Product management is actually a much stronger discipline with consumer companies – both in the FMCG and White Goods space. What has happened with the e-commerce companies is that they have actually taken the whole consumer marketing concept to a different scale. Having said that, all the companies which are successful even in the e-commerce space, have followed the basics of marketing / product management to the core.
What started this series of posts was the fact that while these companies were burning massive cash, they were still enjoying heavy premiums when they get listed in the stock market. So is it that they are blindly burning cash or is there a method to the madness.
I highlighted some of the concepts in yesterday’s post. Today let’s look at other things like Single Target Market. Amazon today is a very big market place where they sell their own products as well as provide a platform for others to sell and take a commission on items sold. But Amazon only started by selling books initially. They did not try to get into selling everything at once. And they just sold books first in the Americas before expanding.
Look at another company Uber – they were only the ride hailing App. They did not get into the Uber Eats or the Uber Connect till they had taken a dominant position in that market. Similarly Zappos – which is now part of Amazon – was only into selling shoes.
Generally when I talk of concepts and give ideas for targeting the customers, building partnerships, I speak from the perspective of a small or mid-sized company which is wanting to get into the market. So some of the ideas are very specific.
However the same concepts at a different level are also applicable over the e-commerce space. So while Amazon is a big daddy in the retail products space, a small start-up in India “Nykaa” started with just selling cosmetics and related products to ladies. Today if you want even a French perfume in India, your first port (in this case App) of choice would be Nykaa. Its become such a big brand for the cosmetics and related categories. Similarly in the fashion space its “Myntra”. These companies segmented the market even within e-commerce and specialised in certain areas and have made a success out of it.
So principles of marketing and product management won’t change, what could change is the scale, the risk and the delivery mechanisms.
Till next time then.