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Thread: Market Disruptions Thread (aka Millennials ruin EVERYTHING!)

  1. #21
    'Trep dodint's Avatar
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    There are some Family Video locations around western PA. The joke is that they're likely a mob front because there can't be enough movie rental revenue happening to support a retail establishment. Even my parents, who still rent physical movies, do so from Red Box.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by dodint View Post
    ...Someone gave me a Sports Authority gift card last year. I used it immediately, online, before they could go out of business.
    You should be able to cash gift cards out at banks ATMs (they may charge a few bucks, but your not forced to shop at that specific store)

  3. #23
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    That only works with generic gift cards, like Visa or AmEx. Not with store-branded gift cards like Sports Authority. Store branded cards only exist within the ecosystem of that store. I believe it is a Federal law (could be a California state law, but I don't think so) that requires a store cash you out of a store gift card with a value <$10, except in the case of gift cards issued by telephone companies... because they have a great lobby. If you do have a Visa or AmEx gift card, two "hacks" you can use to cash them out are Google Wallet and Amazon. I turn all my little MC/AE cards into Amazon gift cards immediately.

  4. #24
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    The thing all these legacy companies have in common is a failure to stay dynamic, to keep in touch with consumers and ahead of their changing needs and desires. Sears could have leveraged a physical presence and built an easy to navigate site with easy checkout and affordable shipping, but they waited too long. Blockbuster could have put their stock online in 1998 so you wouldn't waste a trip to the strip mall only to find the one movie you wanted was gone. The record industry could have done something other that pump one hit wonders while simultaneously killing single sales while simultaneously rejecting the lesson that Napster was teaching them about instant gratification. Traditional taxi companies could have hired better operators and offered guarantees that a ride would show up on time and take effective routes. Travel companies could have simply advertised low rates and built their brands rather teaching consumers to use 3rd parties (first travel agents, then aggregators like Expedia) to get the good rates and guarantees.

    I think customer service is important, but people will take a LOT of abuse to get a good price. Walmart is still gigantic. It's not all price. They will often pay more if it's easy. iTunes is rarely the cheapest way to buy an album. You gotta wrap up ease of use, customer service, price, and perceived value (which might include things like brand, image, quality, etc.) into one package make it all easy to use and make it cool. All of these legacy businesses had YEARS to look and see where consumers were frustrated and make changes; often they had years while their disruptor was already in play; sometimes they actively fought the disruption and asserted their legacy. For big companies, change is often difficult because it requires abandoning years of carefully built infrastructure and a simultaneous investment in something new or poorly understood. Sometimes, the damage to the brand or concept is too great and recovery was probably never possible - Sears might be an example of that. They failed to latch onto "boutique branding" back in the '90s... their business got disrupted by Gap Brands, Inc. Kodak might be another - they had most of the patents essential to early digital photography, they knew it was coming, but couldn't figure out how to get buyers to trust their brand for digital - consumers looked towards electronic giants instead.

    The goal is always satisfy the customer. Sometimes that's the lowest price. Sometimes that's the easiest transaction. Sometimes that's the best product. Most often, it's a combination, with a liberal amount of perception sprinkled in. I would throw out LA Gear as an example. After the '80s nobody gave a shit about LA Gear. But people *still* buy a lot of Sketchers. Dealing with consumers is about being dynamic, and relying on what you did yesterday to get you through tomorrow isn't the same safe bet it was in the '50s. That decade changed everything - it's just that it took all these years for technology to give Davids the ability to take on the Goliaths and/or all these years for the loss of these big industries' momentum to finally catch up. This whole "disruption" thing makes it seems like this all happened overnight. It's been happening for decades.

  5. #25
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    For the Americans looking for tailored shirts this is a decent option https://propercloth.com I get mine done in Bangkok, I'd agree with YW.

    I'm spending a lot of time in the future of transport space atm as I see car ownership rapidly declining over the next 10 years or so. Have to dash right now but rather than purchasing cars I see people purchasing mobility and moving to a pay for use model. Won work everywhere but between electric cars, autonomous cars and connected cars the transport industry is about to cop a massive disruption (not sure about the millennial aspect though, it's mostly gen x and y doing the disruption)

  6. #26
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    Propercloth looks promising for the Yanks.

    Transport space I 100% agree. I'd probably book a "Toyota taxi" to take me to/from work almost all of the time.

    George, if it makes you feel better, almost no shirts are made in HK anymore. The ones that I do get, from Bonham Strand (a social enterprise trying to protect HK tailoring), cost me around USD120-150, but at least I can meet the tailor in the shop. Unless you buy from them, almost everything else is made across the border, no matter what the suit touts say. Not that the quality from stuff across the border is necessarily bad for the price. For my sister's wedding we all got (half-canvas even) suits and shirts made with good lining. They all look good, and the total cost was only USD295. That said, they are certainly not perfect, and we are all taking bets on how many times they'll last before they fall apart.

  7. #27
    Recreational Gynecologist MR2 Fan's Avatar
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    Update on the Grocery disruption, Amazon and Whole Foods:

    https://techcrunch.com/2017/08/28/wh...ocery-staples/
    ║]=(86)=[║

  8. #28
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    Quite frankly, I don't get what Amazon is trying to do...

    So they bought BMW, but try to lower prices to Honda levels. Disruptive, yes, but why?

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crazed_Insanity View Post
    Quite frankly, I don't get what Amazon is trying to do...

    So they bought BMW, but try to lower prices to Honda levels. Disruptive, yes, but why?
    I think it's a marketing thing for now, get more people in the door and used to going to whole foods, then they'll try to get their prime members to shop exclusively there and then get deliveries.

    Whole Foods recently had issues with price gouging which is why their stock price had gone down
    ║]=(86)=[║

  10. #30
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    Amazon's angle on buying whole foods is that they're trying to really get into the shipping groceries business. Very simply, selling "fresh" foods is very different and specialized compared to most other retail models. Retailers and suppliers have functionally different relationships - in most other products, if a shipment shows up 2 days late, it'll piss the retailer off but not substantially reduce the value of the end product and if it's two days early, they might be annoyed and have to shift some stuff around, but it's really no big thing at all. Also, one trailer full of cameras or books is pretty much exactly the same as another.
    OTOH, with things like produce and meat, knowing that you'll get your shipments to exactly the right place at the exactly right time is way more important, and the entirety of the value of the final product hinges on that. Further, 1 trailer of tomatos might be nearly a completely different product from another - smaller, larger, riper or less ripe, etc.
    Because of this, it can be surmised that amazon is buying whole foods for their relationships with and knowhow about suppliers and the basics of the grocery business.
    -Formerly Stabulator

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