BOOST FOR BRANDS
BOOST FOR BRANDS
Geoff Vuleta’s consulting practice might be summed up in four words: small firm, big promises. His company, Fahrenheit 212, consists of a couple dozen people in a sleek Manhattan office and brags that it mints ideas to boost a company’s revenue by $100 million. Clients have included Adidas AG and Proctor & Gamble Co. Samsung Electronics Co. found a new market for its flat-panel displays with help from Fahrenheit 212: The South Korean manufacturer now sells touch screens for vending machines that make the button for a sold-out soda disappear and play videos to seduce passersby. Bloomberg Markets asked Vuleta what he would recommend for several other large companies.
Eastman Kodak Co.
PROBLEM Photographic film has become obsolete. “Few companies have endured a pulling out of the rug as dramatic as Kodak has.”
SOLUTION “Radical, heroic reinvention of printing as a product, business model and experience.” Computer printers are universally disliked, Vuleta says. They’re changing too slowly as computer activities all go mobile. “If I’m watching something on TV and I want to print it, why can’t I?”
General Motors Co.
PROBLEM “Fifty years of market decline could end up being GM’s defining legacy.”
SOLUTION “Create the 21st-century car-buying experience – a way of selling dreams, not mere metal.” Take Apple Inc. stores as a model, Vuleta suggests, or the service standards of a high-end hotel. “By focusing on a pain point that is not yours alone, but industrywide, you gain future competitive advantage.”
PROBLEM “Beyond Petroleum” tag line promises something a gas station can’t really deliver.
SOLUTION “Spend the next five years building that killer app – not talking the green talk, just walking the green walk.” Get the BP name on tangible and large-scale alternative energy projects, for example. “We think ‘Beyond Petroleum’ is the right vision, but it’s suffered from going high profile prematurely.”
By Anthony Effinger
Bloomberg Markets Magazine