Make Marketing History

The views of a marketing deviant.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Strategy And Marketing - Two Sides Of The Same Coin.

So eBay overpaid for Skype - well that's a revelation and yet I'm reading that this was a failure of marketing - a 1.0 mentality failing to come to terms with a 2.0 world (as if that actually means anything).

Just as marketing cannot save a product/service that doesn't meet the customer's needs, neither cannot it save a flawed strategy. Did a company that disrupted and simplified the auction business by taking it online actually need a phone system to enhance something that was working superbly already or did it see a potential capital gain and seek to justify it in strategic terms?

Marketing is and should be at the heart of any business because it combines the strategic and the tactical but it's important to remember that the strategic element starts right back at the product and not as a grandiose embellishment to tactics like advertising or PR.

2 Comments:

Blogger Randy Noval said...

What if the ebay purchase were not for branding or marketing, but instead an extension of what their current system is based on, i.e. trust. ebay functions because there is implied trust in the transactions (sellers & buyers trust ebay to protect them, they trust each other because they see ratings, can leave feedback, etc.). what if ebay were to take skype and directly add it in to the "system" so that the communication channel opens up. rather than leaving public / private emails, you can call the person directly, leave voicemails directly, etc. what if the skype / ebay mashup were expanded to allow for auction-based voice transport at the carrier level?

this has been getting a lot of press, but if (admittedly a big giant IF) they people at ebay are smarter than the masses, then they may have come up with something far more intelligent that combines the strengths of both. something that the masses don't have the foresight to see because everyone's so focused on the short-term.

just some thoughts.

11:42 AM, October 02, 2007  
Blogger john dodds said...

That is exactly what they aimed to do - but people weren't interested because the system works fine already. It was a strategicaly flawed acquisition - an add-on that people didn't want. No amount of marketing could save it.

3:55 PM, October 02, 2007  

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