Recently Forbes published an article listing the companies that will continue shutting down operations in 2010. The list has some well known brands: Blockbuster, Starbucks, Walden Books, Ritz Camera and Zales to name a few. And, while all of these companies share in their financial crisis – only some will see the light of day again as disposable incomes peek out of the darkness of the recession.
People will buy coffee again. Men will purchase jewelry again for their wives, girlfriends and mothers.
Other industries have faced their ‘music’ so to speak as Internet enhancing technology proliferates. Fundamental changes have been occurring for some time – no surprises. The music industry with plummeting CD sales and rising piracy issues had to get clever and quick to save itself – and is still struggling with the paradigm shift. And, who would ever think of buying a car without being armed with manufacturing costs, dealer mark-up data and blue book value of that trade-in?
The playing field has changed – yet, again. What won’t we do anymore?
We won’t drive to a physical location and browse the aisles in search of the latest release only to find it ‘taken’. Not when we can download, immediately, at no extra cost, from the likes of NetFlix.
We won’t accept anything less than ‘killer-category’ inventory and bargain pricing for our written word – physical or E. And, if we’re going to visit a bookstore it has more to do with the social opportunities – complete with coffee and live music.
We won’t print out hundreds and hundreds of 4×5’s and spend countless hours placing them in albums that take up valuable space and never get looked at. Not when endless slide shows can play dust-free with minimal foot print.
So while Forbes’ list places the majority of the blame on the economic climate culprit – and, there’s no question that it is a contributing factor – the reality is that time has passed by the likes of the Blockbusters, Walden Books and Ritz Cameras of the world. We no more need them than we need a public phone booth (although this has proven tricky for Superman) or a cigarette lighter at a concert.
And while we’re no longer allowed those annoying phone busy signals to let the world know we’re unavailable, I still hope you have a little time to spend on the MarketingSmack: www.marketingsmack.wordpress.com or visit us at www.summitstrategypartners.com.