One of the world's most valuable companies is coming. Is it a threat? No, don’t be afraid. Be prepared.
It is 07.04 am. I want waffles, but I do not have a waffle maker. So I order it online and have it delivered to my doorstep as soon as possible. I hardly get to lose my craving for waffles that morning. The waffle maker arrives 24 minutes later, and another 15 minutes onwards, I eat my first crisp, homemade waffle. It’s not even 8 am yet.
The event is five years old, but even now, in 2020, it beats the future - at least for many Danish consumers who are used to shopping online and having the product delivered curbside the next day.
The closest we get to a fast delivery is to pick it up at the store two hours later. We can’t order, pay, get it delivered, and make waffles in 39 minutes.
That’s what an American did in 2015, and although his video on YouTube may be fake or flawed, the message still goes straight in: Amazon is coming - and it's coming fast.
Time to market has been shortened, and this should give you, as the marketing manager, an opportunity to look at whether your foundation in the marketing department is in place.
Ultimately, it's about seeing competition from Amazon as a catalyst to rise to the occasion rather than a message to fear the worst.
So do not be afraid of Amazon, be prepared.
Amazon has just arrived in Sweden, and it's only a matter of time before the market shares in the retail chains are turned around.
At The Danish Chamber of Commerce, a survey in 2020 shows that more than half of Danish companies see Amazon as a threat. However, many also regard Amazon as an opportunity to increase sales because Amazon represents the very sales channel they need to grow substantially.
Amazon's presence will challenge our marketing strategies, and we'll have to look at our toolbox to make sure we're prepared to meet the challenge. .
In my eyes it's about being efficient. Amazon takes on our ability to be agile, to respond to sudden changes in the market, and to create campaigns in a short amount of time.
Is your ecosystem optimized for Amazon’s entry? Does the collaboration flow across the organization and externally with freelancers and agencies, so you feel confidently efficient enough to deliver - with or without Amazon as a platform?
In the old days, when content was king, you had a lot of content. You knew your keyword strategy intimately. Now, there is too much content, and content should build trust not overwhelm you.
The content must be relevant. It must have quality. It should be easy to find and easy to reuse if necessary. Besides, we have to acknowledge that we are not the only content producers.
The challenge is that there are so many touchpoints where the customer delivers user-generated content, such as reviews and comments. That content must be obtained by marketing.
It's all about finding the content across channels and then collecting it, processing it, and broadcasting it through the channels where you expect to meet your customer.
Because you have to meet the customer where the customer is; that is, before the customer even thinks about price, delivery, or the overall shopping experience, and preferably before the customer even thinks of Amazon. Content is everywhere and so is the customer.
Amazon taught us that we need to embrace the customer's opinion.
It seems more credible with tons of user recommendations than tons of fancy words from the manufacturer itself. We have gradually realized this; we have learned from Amazon.
The user-driven content is a production that we must make better use of. It starts with smoother processes and it's about seeing the big picture from the bridge. It’s a matter of creating an overview that is operational.
Strategically, it is about ensuring the quality of the content that customers deliver. The quantity must be sorted and this requires an overview in the first instance. This is where technology should be your best friend.
The story of the waffle maker is the story of time to market. It's the story of modern technologies. And it's the story of two topics being competitive parameters that we can influence ourselves.
And because the complexity is getting larger by the day. Because there is content everywhere. Because collaboration is scattered. And because campaigns are subject to workflows and traditions that Amazon's speed challenges to the maximum, as a marketing manager, you have to start with an analysis:
- How do we get an overview of the channels that customers are on?
- How do we utilise the content in a structured way?
- How do we create efficient processes that make our time to market compatible?
Technology can come to the marketing department's rescue in the form of a central platform, a cockpit that collects the information digitally and communicates with other systems.
There are many opportunities to improve your time to market. Crucially, we see the arrival of Amazon as a catalyst demanding that it be done now.