Designing a Customer-Driven Strateg y and Mix
Progressive has attained top-tier status in the insurance industry by focusing on innovation. Progressive was the first company to offer drive-in claims services, installment payment of premiums, and 24/7 customer service. But some of Progressive's most innovative moves involve its channels of distribution. Whereas most insurance companies distribute their products to consumers via intermediary agents or direct-to-consumer methods, Progressive was one of the first companies to recognize the value in doing both. In the late 19805, it augmented its agency distribution with a direct toll-free-number channel.
In 1995, Progressive moved into the future by becoming the
first major insurer in the world to launch a Web site. In 1997, customers could buy auto insurance policies online in real time.
1. Apply the concept of the supply chain to Progressive.
2. Using the model of consumer and business channels found in the chapter, sketch out as many channels for Progressive as
you can. How does each of these channels meet distinct
3. Discuss the various ways that Progressive has had an impact on the insurance industry.
Zara: The Technology Giant of
the Fashion World
One global retailer is expanding at a dizzying pace. It's on track for what appears to be world domination of its industry. Having built its own state-of-the art distribution network, the company is leaving the competition in the dust in terms of sales and profits, not to mention speed of inventory management and turnover. Wal-Mart you might think? Dell possibly? Although
these two retail giants definitely fit the description, we're talking here about Zara, the flagship specialty cha in of Spain-based clothing conglomerate, Inditex.
This dynamic retailer is known for selling stylish designs that resemble those of big-name fashion houses, but at moderate
prices. "We sell the latest trends at low prices, but our clients value our design, quality, and constant innovation," a company spokesman said. "That gives us the advantage even in highly
competitive, developed markets, including Britain." More interesting is the way that Zara achieves its mission.
Today, at Progressive's Web site, customers can do everything from managing their own account information to reporting
claims directly. Progressive even offers one-stop concierge claim service.
After viewing the Progressive video, answer the following
questions about marketing channels:
A handful of European specialty clothing retailers are taking the fashion world by storm with a business model that has come to be known as "fast-fashion." In short, these companies can recognize and respond to fashion trends very quickly, create products that mirror the trends, and get those products onto shelves much faster and more frequently than the industry norm. Fastfashion retailers include Sweden's Hennes & Mauritz (H&M), Britain's Top Shop, Spain's Mango, and the Netherland's Mexx. Although ali of these companies are successfully employing the fast-fashion concept, Zara leads the pack on virtually every level. For example, "fast" at Zara means that it can take a produet from concept through design, manufacturing, and store-shelf
placement in as little as two weeks, much quicker than any of its fast-fashion competitors For more mainstream clothing chains, the process takes months.
This gives Zara the advantage of virtually copying fashions
from the pages of Vogue and having them on the streets in
dozens of countries before the next issue of the magazine even
hits the newsstands! When Spain's Crown Prince Felipe and
Letizia Ortiz Rocasolano announced their engagement, the brideto-be wore a stylish white trouser suit. This raised some eyebrows, given that it violated royal protocol. But European women loved it and within a few weeks, hundreds of them were...