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George Lemmond's Marketing Successes

Guides For Growth

Problem: Target Stores needed to clearly define its position in a crowded field, as they anticipated national expansion.

Solution: A year-long effort by top management yielded a concise document that was the basis for growth. It covered credos and standards for every aspect of the business. George Lemmond was the Director of Strategic Planning, the group that spearheaded and wrote this document.

Results: Target outlasted twelve major competitors to become the surviving "high quality" discounter. This timely and timeless blueprint has served as the company’s marching orders.

Connect with Your Customers

Problem: Chevron’s convenience store managers grow up in the oil business and don’t know much about retailing.

Solution: George Lemmond developed and piloted two-day seminars for managers of retail operations. Participants visit competitors’ stores, learn the fundamentals of merchandising, and are ingrained in the Chevron culture.

Results: This seminar was tested and held throughout the chain. The emphasis became the six steps to "Connect with Customers" —Recognize, Relate, Respond, Reward, Remember, and Repeat.

Building a Brand Through Service

Problem: Many advertisers listen to focus groups and conclude that "good service" is the main motivator for consumers’ choice.

Solution: In a speakers series that was started by George Lemmond at the national meeting of the Public Utilities Communicators Association, he concludes that service is a self-defeating premise for a company’s positioning. There are notable exceptions, but it is almost always unbelievable and undeliverable.

Results: Clients searched for more believable positions for customers’ loyalty. "A reputation for service must be earned over time. Once it is proven, it can become the culture, and after that it can become a mystique. Only then can you start to talk about it."

Eat the Client's Brands for Breakfast

Problem: Public Relations firms must grapple with ad agencies for the attention and trust of clients.

Solution: George Lemmond urged PR practitioners to fill in that void by taking personal interest in the clients’ products. He gave a keynote speech for the management of a major PR company that was adapted for a featured article in "Public Relations Journal."

Results: By eating their food, shopping at their stores, or using their services, they gained clients’ respect as bona fide, interested consumers. They earned a place at the table.

Think Like a Retailer

Problem: Newspaper sales reps don’t understand their customers business, so they are simply order takers.

Solution: A three-day seminar where they "walk in retailers’ shoes." They go out in small teams and talk to customers in stores of the chief players in a retail segment. They interview the managers or owners. Then they create a plan for one store–-as if they are its marketing department.

Results: The plans are presented to the retailers, and in most cases result in added lineage for the newspapers. These seminars have already been presented to over one thousand reps at Knight-Ridder and the Southern Newspapers Publishers Association.

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