Aqualisa Harvard Case Study

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In 2001 Aqualisa created a new product, Quartz, which they felt revolutionized the shower industry. Much to their dismay the new product was having a difficult time selling. After analyzing their marketing strategy I have found several reasons for the Quartz low sales volumes. 1. Placement in premium segment

2. Poor marketing to customers, plumbers.
3. Small retail network

When launching the new product, Aqualisa decided that Quartz should be placed in the premium segment. Consumers in the premium segment typically shopped in showrooms. However showers purchased in showrooms only accounted for only 12.7% of mixer showers. By branding their product in the premium segment they have handicapped there sales by virtue of branding. Likewise the Quartz standard is priced €135 over the next cheapest shower. This high price point limited sales of the new product.

Only 27% of all consumers select the brand and type of shower without any influence from plumbers. Aqualisa marketed the Quartz to the consumer and not the customer. Plumbers are very loyal to showers and very reluctant to adopt changes and skeptical of “innovations”. Aqualisa assumed that because their product was better, customers (plumbers) would quickly switch brands and type. By failing to market directly to plumbers Aqualisa has limited their sales volumes. Although plumbers quickly “converted” after installing Quartz, getting them to install them the first time turned out to be the most difficult.

Plumbers tended to make purchases in trade shops, however only 40% of all trade shops in the U.K. carried the Aqualisa brand. Even if plumbers did want to install a Quartz shower, the majority of stores did not carry the brand. Aqualisa needs to push their brand into more stores in order to increase volume. In addition to the small volume in trade shows, the sales force of Aqualisa does an inadequate job of promoting the Quartz. The sales force spends about 90% of their...
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