LEGO’s Approach to Customer-orientation

Everyone knows or has heard of the colorful bricks that can be combined to form all sorts of shapes, figures and creative constructions. The LEGO toy brick have been and still is a cornerstone in children’s education and play, and has been acclaimed “Toy of the Century” by Fortune Magazine in this millennium.

The LEGO Group which is a private held company based in Billund, Denmark, is still owned by the Kirk Kristiansen family, who established LEGO in 1932. Today LEGO has approx. 10.000 employees who provide toys and other teaching materials in more than 130 countries (LEGO website). The name LEGO comes from combining the two first letters in LEG GODT, in English “Play Well”, and also happens to mean “I put together” in Latin.

The LEGO group is a very innovative company, with a keen focus on following the pace of the market and developing tomorrow’s products. The rage of products has expanded to suit a greater variety of ages. Products such as Duplo, Lego, Lego Techno and LEGO MINDSTORMS, as well as LEGO’s recently developed online environments, where people can create avatars, interact, share information and get inspired. Platforms and forums for social medias increases as well, digital play experiences as well as a new concept called LEGO Design byME, allowing consumers to put together virtual Lego models on their computers with the option of buying them.

This article gives you a short insight into how LEGO focus on and interact with consumers to develop future product and services in line with consumer needs, preferences and interests. LEGO is an interesting example because LEGO.com currently ranks as the No. 1 family and children website, underlining there success in creating an online environment for their target groups.

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SAP Provides CRM but Don’t They Need it?

 “And everyone at SAP knows that if customers love you everything else takes care of itself,” Co-Ceo Bill McDermott told reporters in a first public appearance with his counterpart Jim Hagemann Snabe at a news conference at the CeBit trade fair.

In addition to SAP CRM (Customer Relationship Management), their products offerings consist of SAP ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning), PLM (Product Lifecycle Management), SCM (Supply Chain Management), and many others. Particularly, SAP’s CRM system helps companies by giving them a single view of each customer where they can arrange their information ahead of sales, marketing, and services to their network. SAP believes that in our competitive business world, companies who have a competitive advantage are the companies which are customer oriented and giving their full focus on their customer’s satisfaction. “Delivering an outstanding customer experience is key to setting yourself apart from the pack.” Also according to SAP, “Companies seek to retain their best customers and maximize the effectiveness of every customer interaction – whether it’s sales, service, or marketing.”

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Amer Sports Tapping into both B2B and B2C

Amer Sports, a leading company in the sport equipment market, is a financial group which chose to specialise in the sport industry and today, consists of many different strong sport brands. The group is facing two challenges when dealing with Customer Relationship Management (CRM) strategy; by dealing with professional customers and also with end users, it must play on two different fields. I worked for a year as an intern in Amer Sport’s French subsidiary as the Retail and Trade Marketing Manager Assistant on the Salomon brand, and I must say that I have never heard the term “Customer Relationship Management” during my whole internship.

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Everybody can make a sandwich – The question is just how you do it!

The Subway brand, with its innovative service approach, crafty pricing strategy and delicious meals, has in the last years grown massively; not only in reputation but the chain has also surpassed McDonald’s in having more restaurants worldwide. The chain works with the discipline of operational excellence and has a creative and extraordinary business idea that just amazes me and has really changed my perception of the fast food industry. There are so many fast food chains out there today that are incredible in the way they do business; being innovative seeking to get their customers to buy more and more from them; but Subway, according to many, takes the standard of the fast food industry to other levels and is in a class of its own.

If you think about it, the Subway sandwiches and menu’s are not particularly cheap, and the restaurants does not provide an upscale, chic environment that could please a huge crowd like many of the other popular fast food chains. Yet they always somehow provide a sense of personalisation, belonging and a feeling that they listen and indeed, actually care about what you have to say; all this while being very productive with handling customer requests at the same time. Continue reading

Darty – The Contract of Confidence

Darty is a French firm specializing in electrical retailing. Wholly-owned subsidiary of the UK company Kesa Electrical Pl. Currently, Darty is mainly present in France, with 224 stores. The company is quite famous in France, and had revenues of €2921 million in 2011, with a 4.6% positive change compared to 2010 (Platt, 2011). The interesting point of the company is that it is highly focused on enhancing its relationship with the customers. Darty makes this customer relationship management its main argument for sale.

Today, and since its creation, Darty’s originality comes from the willingness of committing in terms of price, choice and service. This customer relationship management is based on what is called the “contract of confidence”, which represents the company’s promise. It is the pillar on which Darty’s strategy relies. Continue reading

CRM in Football – The Case of Manchester City FC

Customer relationship management applies beyond the traditional product and service offerings. CRM has become a core strategic element of sports clubs that recognise the importance of managing and understanding their supporters. For many fans, the football brand is a passion! Due to their cultural ties and emotional appeal, sports clubs surpass organisations operating outside the realm of sports in brand adoration and loyalty. However, this brand craze creates a complex environment and requires careful management and anticipation. This process is especially difficult in the football industry where competition over followers is fierce. It is evident that football without fans wouldn’t be the sport that it is today; a weak fan base leads football clubs to ruin. Fans, as customers, are the base of the football club’s economic model and should not be taken for granted; they fill up stadiums, buy merchandise, and attract sponsorships. Continue reading

Singapore Airlines, A Great Way To Fly

The success of an intangible service, relies heavily on its ability to make  an emotional bond with its customers.  Each moment of truth creates an experience that enhances the relationship and brings about loyalty in the customers. Singapore Airlines (SIA), the world’s second largest airline based on market capitalisation, has been successful in delivering an excellent service and in creating an exceptional experience for its customers throughout their journeys.  Continue reading