Business Law (19)
Customer Service (12)
Family Business (4)
Human Resources (27)
A small business blog featuring tips to help entrepreneurs succeed in the small business world. Topics include family business, human resources, marketing, money, networking, operations, ownership, startup, taxes and technology.
Taking Business Ques from Nintendo
By now most everyone has had an opportunity to at least try our Nintendo’s latest great invention, the Wii. As a female, I am not much of a gamer. I have one computer game that I play maybe three or four times a year, and only a couple of games on our GameCube that I played either when I was excruciatingly board, or we had company and played together (Mario Cart).
But that has changed quite a bit since we purchased a Wii at the end of August. Before, my husband would have to persuade me to play a game with him, so we could spend quality time together doing what he enjoyed. But he has to do little persuading when it comes to the Wii. Even the goofy games, like those on Wii Play, are enjoyable. Between that and Wii Sports, the whole thing is absolutely fabulous for when we have company over.
You may be wondering, at this point, what any of that has to do with business practices. Well, frankly, I think that those behind the Wii at Nintendo are business geniuses. Let’s examine what they have done with the Wii franchise and what the Wii has done for their business:
Expanding A Stagnant Demographic
The video game demographic is predominately those of the male gender, age 12 to 35. But Nintendo wanted to create something that would encompass anyone into the gaming market… and they have. They found out what it would take to get women and people of all ages to buy their product and completely regenerated a market that no one else has been able to expand.
Making the Product More Affordable
X-Box 360 runs anywhere from $350-$450 (special release models are more expensive). The new Playstation3 is typically $500. Both are for the hardware alone. Yet, despite demand for the Wii giving Nintendo the opportunity to jack up the price (they are still sold our practically everywhere, despite being released a year ago come December), the hardware typically runs $250 and comes with the Wii Sports game.
When we purchased our unit, we also purchased Wii Play (which came with an additional controller – another brilliant plan), and one other game, for a total cost of about $350. That’s less that the hardware for the X-Box 360 alone. By making the Wii more affordable, Nintendo further expands their demographic, since more people are able to afford their product than the X-Box or Playstation3.
Integrating Previous Products
As I mentioned, before purchasing the Wii, we owned a GameCube. Often, with the release of a new gaming console, this purchase simply gets added to the consumers stack of previous units, taking up space and disturbing wives everywhere.
However, the Wii has the capacity to play GameCube game, including locations for connecting GameCube controllers. Basically, it is like having two consoles in one. Which also means that we get to pawn off our GameCube and conserve precious space in our living room (inject sigh of relief here). This is another brilliant idea, as it allows Nintendo to maintain those that were previously loyal to their gaming system and, again, expand the boarders of their demographic.
While many of us don’t have a multi-million dollar business, nor the funds to spend nearly four years developing and perfecting a product, we can still learn important business practices from the folks at Nintendo. As a business owner, big or small, you should always be looking for ways to make your product more affordable without negatively effecting its quality, and integrate other aspects of your business into new products or promotions.
Among the gaming console industry, Nintendo has been around the longest, and there is clearly a reason why. Essentially, it all comes down to the fact that, everything you do should work toward expanding your target market. That is what will make your business continually successful.
Related Small Business Buzz Posts:
Knowing Your Customers
IBM’s SecureBlue Encryption
Advertising Your Product on Stage
Product Stickers and Respect
What Makes Women Entrepreneurs Different from Men?