Marketing Generics Blog

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TI's Wolverine Ad

Semiconductor Marketing gets Sexy

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Semiconductor marketing has for a variety of reasons historically been incredibly turgid, technical and dull.  This is often explained by arguing that B2B and B2C marketing are very different animals – never the twain shall meet - and that the marketing of semis falls squarely in the B2B domain, therefore not sexy by nature, and not even appropriate to be sexy. In this paradigm there is little or nothing that can be learnt or adapted from B2C marketing as it is “just not applicable to our situation”.  But life is changing.  My own view happens to be that:
  1. There is much less difference between B2B and B2C than imagined - good marketing follows certain basic principles and process that are applicable in both

  2. The best exemplars of marketing practice are often found in B2C, so why not look and learn what we can from B2C?

  3. B2B and technology marketing will inevitably move, and indeed is moving closer and closer to B2C models.  As it becomes harder and harder to differentiate by technology alone, so products and technologies become increasingly commoditised, and sharper marketing becomes critical - so you might as well learn what you can from B2C and use whatever is going to help you

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The Coming 3rd Industrial Revolution?

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Disruptive technologies seems to be firmly back on the agenda, with electric cars, driverless cars, cloud computing, new materials compounds, wearable computing, 3D printing and so on, figuring prominently in press.  Of these, one of the most interesting has surely to be 3D printing. 

Whilst the technology has been around for some time (in fact the first technology was invented by Charles Hull in 1984!), (click here to read the history of 3D printing ),  it’s only just now that a combination of factors is making 3D printing a reality, including printer costs approaching mass market pricing.  If the first Industrial Revolution was all about factories and mass manufacturing, and the 2nd revolution was about digitisation and electronics, could the 3rd industrial revolution could be brought about by the relatively humble 3D printer? 

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One of many Armani stores in Hong Kong

Hong Kong - SimCity with brands

Friday, May 10, 2013

If Taiwan suffers from a lack of brands (cf ) then Hong Kong clearly suffers from the opposite – too many brands, too much, and brands dominating everywhere you go.  ‘Shoppers’ heaven’ it may be, but two days in HK and I’m all branded out, exhausted from brand overload: Gucci, Chanel, Armani, Coach and so on, wherever you go in the shops; Ferraris, Carreras, and the big Mercedes SUVs on the roads.

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Downtown Taipei April 2013

Taiwan’s major role in the electronics industry

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Am back in Taiwan after 20 years and obviously much has changed.  At that time there were nationalist flags everywhere, and a feeling a of an island somewhat under siege and desperate to forge its own identify and prove its place in the world.  Fast-forward to today and there seems to be a more relaxed, even if ambiguous relationship with China, and certainly more affluence and more confidence of Taiwan’s role in the world.  Today Taiwan is a powerful force in world trade, particularly in technology, even if only a relatively small country (23million people), and Taiwan has managed to punch above its weight.  In the paper here today are reports of Taiwan companies figuring in the Forbes 2000 largest companies, 41 of which are now Taiwanese. 

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Christmas In Shanghai Dec 1st

Christmas is coming and the Peking Duck is getting fat

Saturday, December 01, 2012

How and why the Chinese have taken to Christmas

It’s the 1st of December, and the moment when the Chinese can release an orgy of Christmas-fest.  It still surprises me to see the Chinese celebrating Christmas, but boy, how they go for it.  Of course when the Chinese decide to do something they do it big, and Christmas is really BIG now in China.  Not the Christmas we know in the West as a religious event, but Christmas as a commercial and fun event.  Maybe as the country which produces more Christmas baubles, fake fir trees, Santas, hats and glitter than any other country it’s not so surprising that some of this might rub off somewhere, but why do the Chinese celebrate Christmas now in such a big way?

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“Fish where the fish are”.  Can simple marketing lessons help a nation grow?

Thursday, October 25, 2012

One of the best marketing lessons I learnt some time ago was contained in the expression ‘fish where the fish are’ which implies first, finding out where the fish are and fishing there, but also the notion of moving on when the fish have moved to somewhere else.  This phrase is apt for understanding what’s happening at the moment to trade between the UK and Europe.   As the UK stares into the increasingly inward-looking and all-consuming vortex  that is the European Union crisis, some interesting things have been happening to the UK’s trade.  Firstly, UK trade last quarter with countries outside Europe exceeded trade with countries inside Europe for the first time.  This should not surprise us, because a simple look at where the fish are tells us they are no longer in Europe.  The fact is that the opportunities are bigger outside Europe than in. 

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What did the US House of Representative Select Committee really say about Huawei?

Friday, October 19, 2012

Huawei is very much in the news today as the leading global ICT solutions provider is the subject of a damming investigative report published by the US House of Representative Select Committee, which investigated whether the Chinese telecommunications equipment vendors, Huawei and ZTE pose a national security threat. Although Huawei protest their innocence, the committee certainly had a right to investigate.  So what threat was perceived, and what did the US Committee really say?

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Projected Japanese Car Maker Sales in China for Q4

How can a few uninhabited islands trash world trade?

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Being in China and reading only Chinese version of the news every days certainly gives one a different perspective on life and makes one realise how interlinked and co-dependant the economies of the world are today.   Insult Islam and your flag gets burned and maybe your ambassador gets killed:  insult China’s territorial status and you end up losing millions or billions of $ of trade, as the Japanese are finding out the hard way as the spat over the Diaoyu Islands shows no sign of abating.

I, like many (and probably many Japanese or Chinese) had certainly never heard of the Diaoyu Islands until a few weeks ago, but their recent ‘purchase’ by the Japanese Government has provoked a major reaction here, at both government and consumer level.  Whilst the history of these islands is complex and ownership is claimed and currently disputed by both China and Japan, neither side was actively disputing them until 1968 when it discovered that oil might be there, and more recently the Japanese Government purchase of the islands from an individual reignited the story. 

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