Tag Archive | british high street

Competition

Competition needn't be scary

Competition needn't be scary

Competition is a good thing.

It generally encourages brands to try harder to secure new customers, and to double their efforts to keep their existing ones. The old adage, ‘familarity breeds contempt’ needn’t always be true!

But,  if the competition aren’t snapping at your profit margins / market share, it’s easier to become just a little complacent and let prices creep up, take your eye off quality control, and not worry quite so much about innovating…

With the recession biting, we’re seeing some rather worrying conglomerates emerging. Lloyds TSB scooped up the HBOS group* (Halifax / Bank of Scotland), which required the government to conveniently ignore competition laws they’d introduced just a few years back in order to ensure against such events.

Now, we see the Icelandic company Baugur is on the brink of collapse. The cash rich Phillip Green (who already has a hand in much of the Great British High Street), is primed and ready to scoop up vast swathes of the high street at a knock-down price. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against big business. Far from it.

Just so long as consumers don’t end up getting a raw deal at the other end…

Iain Morrison is a senior marketer in the British Tourism Industry. *And a shareholder in our banks. Just like the rest of the British taxpayers…

Too little, too late…

Going, going, gone...

Going, going, gone...

So Shopdirect is re-launching the Woolworths brand in summer 2009. But, there will not be a high street store in sight. The brand is being launched as an online e-tailer. But will it work?
Part of the ‘charm’ of the Woolies brand experience was coming in, having a rummage and finding a bargain; that  real diamond in amongst aisles of tatt. A product that you simply couldn’t do without at that bargain price.
But how will that shopping experience translate as the brand is relaunched online? Some serious re-positioning will be required to make this a succesful venture…
Lest we forget, Branson offloaded his music store empire at just the right time (those involved in the management buy-out should have known better!), and sadly, Woolies were very slow to invest in their digital arm. The business stuck to its guns when the rest of the high street (and world) moved on.
Ironically, they pumped money into their web offering last year. But it was just too late to save them.  One things for sure, it’s going to be an interesting year on the British High Street…
Iain Morrison is a senior marketer in the British Tourism Industry. And wondering where the youth of today will steal their pick and mix from…
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