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Three Rivers Optical Case. By Randy Clark September 18, 2012. Teaching Note. At the beginning of the presentation you should discuss the main issue(s) or question(s) to be addressed in the case. This is best to do in bullet point format.

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Three rivers optical case

Three Rivers Optical Case

By Randy Clark

September 18, 2012

Teaching note
Teaching Note

  • At the beginning of the presentation you should discuss the main issue(s) or question(s) to be addressed in the case.

  • This is best to do in bullet point format.

  • Keep in mind that most cases have multiple points to consider in fully analyzing the case.

Case purpose
Case Purpose

  • The Three Rivers Optical (TRO) case presents the trade-offs a company can make in their promotional expenditures.

  • In particular it examines the value of a trade shows as a promotional tool.

  • Many small and mid-size companies generate a significant portion of their direct sales through leads garnered at trade shows through exhibit marketing.

Teaching note1
Teaching Note

  • After introducing the main issue(s) in the case, next set up the background of the case.

  • Be sure and provide enough information from the case to make it clear to everyone what the background is. By that I mean assume no one in the class has read the case and tell us all what we need to know to understand the main issue(s).

  • Identify good ways to organize this information. Group similar things and put them in chronological order.

Three rivers optical general info
Three Rivers OpticalGeneral Info

  • Mid-size, family-owned lab that produces prescription lenses.

  • High growth from regional-based company in 1969 with a manufacturing facility of 250 square feet to a company that now has a facility of 30,000 square feet.

  • Business mission is to provide high quality, high service offerings for its loyal customers.

  • Does not pursue relationships with large chains like Wal-Mart or Sears to avoid price wars.

Three rivers optical sales force
Three Rivers OpticalSales Force

  • Conservative, heavily salesperson oriented business.

  • Conservative in hiring of new sales people until they have enough new account contracts to support the salary and some growth potential for that new hire.

  • Salespeople are often well-paid, well-supported, with existing clients, and occasionally large amounts of client workloads.

  • Use trade shows to identify information on growth potential

  • Loyal sales force that does not have to be terribly concerned with obtaining new clients on their own.

  • Believe in significant sales force training to produce knowledgeable salespeople.

  • It has over 70 employees and every customer service personnel member has completing all 80 hours of industry-specific training.

Three rivers optical territories
Three Rivers OpticalTerritories

  • Current

    • Western Pennsylvania, Central Pennsylvania, Northeastern Ohio

    • West Virginia, Northwestern Virginia, Northern Virginia, and part of Eastern Ohio

    • The rest of Ohio

    • Northern Wisconsin, Upper Peninsula Michigan

    • North and South Carolina

    • Alabama, Eastern Mississippi, South Georgia

    • Maryland, District of Columbia, Eastern Virginia

    • East Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Northern Delaware

    • New England

  • Expected Growth in Western Ohio, Indiana, North Michigan, and Central Michigan

Three rivers optical management structure
Three Rivers OpticalManagement Structure

  • Family business run by three siblings.

  • Each siblings has their own specific specialty.

    • Steve is responsible for Sales and Marketing

    • Joe is Director of Operations

    • Mary Ann is the Controller

Three rivers optical product differentiation
Three Rivers OpticalProduct Differentiation

  • TRO has specific products that they have developed that set them apart from many other labs.

  • TRO Discovery lens – type of bifocal lens that appeals to an audience that does not want to wear lined bifocals.

  • Design allows for a gradual movement from one lens specification level to another.

  • This lens appeals to older population and doctors serving a pediatric market.

Three river optical customers
Three River OpticalCustomers

  • The target audience for TRO consists of three types:

  • Ophthalmologists

    • Medical doctors that provide medical treatment of eye issues.

    • Have medical degrees and can treat eye disorders.

    • In the past rarely fit patients in lenses but now do using this as a new profit center for their business.

  • Optometrists

    • Not medical doctors – cannot conduct surgery

    • Have post graduate professional degrees.

    • Conduct eye examinations, diagnose eye problems, and prescribe corrective lenses.

    • Also sell and fit corrective lenses.

  • Opticians

    • Fill prescriptions and fit corrective lenses.

    • Does not require graduate education but academic training.

    • Dying breed

  • Also some schools and hospitals have eye services as part of their practices.

Teaching note2
Teaching Note

  • It is important to provide any important charts, tables or graphs when presenting the information.

  • When doing this, don’t simply copy the entire figure. If only a few numbers or a few pieces of information are important pull those out and present them.

Case outcomes
Case Outcomes

  • Two-fold

    • Determine the value of trade shows as a promotional tool

    • Identify a plan to maximize the trade show dollars

Teaching note3
Teaching Note

  • After stating the relevant information in the case go back and restate the main issue(s) or question(s).

  • You can state these as alternative actions at this point (i.e. “keep attending trade shows versus not attending trade shows”).

  • From this point the remainder of the presentation should be about your group’s decisions on these alternatives and the information that supports that decision.

Outcome value of trade shows
Outcome: Value of Trade Shows

  • Mostly business marketing promotional tool.

  • Useful because it provides a mechanism to build prospect lists.

  • Also has a high degree of credibility due to the face-to-face nature.

  • Expected to continue to be an important promotional tool for a number of years.

In class assignment
In Class Assignment

In the Three Rivers Optical Case, are trade shows a good option for TRO to generate (1) sales, (2) sales leads, and (3) new customer relationships? Why or why not for each?

Outcome value of trade shows1
Outcome: Value of Trade Shows

  • Valuable for TRO due to the direct sales nature which provides an effective means to begin a relationship.

  • Also useful to build a prospect list for the salesforce to maximize their sales potential.

  • Finally the company has been successful generating future sales using trade shows in the past. While sales cannot happen on the floor, the early stages of relationship development can happen.

Teaching note4
Teaching Note

  • Be sure to be thorough in stating your recommendations.

  • Include relevant data to help make your points more strongly.

Outcomes maximizing trade show potential
Outcomes: Maximizing Trade Show Potential

  • Too often marketers engaged in trade show marketing focus on the flash with no substance.

  • A detailed strategic plan keeps the focus where it needs to be.

  • A focus group strategic plan must work with the organizational marketing plan to achieve success for the company.

Basic strategic plan outline for tro
Basic Strategic Plan Outline for TRO

  • Situational Analysis

  • Target Audience(s).

  • Research & Knowledge

  • Measurable Goals and Objectives

  • Strategic Tactics

  • Integration with Other Marketing Tools

  • Pre-show/at-show Promotion

  • Exhibit design

  • Follow-up

  • Measure Results

  • Post-show Evaluation

Strategic plan details part 1
Strategic Plan Details (Part 1)

  • Situational Analysis

    • TRO is a solid company with consistent growth and the ability to expand the number of customers it serves.

    • Sales come primarily from east of the Mississippi.

    • TRO looking to expand west of the Mississippi.

    • Marketing consists of trade shows, journal advertising, and direct sales.

    • Several proprietary products.

  • Target Audience(s).

    • Ophthalmologists, practicing and residents, pediatric practices

    • Optometrists

    • Opticians

    • Ophthalmic Medical Personnel

    • Ophthalmological Assistant (non-certified)

Strategic plan details part 2
Strategic Plan Details (Part 2)

  • Research & Knowledge

    • Who will attend the event – potential customers?

    • Who is exhibiting at the event – potential competitors/suppliers/partners?

    • Are other companies like ours exhibiting – direct competitors?

  • Measurable Goals and Objectives

    • Research from CEIR states that a staff person will speak with 7-15 people per active hour.

    • Not all hours at a show are active with high traffic.

    • A formula often used is: number of staff people per shift x number of show hours x 5.

    • Trade shows previously attended can be evaluated for their results

    • TRO usually rents a 10’ x 20’ space and brings five staff people to work a show.

  • Strategies and Tactics – how will you promote your presence at the show and attract the correct audience?

  • Pre-show direct marketing should drive the appropriate audience at the event.

    • Display advertising drives customer visits - focus should be on new design and current technology.

    • Contests generate excitement among prospective customers.

    • Schedule appointments with existing customers and prospects when appropriate.

    • Use coupons for samples of proprietary products to help generate sales.

    • Seminar participation help customers view us as an educational information source.

Strategic plan details part 3
Strategic Plan Details (Part 3)

  • Integration with Other Marketing Tools

    • Maintain focus on the technology and the unique product mix.

    • Reinforce the direct sales by creating prospective customer lists.

    • Reinforce brand recognition in the journal advertisements.

  • Pre-show/at-show Promotion

    • Each show should be tailored to the specific audience.

    • Current local customers should be contacted before show.

  • Exhibit design – must emphasize unique design. Need to constantly update the look and theme of the exhibit.

Strategic plan details part 4
Strategic Plan Details (Part 4)

  • Follow-up

    • A successful trade show is generate extensive prospect lists.

    • Marketing efforts must be.

    • Involve and train your staff.

  • Measure Results

    • Evaluate costs versus the number of prospective customers identified.

    • Specific trade show goals should be evaluated.

    • Long term measures of customer adoption should be evaluated to identify the impact of trade show contacts after they have been cultivated.

  • Post-show Evaluation

    • Was the show worth doing?

    • What went right and what went wrong?

    • How can we improve for the next event?

Teaching notes
Teaching Notes

  • Be sure to finish the presentation with a questions slide.

  • You can incorporate question points throughout the case also.

  • For example in this case I could have said “Should TRO keep attending trade shows?” right after I presented the case background information.

  • Also be sure to include at least one specific question somewhere in the case to be used as the inclass assignment that day.

  • Any case that does not include this will receive a reduced presentation grade.