FoodFun LIS will leverage their competitive edge of combining education and entertainment within their software product to help them quickly gain market share. All of the competitors' software concentrate on skill development. While this is useful, it does not always motivate students. FoodFun has added entertaining elements into their software, encouraging the students to use the software and have fun while they learn.
FoodFun's marketing strategy will be to raise visibility of the software product among the decision makers who are in charge of purchasing aids and instructional tools. The campaign will be targeted to reach these people/organizations so that they are aware of the options they have in developing the skills of individuals with developmental disabilities. Lastly, the sales strategy will seek to convince the prospective customers that there can be significant gains in learning through FoodFun's carefully designed software.
A table with sales forecast information and charts displaying monthly and yearly sales projections follows.
FoodFun LIS' competitive edge is their clever incorporation of entertaining fun within the education software. Currently, there are several different vendors that are marketing software for this niche, however, the software is strictly educational. While this is well and good for developing skills, the students are not always that eager to use the software. FoodFun has adopted the philosophy that if they can make the education/training fun, the students will use it far more often, having fun while they are learning valuable skills.
Two different studies (not developmental disability specific studies, but the results are still applicable) have shown that if students are enjoying themselves, they will spend 2.4 times as long using the software that they perceive as fun. What this means is that the student is spending 2.4 times as long developing necessary skills when they are enjoying the software. FoodFun has incorporated entertainment aspects to their software to utilize this phenomenon.
FoodFun's marketing strategy reflects their perception of the industry: that most of the companies operating today are operated by educators; that they make nice products; but not many people know about the products, and overall awareness is poor. The reality is that so many prospective customers in the United States are unaware of the different available products. FoodFun will employ an aggressive marketing strategy to raise awareness of their products among customers who are in need of these products, and thereby increasing software purchases. FoodFun will be advertising heavily in various industry journals and magazines as a proven method of reaching the target audience. The ads will generate awareness of FoodFun LIS and will lead the customers to FoodFun's website where they can demo the software. This strategy is based on the philosophy that you can have a great product, but if no one knows about it you are not going to be successful.
FoodFun will use an aggressive sales campaign that will rely on conference participation as well as target cold calling. There are numerous industry conferences throughout the country that are specifically for educators. The conferences are the places where people get together and share strategies that work with their colleagues in different departments and different states. While the conferences are not typically packed with vendors, FoodFun LIS will be present since the conferences are a captive assortment of the right people – the educators that are in the trenches working with the special students. The conferences will be an excellent networking opportunity and should develop significant sales.
The second prong of the sales strategy will be a campaign aimed at contacting key decision makers and introducing them to FoodFun LIS and their products. Autism consultants for school districts comprise one group that will be targeted. The districts often take the consultants' recommendations when making purchasing decisions for special education. Research will be done to determine states' education districts structures to determine if it is the ESD (educational service district) that is providing the services or if the money has been given to agencies to disperse to various service providers. This information will be valuable in determining who is the proper consumer for the special software. These personal contacts will help generate significant sales.
The following table and charts present sales forecasts in a monthly format as well as yearly projections. Forecasts have been conservatively estimated to increase the likelihood of attainment. Sales has been broken down by customer group.
A fulfillment house will be contracted to produce, package, and ship the hard copy software product to purchasers. Download of the software from the FoodFun LIS website will be available. This will drastically reduce cost of goods if purchasers use the download only purchase option.
FoodFun LIS has several milestones, presented in the following table and chart, which will be instrumental in the success of the organization.