Case Study - Business 101

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“The Burton Way”|
Case Study: Burton Snowboards|
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Jake Burton
Hometown:
Burlington, Vermont

Key External Environmental Conditions that Influence Burton Snowboards Social Environment
Burton has used the social environment to embody the values and attitudes of snowboarders world-wide. Burton has made snowboarding a way of life. While people were talking about the boards Burton created, the company concentrated on making the sport of snowboarding great and recognized by all. Burton spearheaded the effort in the 1980’s to legalize snowboarding at ski resorts. Snowboarding “way of life” came about as a natural response to the culture from which it emerged. There was a rebellion against the skiing culture and the view that snowboarding was inferior. Skiers did not easily accept this new culture on their slopes, but Jake Burton, Burton Snowboards and others continued to push through the stereotypes and were successful at making snowboarding what it is today. Demographics

Burton concentrates on age and gender in deciding their target market. The core group that Burton’s target is aged 12 to 35, typically males. However, as demographics of the world changes, Burton has adapted to this and started looking at female riders and started doing more marketing to pull in both male and female riders. Demographics are always important because you want to be in touch with who will be the primary end user of your product. However, reaching outside of that target market can always open up a new area of untapped sales and widen that market beyond the limit. Technological Environment

Product placement and design is very important to Burton. Burton has used the internet and other advances that we have today to improve their snowboard equipment. Burton uses computer simulation to do virtual designs of their product and be able to tweak snowboard designs. This is a great asset to use because many times, products are produced and when they are put out there on the market, they don’t work like they should. Utilizing all of the advanced technologies will make Burton Snowboards a long-term success. Global Environment

Burton Snowboards are “innovators” and “imitators”. They are focused on consolidation of the industry. When Burton is thought of globally, they want people to first think “quality”. Burton realizes that even though their boards are not cheap, Burton wants the consumer to realize that you get what you pay for and when you purchase from Burton, you are getting a true value of unsurpassed quality. Addressing External Environmental Factors

Taking a look at Burton Snowboards website, you are able to see how they embrace the social, demographics, technological and global environment. * Extensive web page that keeps snowboarders from across the world up-to-date with all the events for the current year into 2011 * All schedules for competition, including European, Canadian, and U.S. Open schedules * Profiles of their riders which puts the face behind the sport, showing and highlighting their careers in snowboarding * Gear site link, in which you are able to shop for women, men and young children. You can shop at on-line dealers to see what is in stock. Demographics once again plays apart in this because they are marketing to not only their target market, but reaching out to upcoming snowboarders and women. Making the shopping experience separate shows that they value male and female snowboarders alike and will make their experience a unique one. * Technology at work – able to actually mix and match clothes online to see how they look before you actually purchase them (called The Great Outfitter) * People are able to not only purchase physical gift cards, but virtual gift cards which another sign of technology, in which you don’t have to have a gift card in your hand to actually use it * Team link that shows the Burton team and the upcoming season. You are actually able to “meet” the...
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