Bright Light Innovations: The Starlight Stove Bright Light Innovations has a top management team made up of students and faculty from Colorado State University’s Colleges of Business and Engineering. The management team has developed a product known as the Starlight Stove. This stove was developed in hopes to improve the overall quality of life for less fortunate people. The management team wishes to address the everyday consumer needs for safe cooking and electricity. The Starlight Stove requires less biomass fuel and also has the ability to convert heat from the stove into electricity.
This new feature gives everyday people the opportunity to enjoy safe cooking and electricity at an affordable price. The management team knows that they have great technology; they just need a marketing plan in order to get their product out on the market. The management team has decided that they would use Nepal as the opening target market. Even though they have identified many good reasons why the Starlight Stove would benefit Nepal they need to keep it mind, “it’s no easy task to identify strategies for entering new international markets or to decide which countries to do business with” (Khanna, Palepu & Sinha, 2007).
Moving into an international market is a good strategy because they usually are developing countries. These countries have some of the fastest growing markets, especially for new, affordable, reliable technology and can be very profitable for a company. One thing that the management team does need to keep in mind though is that developing countries can sometimes lack in certain tools needed to do business successfully. “But avoid investing in developing countries, and you won’t remain competitive for long” (Khanna, Palepu & Sinha, 2007).
Despite all the research that the Bright Light Innovation team has done, they are still unsure if they will be able to get financing for the Nepalese people. “Financing in the form of grants, government relief, or donations is unreliable. If it is not renewed, projects willow or die” (Perreault, Cannon & McCarthy, 2009). The management team also does not know if the Nepal government will even give permission to try the Starlight Stove. If for some reason the Nepal government does not approve the product, Bright Light’s Innovation team could present their product to another country that share that similar demographics as Nepal.
There are many poor countries in which their people suffer from not having the technology and resources for everyday living. “For those who live without electricity—about one in four people worldwide—activities often grind to a halt when darkness falls. The lack of light reinforces the cycle of poverty: Adults are unable to work in the evening, and for children, homework is out of the question” (Schenker, 2008). The Starlight Stove has a lot to offer to the Nepalese people, but it can be a challenge to inform them of this when less than have of the adults can read.
The management team will have to look for other ways to promote their product. The team needs to look into using pictures that speak for themselves, keep the use of words to a minimal. Use different pictures to compose different advertisements that show the different benefits of the Starlight Stove. One advertisement could show children doing their homework using a light powered by the electricity from the stove. Another advertisement could indicate someone cooking safely without all of the pollution. In developing different ads the management team needs to keep in mind the needs and wants of the Nepalese people.
They also need to try not to become so wrapped up in the promotion of the product and lose attention on the actual product itself. Having a good product, once out on the market, can sell itself. “No amount of advertising helps a poor product” (Belosic, 2011). One the other hand, “a good product advertises itself” (Belosic, 2011). The Bright Light Innovation team needs to be aware that there is a relationship between the advertising objectives of a product and the market strategy planning of the company. They need to come up with certain advertisement objectives that will fit their market.
The management team also needs to be aware that since this is a new product they will need to allow for a bigger budget for advertising. More advertising will have to be done in order to get consumers aware of the product and interested in purchasing it. Once the product has an established name, the advertising budget can be cut down. Hopefully the product works as intended and the best and free advertisement starts to take place, “word of mouth”. In order to decided on a reasonable price for the Starlight Stove the management team should consider what they are offering. Developing a pricing strategy begins with determining the true value of your offerings to customers” (Pricing: The Magic Number, 2006). We are aware that the Nepalese people are poor and can not afford a lot, but a company can not just price a product low thinking that it will sell better (that they will sell more of). Competitors are always looking for a new door to enter and the management team does not want to face a price war with any competitor who may be looking for some competition. The management team wants to avoid price wars with competitors at all cost.
Price wars force companies to lower cost and distract customers from looking at the real benefits of the product. Bright Light’s Innovation team wants to sell a product that will increase the quality of life for the Nepalese people, not rob them of their money. “If you provide a superior product, you probably tend to charge a higher price than competitors. Customers buy your product because they perceive that its benefit advantage more than outweighs the price premium they pay” (Walter, Baker, Marn & Zawada, 2010).
Even though Bright Light Innovations does not want to charge an amount that no one would be able to afford, they should still not charge the lowest price possible. The Nepalese people may look at the product as not being very beneficial or as a junk product. We are already aware that they do not have a lot of money to begin with, so if they view the product as “junk”, they may not want to spend any of the little money they have. The price should reflect what the product offers with out charging an outrageous amount. Overall Bright Light’s Innovation team has a good strategy and target market for the Starlight Stove.
If they price and promote their product correctly they should not have any trouble selling it, being that they get the approval to do so. References Baker, W. , Marn, M. , & Zawada, C. (2010, July 6). Book expcerpt- the price advantage, Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved from http://www. businessweek. com/managing/content/jul2010/ca2010076_307575. htm. Belosic, J. (2011, August 11). When in doubt, focus on the product, Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved from http:// www. businessweek. com /smallbiz/tips/archives/2011/08/when_in_doubt_focus_on_the_product. html. Khanna, T. , Palepu, K. , & Sinha, J.
Strategies that fit emerging markets, Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved from http:// www. businessweek. com/ managing/content/nov2007/ca20071113_998975. htm. Schenker, J. (2008, July 17). A solar-powered night-light for the poor, Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved from http:// www. businessweek. com/ magazine/content/08_30/b4093060818968. htm. Perreault, W, Cannon, J, & McCarthy E. (2009). Basic marketing: a marketing strategy planning approach. McGraw-HillIrwin. Pricing: the magic number. (2006). Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved from http:// www. businessweek. com/ magazine/content/06_52/b4015452. htm.