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(For more information please read the file provided)Respond to your choice of one of the 3 questions. Support your answer using at least three specific examples. At least one example
must come from the case studies we have presented in class (the case study are also provided). 2 page with business memo format.
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Marketing Brief #3
Respond to your choice of one of the following questions. Give your answer as fully as possible.
Support your answer using at least three specific examples, as required by each question. Your specific
examples will come from our class lectures, assigned reading and case studies. At least one example
must come from the case studies we have presented in class.
Guidelines: Word-process your response using the business memo format. Use two pages to answer
your question. On the first page include full name; BUS 325, Marketing Principles, and the question you
have chosen. Format: Single spacing within paragraphs; double spacing between paragraphs; 1”
margins; 11 or 12–point Times, Palatino, Tahoma or Arial font. Cite references as needed at the end of
your memo. Submit to Blackboard.
Question #1: How does the marketing concept help an
organization to operate with greater efficiency? In your
response, begin by defining the marketing concept. Discuss
the significance of the value chain, value delivery network,
market research, market segmentation, targeting,
positioning and branding.
Support your answer using at least three specific examples.
Your specific examples will come from our class lectures,
assigned reading and case studies. At least one example
must come from the case studies we have presented in class.
©2019 Jeffrey E. Newcomb / Red Widget Strategies
Marketing Brief #3
OR
Question #2: Why is post-purchase behavior important to
marketers? Begin by describing the typical sequence of the
consumer’s buyer decision process. Define post-purchase behavior.
How does post-purchase behavior impact the consumer’s next
purchase? Discuss the role of cognitive dissonance in a consumer’s
post-purchase behavior.
What steps can marketers take to manage cognitive dissonance
among consumers? How, explicitly, can uses of social media help
marketers manage cognitive dissonance? Support your answer
using at least three specific examples. Your specific examples will
come from our class lectures, assigned reading and case studies. At
least one example must come from the case studies we have
presented in class.
©2019 Jeffrey E. Newcomb / Red Widget Strategies
Marketing Brief #3
OR
Question #3: What are the typical market situations, your
objectives, and expected outcomes when using: 1) a marketpenetration pricing strategy? 2) … a freemium pricing strategy?
3) …a market skimming pricing strategy? Begin by defining each
pricing strategy. Provide one example application for each of these
three pricing strategies; at least one of your three examples must
come from our case study work. Be specific.
Then: Discuss and justify in detail the most appropriate strategy,
penetration, freemium or market skimming, for the following: a) a
neighborhood arts education program, partially supported by public
funds; b) a skin patch, containing breakthrough drugs to help
chronically obese individuals to reduce consumption of calories; c) a
soon-to-be-released next-generation virtual reality (VR) headset; d) a
portable inkjet cartridge printer, designed for use with tablet
computing; e) chocolate chip cookies.
©2019 Jeffrey E. Newcomb / Red Widget Strategies
184
|
parT 2 Understanding the Marketplace and Customer Value
Company Case GoldieBlox: Swimming Upstream against Consumer Perceptions
When Debbie Sterling was in high school, her math teacher recognized her quantitative talent and suggested she pursue engineering as a college major. At the time, Sterling couldn’t figure
out why her teacher thought she should drive trains for a living.
But the suggestion was enough to get her started down the right
path. After four years at Stanford, Sterling graduated with a degree in mechanical engineering. But throughout the course of
her studies, Sterling noticed the lack of women in her engineering program—a characteristic phenomenon in a field where men
outnumber women 86 percent to 14 percent. This observation
ignited an obsession in Sterling. She set out on a mission to inspire a future generation of female engineers by disrupting the
pink aisle in toy stores.
During the past few years, among other accolades, Sterling
has been named Time’s “Person of the Moment” and one of
Business Insider’s “30 Women Who Are Changing the World.”
Why? Because Sterling is the founder and CEO of GoldieBlox, a
toy company that is making Sterling’s mission a reality.
A Different Kind of Toy Company
After graduating, Sterling started researching everything from
childhood development to gender roles. She discovered that in
order to gain interest in and pursue a given field, a person must
be exposed to the right inputs at an early age. This fact became
particularly bothersome as Sterling became more and more familiar with the contents of the average toy aisle in stores. Toys for
girls were in the pink aisle, dominated by dolls, stuffed animals,
and princesses, whereas toys for boys were found in the blue
aisle, filled with macho action figures, various toy weapons, and
a huge variety of building block sets. Most experts agree that the
toys served up to young girls do little to encourage an interest
in STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering, and math).
This knowledge led Sterling to develop a plan to create a different
kind of toy for girls.
As she began developing ideas for toys, another research
finding struck her—girls possess stellar verbal skills and tend
to learn better by interacting with stories. That insight was instrumental in the creation of the GoldieBlox line of construction
sets. Part erector set and part storybook, the combination was
designed to engage girls through their verbal skills and encourage them to build through narratives that feature the adventures
of Goldie, a freckled-faced blonde girl donning overalls and a tool
belt. Although Goldie comes off as a bit of a tomboy, she’s still
girlish. Skinny, blonde, and cute, she favors pinks and purples.
The toys and stories feature animals and ribbons, and characters
are more likely to help others than to succeed on their own.
After her innovative toy sets received little interest at the
American International Toy Fair in New York City, Sterling started
her own company. That decision sparked more interest than she
could have ever imagined. To raise the $150,000 needed for the
first round of production, Sterling launched a Kickstarter crowdsourced funding campaign. Her funding goal was reached in just
four days, and the funding topped out at $285,000.
With little to spend on traditional advertising, Sterling first
promoted her inventive toys with some YouTube ads, including
“Princess Machine,” featuring young girls who take their stereotypically girly toys and create a sophisticated Rube Goldberg
device. That video went viral to the tune of 8 million views in
little more than a week. Shortly thereafter, GoldieBlox’s first two
products became Amazon’s top two selling toys during the
industry’s busiest month of December. And if all that wasn’t
enough, GoldieBlox beat out 15,000 contenders in Intuit’s “Small
Business Big Game” Super Bowl ad contest, winning a $4 million
spot during the big game.
Today, only a few years after the launch of its first product,
GoldieBlox’s toys are sold at Target, Toys”R”Us, Amazon, and
6,000 other retailers worldwide. The brand features dozens of
play sets designed for girls ages 3 through 11, the Bloxtown
interactive website and app, a collection of original music videos,
a Goldie action figure, and a “More Than Just a Princess” line
of T-shirts and hoodies. GoldieBlox has won numerous industry
awards, and its toys have succeeded in raising awareness about
the lack of women in technical and scientific fields as well as the
issues associated with the traditional pink aisle.
All That Glitters Is Not Goldie
With all this success, you would think that GoldieBlox would be heralded by anyone and everyone wanting to change gender-based
stereotypes in toys. But GoldieBlox has sparked substantial debate
over whether it is really helping the cause it claims to be serving.
The opposition, led by many feminist voices, claims that GoldieBox’s approach is little more than window dressing. The debate
got really ugly after the launch of GoldieBlox and the Parade Float,
a construction set based on a new challenge faced by Goldie and
her friends—to create a float to transport the winner of a beauty
pageant. “You cannot create a toy meant to break down stereotypes when you start off with the ideal that ‘we know all girls love
princesses,’” argues author Melissa Atkins Wardy. Those in the opposition camp call for toys that are gender-neutral. “When we use
princess culture, pinkification, and beauty norms to sell STEM toys
to girls and fool ourselves that we are amazing and progressive and
raising an incredible generation of female engineers, we continue
to sell our girls short,” says Wardy. Additionally, although the toys
are designed to stir interest in girls by having them build and create,
critics have raised concerns that GoldieBlox toys are too simplistic.
But Sterling is quick to respond to all such arguments and
show that GoldieBlox isn’t just trying to hook parents with a gimmick that doesn’t deliver. “There’s nothing wrong with being a
princess,” says the 32-year-old entrepreneur. “We just think girls
can build their own castles too.” This idea is backed by many
advocates who recognize that to disrupt the pink aisle, you can’t
start out by trying to obliterate it.
To influence through play the types of hobbies and academic
fields that women pursue, a company first must penetrate a very
competitive market. Creating toys that are void of things that
girls find appealing will only send girls scrambling for the nearest
Bratz or Disney princess doll. GoldieBlox toys may incorporate
traditional gender stereotypes, but they tweak and reframe them.
GoldieBlox spent years researching gender differences, seeking
significant input from Harvard neuroscientists, and observing
children’s play patterns. “Our stories leverage girls’ advanced
verbal skills to help develop and build self-confidence in their
spatial skills,” Sterling asserts.
Besides, Sterling was just getting started. Today, the
GoldieBlox portfolio is not only growing in number of play sets,
it’s becoming more diverse with three new characters who
ChapTer 5
have joined Goldie to create a team to which just about any girl
can relate. There’s Ruby Rails, a popular African American girl
who is a whiz at coding; Valentina Voltz, a Hispanic engineer;
and Li Gravity, Goldie’s long-time neighbor and best friend
who is an expert at physics who knows how to apply the laws
of his favorite science, performing stunts with superhero-like
precision. Together, these characters take girls on a variety
of adventures that go way beyond princess escapades—
such as skydiving, ziplining, and auto racing. Then there’s
the “Invention Mansion,” the play set Sterling refers to as the
“anti-dollhouse”—a 300-piece play set featuring a “Hacker
Hideway” that can be figured and reconfigured into hundreds
of different formats.
Whether or not the two sides to the debate will resolve their
differences in trying to achieve the same goal, there is no question that GoldieBlox has taken the toy industry by storm. If the
most recent annual North American International Toy Fair is any
indication, a little GoldieBlox seems to have rubbed off on just
about every other toy company. The first year that GoldieBlox set
up its booth at the trade show, the tech toy section was a wasteland. Today, nearly every booth features STEM toys, robots, and
a lot of not-so-pink products targeted at girls.
Although clearly motivated to put an end to the stereotypes
that have long been generated by the toy and entertainment industries, Sterling makes it clear that the goal is to become a multiplatform character brand à la Disney. “We want to be the brand
that kids are whining for.” If the next few years are anything like
GoldieBlox’s first few, it’s easy to envision a new kind of toy aisle
at the local supercenter—one that heavily features GoldieBlox’s
multiplatform brand.
| Consumer Markets and Buyer Behavior
185
Questions for Discussion
5-18
Of the factors that influence consumer behavior, which
category or categories (cultural, social, personal, or
psychological) best explain the existence of a blue toy
aisle and a pink toy aisle? Why?
5-19
Choose the specific factor (for example, culture, family, occupation, attitudes) that most accounts for the
blue/pink toy aisle phenomenon. Explain the challenges
faced by GoldieBlox in attempting to market toys that
“swim against the stream” or push back against the
forces of that factor.
5-20
To what degree is GoldieBlox bucking the blue/pink toy
aisle system?
5-21
If GoldieBlox succeeds at selling lots of its toys, will that
accomplish the mission of increasing the presence of
females in the field of engineering?
Sources: John Kell, “How Toy Startup GoldieBlox Made Diversity
a Priority,” Fortune, April 1, 2016, www.fortune.com/2016/04/01/
goldieblox-toy-startup-diversity/; “Hottest Toys of 2016: On the Ground
with GoldieBlox at the Toy Fair,” GeekGirlRising, www.geekgirlrising.
com/ hottest-toys-of-2016-focus-on-steam-ggr-and-goldieblox-onthe-ground-at-ny-toy-fair/, accessed June, 2016; Katy Waldman,
“GoldieBlox: Great for Girls? Terrible for Girls? Or Just Selling Toys?”
Slate, November 26, 2013, www.slate.com/blogs/xx_factor/2013/11/26/
goldieblox_disrupting_the_pink_aisle_or_just_selling_toys.html; Jennifer
Reingold, “Watch Out Disney: This Toy Startup’s Coming for You,”
Fortune, November 26, 2014, http://fortune.com/2014/11/26/goldieblox-toy-startup/; and information from www.goldieblox.com, accessed
June 2016.
MyLab Marketing
Go to mymktlab.com for the following Assisted-graded writing questions:
5-22 Explain the stages of the consumer buyer decision process and describe how
you or your family went through this process to make a recent purchase.
5-23 Discuss how lifestyle influences consumers’ buying behavior and how marketers
measure lifestyle.

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