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Ken Wong

Speaker on Marketing, Branding & Business Strategy

Bio

Speaker Ken Wong is not your typical academic. With work that has earned him the cover of Canadian Business and Strategy magazine and a place in the Canadian Marketing Hall of Legends, he is known for his energetic, entertaining and content-rich presentations. He is the Distinguished Professor of Marketing at the Smith School of Business at Queen’s University— rated by BusinessWeek magazine as the world’s number-one non-US MBA program—as well as Partner in the consulting firm, Level 5 Strategy Group. His list of clients crosses industries and size of firms from multinationals like GE, Microsoft, Starbucks and 3M to small startups and government departments and agencies at all levels.

Wong is the former Chairman of the Board for PBB Global Logistics Inc., and a member of Advisory Boards and Boards of Directors for the Canadian Marketing Association and a number of private sector and non-profit organizations

Wong has received numerous awards for his courses in strategic planning, marketing, and business strategy. Most recently, he was named an “Inductee” into the Canadian Marketing Hall of Legends and the National Posts “Leaders in Management Education”. Beyond Queen’s University, he has also taught in degree programs at Cornell University, Carleton University, Radcliffe College, and Harvard’s Continuing-Education Program, and in executive programs at York University, the University of Toronto, Dalhousie University, and the University of Alberta.

Wong writes regularly for Strategy, Canadian Grocer, and Meetings and Incentives magazines, and has served as a regular columnist for Marketing Magazine and The National Post. Ken has also written for The Financial Times, The Globe and Mail, and the Conference Board Review. His current research focuses on enhancing marketing productivity and brand profitability.

Topics

Ken Wong's Speaking Presentations:

Note: All programs are customized to include examples specific to each audience. Ken offers keynote presentations, as well as 1/2 day and full day workshops.

Marketing in a Down Economy

During a time when everyone seems to be cutting prices to stay afloat, there is new, compelling evidence of a better way. A methodology that has been shown to actually grow, not just sustain, profitability during economic downturns has been identified. This talk presents the evidence and explains why this new method works, and what it takes to get started.

Building and Managing Customer Loyalty

Consumers today are awash in loyalty programs and business customers are constantly being encouraged to be a part or a customer relationship program (CRM). However, most of these programs offer little to either customers or suppliers that cannot be generated by a more traditional promotional program. In this session, Ken reviews the economics behind loyalty programs - why and how they work. By session end, your audience will understand why it takes more than "points and software" to succeed at building and maintaining loyal customers.

Marketing for Profit
(a.k.a. Survival in a World of Margin Sucking Maggots)

Learn the four major sources of profit drain and how you can address them.

Growing Your Top Line

In a world where industry boundaries are blurring and new forms of competition are emerging, every CEO is in a constant search for business development opportunities. The hardest part of that search is distinguishing what we "could" do from what we "should" do - moving away from finding sectors where we can "play" to sectors where we should "win". In this talk, Ken reviews the necessity of finding new revenue streams and discusses the keys to finding the right opportunities. A great session for companies that want business development to be part of everyone's job and not just the CEO's.

Value-Added Marketing
Making It More Than a Hollow Promise

Learn how to augment your product or service with auxiliary features and services that not only add-value for clients but provide a basis for superior price realization or lower cost of service.

Branding, Positioning and Value Propositions
Putting Your Best Foot Forward

Learn how to present your value proposition (the six alternative basis for presenting ideas) and how to determine whether to brand at the product, category or corporate level. (Note: customized version for High Technology products and services is also available.)

Selling Change Inside and Outside the Organization
A Marketing Approach

Learn how to use the tools of new product introduction and apply them to selling change programs within your organization.

The New Marketing
How Traditional Views Hurt Progressive Firms
(2-4 hours)

Learn how and why marketing has moved from the so-called 4P's to a more integrative and interactive discipline.

Relationship Marketing
Avoiding the Hype
(4 hours)

Much has been made of the promise and potential of relationship marketing. However, recent evidence suggests that many organizations "talk" a better relationship than they provide, even though they may be spending thousands of dollars on new technology and programs. Why? Because they forget the basics: why we do it, how we do it and how we know whether it's working. Find out how to avoid the most common problems in pursuit of superior customer relations.

Innovation
More Than New Products
(4 hours)

Innovation has come to be equated with new product development. But innovation is much more, encompassing every aspect of business performance. Learn to identify areas ripe for innovation and how to promote a culture of innovation for employees.


Branding a Winner and Winning at Branding
(45-60 minutes)

A primer on the basics of branding and a case study (with videos) of the development of the McDonald's brand and how McDonald's became "a victim of its own success."


Setting and Merchandising Your Price
(team taught 8 hours)

Price is commonly seen as a means to an end: we cut prices to build volume. But for the average North American firm, we need a 4% increase in volume for every 1% reduction in price just to keep profitability at an even keel: a ratio that makes it hard to build profitable market share.


Dealing With Distributors
– Making Them True Partners
(4-8 hours)

Learn the three key distribution objectives, how to prioritize them to reflect your overall business strategy, how their relative emphasis impacts on other decisions and how deal to channel conflict.


Internal Marketing
– Getting Employee to "Buy" Your Vision and Plans

Marketing is most often associated with how we communicate and deliver value to customers. However, most organizations fail to use the same principles and concepts when communicating with their own employees. Learn how to use marketing to insure that "promises made to customers are kept by employees."


Using "Experience" to Make Differentiation Profitable

Differentiation is usually associated with brand images and creative ways of presenting product and service quality in its most appealing and unforgettable form. The reason is simple: differentiated products command premium prices. But as more and more companies pursue this pathway to profitability, the cost of finding new ways to present old messages is rising and the probability of success is falling. Learn the bases of experience-based marketing and the keys to staging experiences that resonate for both your customer and your bottom line.


Competing Against Giants
– How Smaller Firms Can Prosper

In an era where industry consolidation and mergers are creating scale-advantaged giants in almost every line of business, some smaller firms have found a way to not only survive but also prosper. Learn how to capitalize on the disadvantages that large size can bring, how to leverage the unique qualities of small scale operations and how to use organizational arrangements to reap many of the benefits of large size without sacrificing the positive aspects of being a smaller enterprise.


Staying At the Top of Your Game
(90 minutes)

Based on six years as a judge in the 50 Best Managed Companies in Canada contest, Ken looks at the characteristics of those who successfully re-qualified versus those who failed to do so. In the process, he discusses how companies can become "victims of their own success", not only through complacency but because they failed to understand the demands that growth would place upon their people, their systems and their way of doing business.


Your next BIG Thing

Ken will do a review of recent trends within your industry and search for other industries that have common characteristics. Ken will then combine that information with state-of-the-art research to present an "outsider’s view" of the challenges and opportunities that lay ahead. This program has been done in several different sectors and is especially useful to those who are trying to communicate or get "buy in" for a new strategy or vision.


Market Dynamics
(3 hours)

Strategy is about taking control. However, there are market and competitive forces that shape the nature and extent to which control can be exercised. Some of these forces are unpredictable while others emerge in a more-or-less predictable manner. Learn the predictable changes that occur over the lifetime of any product or market, the forces that make them occur, the actions that can be taken in advance of their arrival and the reactions that can used after their arrival. In addition, learn the pattern of industry financial performance that usually accompanies this evolution and see why business strategies and corporate priorities may not always mesh.


Ken Wong is represented by K&M Productions for speaking engagements. For more information and booking Ken Wong, contact us.

Testimonials

Your commentary was exactly what we needed and focused the group on some of the possibilities that exist for our businesses, particularly during a down turn in the economy. I don't think that anyone was truly connected to the financial and psychological impact that price cutting has on a business considering both current and future results. While it is easy to take that 'easy' first step on a price discount, the slippery slope leads to immediate and long term destabilization of the business model and grooms a market for commodity behaviour.

–Garland Canada

[more...]

Your commentary was exactly what we needed and focused the group on some of the possibilities that exist for our businesses, particularly during a down turn in the economy. I don't think that anyone was truly connected to the financial and psychological impact that price cutting has on a business considering both current and future results. While it is easy to take that 'easy' first step on a price discount, the slippery slope leads to immediate and long term destabilization of the business model and grooms a market for commodity behaviour.

–Garland Canada

Ken Wong elevates marketing strategy and execution to an entirely new level.

–C-COM Satellite Systems

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