 25 per cent buy colour with FM and camera," he said.

Lloyd added that the primary challenge was not just to rush new handsets to the market, but to look at the needs of consumers and address them.

Technology is changing faster than before, he said. Every day, you see a new mobile with new features. In such a market, it's difficult to build a brand that lasts years. The life of a mobile handset is getting shorter all the time.

One of the biggest challenges that Motorola and other phone companies are facing is that consumers are evolving much faster than the market. "It becomes really difficult to keep the product alive. When we launch a new handset spiced up with a camera, blue tooth, GPRS, what it means is that we are killing the old ones we have in the market that doesn't have any one or all these features," he said.

The solution to the problem is not devaluing the old handset when you launch a new one. "That's why you don't launch two handsets in a short time within the same class. I can't go ahead and launch a radio phone in the market worth Rs 3,000 in June and a handset with radio and MP3 worth Rs 4,000 in July," he concluded.

With so many models from each company in the market, the retail shelves get clogged. The situation is complicated by the small size of outlets.

Managing retail and distribution is critical to avoid the clogging of the supply chain. Retailer training and tracking the retail offtake more efficiently on a model-wise basis will become increasingly important, Mathias said.