A number of years ago, I was contacted by an attorney who was representing an inventor. It seemed that inventor had created a universal cap for an automotive water heater. This cap could work as a replacement for any water heater.Like most inventors, this one happened to be mentally long on technical expertise and mentally short on the realities of the marketplace. Also, like many investors he was working on a shoe-string.

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In my research, what I learned was that despite the fact that most companies are committed to the concept of differentiation, at any given moment they are also intensely aware of what their competitors are doing, and it is this competitive vigilance that ultimately pushed them down a path of conformity.” Youngme Moon, HBS Professor and author of “Different: Escaping the Competitive Herd”

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Are you ready for the new paradigms? Do you have a Kindle or iPad for reading books? Do you read your daily newspaper on-line? What kind of home entertainment system do you have connected to your High Definition TV that will allow you to see movies, previously available only at the video store or from a vending machine? What must a successful company do to survive and thrive in this environment?.

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While the marketing gurus will tell you about the importance of trademark and brand building for business-to-business products and services, if you are a small player or entrepreneur don’t fall too deeply in love with your brand. John Quelch, the prolific Harvard marketing professor, provides superb rationale for B-2-B branding.  But if you look closely,…

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Competitive Equivalence, Competitive Advantage, and the Role of Price The four-year war over the next-generation DVD format for home videos that deliver picture clarity matching newer HDTVs has come to conclusion. The final nail in the coffin took only 8 days to sink. Sony and the team backing Blu-ray have defeated Toshiba and the team…

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Price Bundling to Profit What is distinct about price bundling vs. other types bundles?  Is price bundling just another form of discounts or can it improve profits?   When should an executive investigate price bundling?  What must be known before one can conclusively state that a price bundle is good?  Valid questions, all, and they deserve…

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It’s time to play The Wiglaf Journal’s annual “Top 100 Brands” quiz. All information is generated by the annual Interbrand/Business Week report that this year appeared in the August 6, 2007 BUSINESS WEEK and the report is available on-line at www.interbrand.com/best_brands_2007.asp. 1. Which brand among the Top 10 had the greatest rise from 2006 to…

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The conventional wisdom concerning the positives of branding business-to-business products is most compelling, as articulated by Hard University Prof. John Quelch. Quelch points out, in B2B Branding: Does it Work in the November 28, 2007, issue of Working Knowledge, the Harvard Business School’s on-line weekly newsletter, that among Interbrand’s 10 most valuable brands include Microsoft,…

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Wintry Hearth Rejuvenates the Importance of Being True The CEO/MD must be the Brand Cheerleader. The Brand creates a common purpose that bonds the company’s stakeholders. Interbrand’s 10 most valuable brands include Microsoft, Intel, IBM, and GE, all generate more B2B revenues than sales to end users. Sales acts as a container, binding together relationships…

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