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Where on earth is Reebok?

Reebok. The only Reebok thing I own is a navy Reebok bag, which I got for an extreme discount about 4 years ago. I got it because it was a discount, and if there was a Nike bag, I definitely would have gotten that instead.

See, back in the day, Reebok was just as good as Nike. Now, Reebok is dead. I know they still have them in stores, but to me, they’re invisible – Nike, Adidas, and Under Armor are the first that come to my mind. (albeit, Adidas owns Reebok now…) Today, Reebok’s combined market share together with its parent company, Adidas, only amounts to 11%, while Nike is thriving on 44% (2008). Reebok’s biggest segment – the shoe department – dropped even more recently, especially with women’s athletic footwear dropping from 3.6% to 1.9% market share this year. Meanwhile again, Nike’s share rose to 45.7%.

While I’ve seen Reebok trying to regain some shares in the women’s apparels and footwear segments through more creative advertising, there has been and still is a fundamental problem: REEBOK HAS NO BRAND VISIBILITY.

Before trying to target certain audiences, Reebok must try and understand where consumers stand. “What are the attributes of the Reebok brand?” Ans: “dull, old, antique, grayish…” Funny thing is, there’s not even any emotion that partakes in this attribute building exercise for me. I don’t hate it. And I don’t like it. It’s just… Somewhere out there…

So what is my recommended solution?

Start by rebuilding the audience. Check where the problem lies. Only then, begin by reconsidering its product line to see whether it’s on the right track to winning customers. And only then even consider starting a creative campaign like the one above. And if they do, it should start introducing the TOTALLY NEW Reebok – tell us, tell me that there’s a NEW Reebok out there to get my attention!

Wish I had more time and space to actually write up a strategic plan. But all the luck to Reebok. Hope I can regain my faith in a brand I once loved as a child.


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What Google Needs… For Its Future

Google. Wow. It’s a revolution. It’s simple. It’s clean. And it’s cool.

It has many, many cool features. And it’s fast.

It’s definitely what we need in today’s world of computing.

But let’s take it down the line of time: say, in 10 years?

According to Pew Internet & American Life Project, global technology will be low cost – and virtually everywhere. Virtual reality will become reality in the workforce and at home. The speed of the Internet will be at a minimum of 1 gigabit per second, anywhere on earth. (Right now, the fastest offered by Verizon FiOS is 50 megabits per second – my Comcast is at 6mbps, so imagine around 100 times faster, or you can download around 15,000 MP3 songs in a minute).

Now, do you think you will use text-based, minimal graphics offered by Google? I know I won’t.

So let’s tackle the problems first. First off, Google, unless you set it up to your personal page, only gives you the minimalist option – a keyword search bar, a cool Google logo, and some links that you have to click on to navigate through. In 10 years, this will become a nuisance. Even today, Google’s coolest new products aren’t really visible – unless you actually go into their cool features page.

Google must start preparing for the development of newest technologies. It’s business model – text-based, non-cluttered advertising based on its super clean and fast text-based searches, should somehow be changed. It needs to rework its landing page, and start bringing in more interactivity and graphics and multimedia. It’s time to start shifting to a new era and reposition itself if it wants to hold its #1 spot in searches.

If Google doesn’t prepare (I’m sure they are preparing internally), Yahoo, Bing, AOL, and even Lycos could become the next leaders in search engines.

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