Today I’m going to be describing my experience in the 2019 Winter Market, by answering some questions that were posed in the rubric.
For the Winter Market, my group(Emma and Xeo) and I worked together to create a start-up to sell products for the sale. Our business, called Snowssentials, sold two products- Christmas trees made of teabags(Tea Trees), and hand warmers(Winterwarmers). These products were designed with warmth in mind, and were meant to be sold in the wintertime. The products we made were also easy to make, and relatively cheap to buy the materials for. Through making the products, my group and I bonded together quite a lot- we planned the creation of each product, we held surveys together, we made the products themselves together also. I would consider Emma and Xeo to be some of my closest friends, and I’m really happy to have had the opportunity to work together with them. During the sale itself, my partners and I worked our hardest to try to market our products to potential customers, and as we were able to sell out and obtain quite a sizable profit, I would say that we were successful. I can attribute all of this to our communication skills, which, incidentally, will be the core competency I will be reflecting on.
Next, I’m going to be examining my experience during the Winter Market.
Were any academic concepts utilized to reach the goal you were trying to accomplish?
Our group definitely used the academic concepts we learned in Marketing class. For the entire duration of the market, our group was constantly evolving and adapting to the market- increasing and decreasing prices, bargaining, striking deals, and so on. We learned to be fluid and flowing in the business scene and not to stay rigid and still with our prices. During the third day of the market we also introduced a new product- Hot Chocolate Trees, in order to attract more consumer interest. This ties in with one of the other questions/prompts on the rubric.
Did you need to change your approach after new information and experiences were presented to you?
The answer to this is yes. On the third day, sales were slow. This was the least profitable day of them all- thinking about it in hindsight, it may be because customers did not know about our new hot chocolate trees, and many people had already bought a Tea Tree or a Winterwarmer, so they didn’t feel the need to buy another tree. We reacted to this by changing our marketing strategy- we made sure to promote the hot chocolate trees more than the regular tea trees, in an attempt to lure customers to our stand. Evidently, this worked, because on the fourth day we made tons of sales and even sold out. We also learned to adapt in response to other businesses- shortly after introducing the tea trees, we learned that there was another hot chocolate packet seller. Once we learned this, we made sure to emphasize how much value they were getting from buying a hot chocolate tree from Snowssentials. A big part of our hot chocolate tree marketing was comparing our trees with the hot chocolate packets from the other vendor, with phrases such as, “for $5, you can buy a Hot Chocolate Tree consisting of 8-10 packets, whereas at [other seller], an individual packet would cost you $2”. We learned to adapt to not just the consumers, but to competitors in the market as well.
The final step is to articulate learning- by using responses I have just written to talk answer yet another set of questions.
What did you learn?
I learned how to interact with customers, how to make a marketing spiel, how to strategically set prices and how to market to other people. Essentially, I learned how to better communicate with others to try to convince them to buy my product, and I learned how to adapt to a changing environment(the marketplace).
How did you learn it?
I learned it through experience- through talking with potential customers and trying(sometimes rather desperately) to buy our products.
Why does it matter?
It matters, because these are skills that I will be using later in life. Knowing how to properly and appropriately talk to others and learning how to quickly adapt to a changing environment are important things to learn.
What might/should be done in the future?
In the future, I will try to use these skills more effectively. In the future I want to involve myself more in the whatever process I am using these skills in- although I did contribute towards the marketing of our product, I have to admit that I was not as active as I wanted to be, and my partners probably did more than their fair share of talking to customers. Talking to customers can be an awkward thing, and I really hate awkwardness, so on the first day I tried my best to not talk to customers. Now though, because I have more experience with this, I can guarantee that, at least, I will make an effort to speak up.