What is this service offering?

We generate market insights and devise competitive strategy leading to improved competitive position, increased profitability, and accelerated growth.

Who might need this service?

Primarily manufacturing/industrial and product companies. Examples of types of companies we have worked with in this area: industrial safety products, metal products, major appliances, specialty glass products, medical equipment, and many others.

How do we do this? What deliverables might we provide?
Market Segmentation and Targeting strategy
We develop a map that defines meaningful market segments and describes them in terms of size and growth; drivers and trends; product wants and needs; purchasing behavior; and the competitive landscape. This segmentation allows companies to make strategic choices, such as:

  • Targeting the most attractive target segments (eg segments with the highest growth potential or where you have the greatest competitive advantage)
  • Developing product and service plans that leverage your strategic advantages in target segments
  • Developing effective segment-specific selling, marketing and branding strategies
Sharpened Value Proposition
A well understood value proposition is the foundation of sound strategic decisions in all facets of a business, including the selection of attractive target markets, product and service offerings and product development, marketing and branding strategies, prioritization of resources and investments, and identification of growth opportunities. We help firms to identify sources of strategic advantage and differentiation, and to articulate clearly why customers should buy from them versus competitors.
Assessment of the Impact of Key Trends
Dramatic shifts in the competitive landscape (eg rise of cheap imports or disruptive technological advancements) can weaken or negate sources of differentiation and advantage. To remain competitive, firms must adapt to the evolving environment. We offer market intelligence and an assessment (based on an objective, outside perspective) of the impact of global and industry trends on a firm’s competitive position.
Strategic Facilitation
Based on years of experience in facilitating collaborative processes that yield valuable insights, innovative thinking, and effective decision-making, we offer customized and structured strategic thinking support.
Export/International Growth Strategy and Planning
Why Stone & Associates?

We have a track record of generating critical observations about market segmentation that illuminates strategic opportunities. Our segmentation frameworks have pointed to new product plans, value-added service offerings, key partnerships, and changes in marketing strategy.

In part, this is because our team has an unusual combination of skills — combining in-depth market analysis, competitive intelligence and strategy, and a sophisticated understanding of cost structure and economic drivers — that sets us apart from management consulting and research firms with narrow ranges of experience. In addition, all of our team members have at least 20 years of broad consulting experience and/or have been company executives or owners.

We also have a deep understanding of small and mid-size manufacturing and product businesses, based on our unmatched experience in conducting research on the needs, behavior and competitive position of SMMs, through dozens of projects with the US Department of Commerce. (NIST/MEP and Commercial Service).

Project Examples
  • Business Devt – Open Ocean Aquaculture
  • New Market Devt – Metal Fabrication Co
  • Business Strategy Devt – Major Appliance Mfr
  • Business Strategy Devt –Specialty Glass Mfr
  • Market and Competitive Research – Metal Component Supplier
  • Marketing Strategy – Medical Eqt Mfr; Spring/Wire Mfr
  • Market Assessment and Strategy Devt – Telecomm. Eqt Distributor
  • OEM Market Assessment – Glass Product Mfr
  • European Market Strategy Based on Logistics – Major Appliance Mfr
  • Competitive Assessment – Plastic Products Mfr
  • Strategic Analysis of Competitor Costs- Multiple
  • Evaluation of JV Partners – Telecomm. Products Mfr
  • Strategy Development – Safety Products Mfr
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