Monthly archives: April 2012

Marketing Strategy – The Dollar Shave Club

The Dollar Shave Club is a really innovative concept. It is a great example of how to hit at a monopoly and get around a distribution channel.

The ad has over 4 million hits on and counting.

Key lessons from the DSC (Dollar Shave Club).

1. New channel to consumer. It is able to break in to a market long dominated by the big boys, e.g Gillette and Schick. It achieves this via distribution online – direct to the consumer.

2. Innovative marketing. The use of a youtube video and social media has increased awareness of the DSC very rapidly at a relatively low cost. The advantage of social media sharing is that it normally comes from a trusted source which we are likelier to listen to.

3. Understand the consumer. The DSC ad shows that it really understands the consumer. Shaving is a daily affair. It is also something that people rarely see – as such a expensive or designer razor is unlikely to excite the consumer. It has shaped its business model on the average lazy guy by offering convenience and a decent product.

4. Segment your customer. While it’s called the Dollar Shave Club, the price goes up to USD9/month. With 3 types of razors, it is able to hit the various types of consumer and hopefully retain them.

These lessons are applicable for any new business trying to enter a business dominated by a monopoly.




Bounce – How Champions are made – by Matthew Syed

Matthew Syed was a former British No.1 table tennis champion. Educated at Oxford, he writes and produces films on sports. His book, Bounce, dispels the McKinsey-ish beliefs on champions with natural talent. He systematically dispels the myth of talent by dissecting sports from table tennis in England to Kenyan runners.

Key takeaways include :-
1. 10,000 hours of practice. He applies the Gladwell formula of 10,000 hours of practice to achieve a world class standard. He cites the example of 90% of Kenyan runners coming from a village where they had to run 21km to school and back every day from the age of 4. By the time the Kenyan hit 21, he/she would have achieved 10,000 hours of practice. In applying this to the business world, people can be successful after their 10,000 hours of practice. Examples cited include table tennis champions with “slow” natural reflexes. Their skills come from being able to read the other player to know where the ball will be. In applying this to a business setting, an accountant after 10,000 hours of practice may be able to take a quick look at the books and “know” where the issues lie. Even Anthony Robbins talks about the importance of gaining as much experience as you can to be good at something.

2. The practice must be purposeful. There must be feedback – the person has to learn from his/her mistakes and ensure that they don’t repeat them. The practice is repetitive and it is mentally taxing.

3. Skills for success include passion and motivation for the chosen field. Without this, one cannot succeed.

Overall, it’s a well written insightful read. Syed’s book is applicable to new parents as well as leaders who want to improve the competency of their organization.