Archives For crowd funding

Branding: Dodge Dart New Rules Campaign Mainstreams Strategic Shifts

Dodge’s “New Rules” marketing campaign manifests the shift from strategic planning committees and waterfall product development to the “Ready-Fire-Aim-Repeat” agile product development that was the topic of my last full post :

2013 Is No Time For Strategy“.

The Dodge Dart introduction is clearly aimed at a 20-something target market segment who are expecting empowerment to make product decisions on the fly, trade off a high tolerance for failure for iterative speed to market, and fit a budget of under $16 thousand. In addition to the New Rules for how to build a car, there is a follow-on New Rules commercial for how to buy a car where a gift registry is created and the buyer’s friends and family can donate parts of the car – essentially crowd funding the car. Given the complexity and risks of designing and manufacturing a new car, the fact that a major automobile manufacturer has mainstreamed these new approaches in its marketing is in itself a telling illustration of the pervasiveness of the high-level shift from planning to doing.

Regardless of the success of this product introduction, or to what extent these product development methods were actually implemented in the design and manufacture of the car (I have not researched it), it is also telling that established industry is in some way placing newer, nimble competition on notice that they are reacting to a growing threat of disruption being felt in many vertical markets. It would be interesting to learn to what extent the halo effect of this type of product branding might help Dodge recruit more like-minded employees this year. Here’s the first commercial:

Planting Money

Planting Money (Photo credit: Tax Credits)

If #CrowdFunding becomes the new #seed funding, then will #Angel funding become the new A Round?

2013 Is No Time For Strategy

February 21, 2013

Investment Conference Investment Conference (Photo credit: Salmaan Taseer)

Everyone has a plan, until they get punched in the face – Mike Tyson

One of the tweets I received in January declared 2013 is “The Year of Doing”. I am just coming around to fully appreciating what that means.  We are in the midst of a trend of epic proportions toward execution over deliberation. This shift is very evident in strategic planning, project development, and capital investment.  As someone who has presided over many strategic planning processes, I am not sure I completely buy into this, but the trend is unmistakeable.

Traditionally, you could think of management as the planners, the doers, and the counters. The lines have blurred over time, but the planners’ specialty was targeting the hogs, while we all know the doers brought in the bacon. Until the recent past, in order for a venture capitalist or corporate leader to invest in an initiative, you had to build a pretty bulletproof, strategic business case.  It was expected that you would have done significant expansive research, pushed all of that data through a number of trusted strategic frameworks, come up with a shortlist of alternatives, and used logic and communication skills to prove the optimal business case to achieve corporate goals.  That understates a managed strategic planning effort that took months to create, enlisted diverse opinions, and required more months to diligence and gain approvals prior to any implementation.

Little to none of that strategic planning process appears to matter anymore. As the eminent thought leaders at the failed WebVan would attest*, regardless of your strategic planning proficiency, only hindsight is 20-20.

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