Retractable Pool Cue Final Project

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Retractable Pool Cue Final Project

  1. 1. The Retractable Pool Cue © Cool Cues Incorporated
  2. 2. Table of Context I. Executive Summary…………………….………..Page 3 II. Introduction……………………………………Pages 4& 5 III. Situational Analysis…………………………...Pages 6& 7 IV. Analysis of Target Market……………………….Page 8 V. Competition……………………………………Pages 9-12 VI. Marketing Objectives…………………………….Page 13 VII. Marketing Strategies………………………...Page 14 & 15 VIII. Conclusion………………………………………..Page 16
  3. 3. Executive Summary Cool Cue Incorporated, based out of Boston, MA, has come up with the next new product idea to enhance the game of billiards, the Retractable Pool Cue. The cue has a red button on the butt of the cue, placed inside of the bumper, which if held will retract the shaft. The feature that makes this product unique is the retractable motion of the shaft into the butt. This is possible because of a lever connecting the shaft to the butt, inside of the cue. When the button is held, the level retracts, bringing the shaft into the butt. Once the shot is finished, the shooter can press the button to allow the lever to return to its original state, allowing the shaft to extend fully. Cool Cues Incorporated’s product is different from all other pool cues available in the world because it is the only Retractable Pool Cue on the market today available throughout the entire world. Our competition has set the bar high, but with the Retractable Pool Cue, Cool Cue Incorporated is ready to take the next step. Cool Cue Incorporated has planned for the future by providing a list of financial needs as well as a projected profit for the up and coming product. These numbers will be examined throughout this marketing plan on the newest pool product to hit the market, the Retractable Pool Cue.
  4. 4. Introduction Cool Cue Incorporated has come up with the next new product idea to enhance the game of billiards, the Retractable Pool Cue. The cue has a red button on the butt of the cue, placed inside of the bumper, which if held will retract the shaft into the butt of the cue. The player will hold the button until the shaft is at the appropriate length for the shot at hand. Once the shot is finished, the person playing simply has to push the red button once again for it to return to the original size. Of course, Cool Cue Incorporated did not begin with this exact idea, it took a lot of research as a well as testimonials to finalize our product, the Retractable Pool Cue. The beginning of this third proposal will examine the steps Cool Cue Incorporated took to think up the initial concept of the Retractable Pool Cue as well as the improvement that have been made to the product over time. When our research team first thought of the idea, it was a very rough idea with many problems. The initial concept of the Retractable Pool Cue was simple a pool cue that could go up and down for specific shots. The research team had many ideas on how we could make it so the pool cue could retract up and down, ranging from impossible to intelligent. Some of these ideas were to have the pool cue spin up and down, but that would mean the player would have to manually perform this, thus taking time away from the game, which is the simple issue we are trying to eliminate. Another idea was to have the cue made so the shaft could be pushed into the butt by one’s hand. This idea failed simple because if one shot the cue ball to hard, the shaft could retract and either pause the game or mess up the persons shot. Then, an incredible idea was developed, and it is the one we ran with. The idea was to put either a spring of a level inside of the shaft, so the motion could be controlled and the location of the shaft could be the choice of the player. The idea also featured another part, a button on the bottom of the butt to control the retracting motion. Now that the initial concept had been laid out, the next step was to research the actual dimensions of the cue. For this, our research team dug deeply into internet article as well as billiards books to find the correct dimensions for our product. Once the research was finished and the raw dimensions were laid out, Cool Cue Incorporated was forced to make a choice. Do we go with the everyday dimensions, or do we stray away from the norm and go in our own direction? The decision was tough, but in the end, Cool Cue Incorporated decided to stick with what has worked in the past and design the Retractable Pool Cue according to the dimensions of past pool cues. The dimensions of this cue are very close to those of other cues. The full length is 57 inches, the weight is 19 ounces and the tip size is 13mm. Our cues will also feature a tip made out of leather, the ferrule (which protects the cue shaft from breaking by absorbing the impact from the cue ball) will be made of impact-resistant plastic or bone. The Shaft of the cue will be made out of wood coated in fiberglass, the joint will be made out of metal, and the butt will be made out of wood, wrapped in leather to improve the grip on the handle.
  5. 5. These dimensions are not exactly the same as other pool cues, but they are based of the research found by our research team. Every aspect for the dimensions of this pool cue were carefully research to give the pool player a more enjoyable game of pool. Well Cool Cue Incorporated was thinking of making a new cue, our team suggested we design a product that appeals to the true pool players of the world, the ones who play recreationally. We realize these people do not make huge impact in this game, but without them, the game would not have even started. This is why our product, the Retractable Pool Cue, is designed for the regular pool player. To answer a simple question, who wants to waste time changing sticks just to complete one shot? With the Retractable Pool Cue, that problem is gone. The feature that makes this product unique is the retractable motion of the shaft into the butt. This is possible because of a lever connecting the shaft to the butt, inside of the cue. When the button is held, the level retracts, bringing the shaft into the butt. Once the shot is finished, the shooter can press the button to allow the lever to return to its original state, allowing the shaft to extend fully. Or product is different from all other pool cues available in the world because it is the only Retractable Pool Cue on the market today available throughout the entire world. Remember, the Retractable Pool Cue will be on the market soon, and if you are debating whether it will help you or not, just remember our slogan, “Why scratch it, when you can retract it.”
  6. 6. Situational Analysis To begin this situational analysis for the Retractable Pool Cue, Cool Cue Incorporated has included a SWOT Analysis for the new product. This SWOT Analysis consists of the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threat of the Retractable Pool Cue. a. Strengths - The only Retractable pool cue available on the market today. - A target market consisting of only recreational pool players. - The first pool cue designed specifically for those playing recreational pool. b. Weaknesses - A product geared towards recreational pool players, not professionals. - A new company entering a pool market that is very well established. - The name of our product is not established yet, which could hinder sales against other leading pool cues. c. Opportunities - New retractable motion of our product will attract new consumers. - Set a standard for new technological advances in the billiards field. - Setting the bar for new types of pool cues entering the market in the future. d. Treats - The competition that the Retractable Pool Cue is going up against. - The target market not taking advantage of the new technology, and staying with the older, original pool cues. Besides the SWOT Analysis, the Situational Analysis also examines the demographics gathered through research for the Retractable Pool Cue, and the economic climate. Some Demographics that were gathered are featured below:
  7. 7. The first of the two graphs on is the buying cycle of billiards equipment since 1995 and the second is the total participation in billiards since 1994. The second graph which is based on the participation in billiards every year clearly shows more people playing billiards every year. Both of these graphs aid our company, because they both show that new pool equipment is needed and there is an abundance of people ready to use new equipment, such as the Retractable Pool Cue. The third demographic our research team gathered was from a company named On The Wire, Inc. a company dedicated to promoting Billiard Sports. The survey is based on 6,000 people that had attended their website in 2006. The information gathered from this site aided Cool Cues Incorporated in the finalization of the target market for the Retractable Pool Cue. Some of the information that was gathered was: • 89% are male, 11% are female • 94% play weekly, 6% play monthly • 67% plan to participate in a tournament in the next 12 months • 51% would like to take lessons in the next 12 months • 96% plan new equipment purchases, from tables to cues, instructional materials to accessories • 76% play 8-ball • 54% play 9-ball • 31% are aged 18-35 • 32% have household incomes over $75,000 per year. The issue concerning the economic climate is going to be examined through time. Since the Retractable Pool Cue is just coming on the market, time will need to take its toll before Cool Cues Incorporated knows how the product will fair during these times. The biggest economic climate that the Retractable Pool Cue will be involved in is the first market penetration.
  8. 8. Analysis of Target Market Before anything else, let our company explain the target market that will be utilized in the launch of the Retractable Pool Cue. The Target Market that our company, Cool Cue Incorporated is advertising towards is recreational pool players ages 21-26. We have chosen this particular market for many reasons. The characteristics of this market are easily seen. These are people going into bars and billiard rooms to shoot casual pool. These are the kind of people who are willing to give our product a chance, since professional pool players are not allow to change sticks, so our product would not appeal to them. Our product would be great for men and women pool players in clubs, bars or even there own homes. This particular target market is shown in the following demographic: • Males ages 21-26 • Play Billiards on a weekly basis • Recreational Pool Players • Household income above $50,000 • Willingness to buy new billiards equipment For the last segment of this market analysis, Cool Cue Incorporated will approach Market Segmentation. This is simply put one market, one product. In our cases, this is Men recreational pool players ages 21-26, the Retractable Pool Cue. The market also has four requirements Cool Cue Incorporated must meet, these requirement are: 1) People must need or want our product. 2) People in the market must have the ability to purchase our product. 3) People in the market must be willing to use their buying power. 4) People in the market must have the authority to buy specific products. After through research, Cool Cue incorporated has established answers to all of these questions: 1) After a survey and many studies, Cool Cue incorporated research teams have found that 96% plan new equipment purchases, from tables to cues, instructional materials to accessories. 2) With the Retractable Pool Cue costing $230, the target market Cool Cue Incorporated is targeting is players with a household income above $50,000 3) The target market for the Retractable Pool Cue is men ages 21-26 and 96% of these men are willing to buy new equipment. 4) Since the target market for the Retractable Pool Cue is men ages 21-26, these men are adult and can freely choose what to do with their money
  9. 9. Competition Cool Cue Incorporated is fully aware of the competitive forces at work in the current marketplace. The first part that will be examined is the competition to Cool Cue Incorporated. Besides the actually competitor list, this part will also feature the profile list of each of the competitors. In this list, such information will be included: name of the company, the location of the company, the main product of the company as well as other information. First off, the list of competitors will be examined. The competitor profile list is arranged in the following order: Viking Pool Cue, McDermott Pool Cues, and Pechauer Pool Cues. Let’s start off with examining the profile for Viking Pool Cues. Viking Pool Cues was established in 1960 by a man named Gordon Hart. Hart made two- piece pool cues in his basement before establishing a company in Madison, Wisconsin. The name of this new company was Viking. The company grew steadily through the 1970s and 1980s. Then, in 1986 the major motion picture, The Color of Money, which starred Paul Newman and Tom Cruise, was released and created a boom in the billiard industry. Sales of Viking cues skyrocketed, and the company experienced phenomenal growth as a result. In today’s world, Viking is known for its generous support of various tournaments and organizations. The next competitor on the list is McDermott Pool Cues. McDermott has become one of the most recognized and respected names in the billiard world. Maker of pool cues from 1975 to present in Menomonee Falls Wisconsin. It all started when Jim McDermott was repairing cues in the mid-1960s at his home in the Milwaukee. Jim would regularly travel to all of the local bars and pool rooms, picking up and delivering the cues he repaired. It was in 1966 that Jim met master cue maker Rollie Welch and worked with him for several years. The first official line of McDermott cues was introduced in 1975, all ten of which featured the now-famous McDermott interchangeable weight bolt system that has appeared on almost all McDermott cues produced since then. Although many collectors and players refer to these as the A-line due to the later alphabetical progression, they were actually called the M/R Line at the time. These cues all featured the McDermott flat faced, wood-to-wood joint, and had color coordinated bumpers. McDermott is now in the process of making several different series of cues. The third competitor in this list is Pechauer Pool Cues. Over 30 years ago, Jerry Pechauer worked on his first pool cue. Since repairing that old pool cues in the basement of his home as a young man, Jerry earned a living and a world renowned reputation for producing some of the finest pool cues available today. Jerry always took pride in knowing that each of the cues he hand-crafted was of the highest quality. Today, Jerry and his son Joe now play an active role in the hand-crafting process that each cue receives to insure the J. Pechauer quality, craftsmanship, and tradition lives on.
  10. 10. Now that Cool Cue Incorporated has listed each of the main competitors we are facing off against, the next objective is to talk about the products that these specific companies produce, in comparison to the Retractable Pool Cue. First off, Viking Pool Cues will be examined. Viking Cues offers more than 100 different models each one a work of art. Some of the models that are available are the following: F00-F09, F10-F19, F20-F29, F30-F39, F40-F49, F50-F59, F60-F69, F70-F79, F80-F89, F90-F98, F100-F111 (DeCues), F112 (Break-Jump Cue). All of these cues are rarely made with metal or steel dowel pins to hold the wood pieces of a butt together. Instead, Viking utilizes a more reliable, natural way of constructing the butts of our cues by finger jointing the wood pieces of a butt together. Finger jointing the pieces of the butt improves the structural integrity and playability while further assuring straightness. Viking seasons (condition) their wood over an extended period of time (usually 12 to 24 months) in a climate-controlled environment to insure straightness. This way of producing cues may work for Viking, but it just does not compare to the new system of the Retractable Pool Cue. Next up is the cues from McDermott. The following are the cues that are available via McDermott Pool Cues. Still, in comparison to the Retractable Pool Cue, McDermott is just another company that focuses on the regular two-piece pool Cue. Just like the previous two competitors, Pechauer Pool Cues are focused on two- piece pool cues. Another fact that these three companies have in common that sets them far apart from Cool Cue Incorporated and the Retractable Pool Cue is that each of these companies are focused on professional pool players. Although the Retractable Pool Cue is the only of its kind on the market, Cool Cue Incorporated must still compare themselves to the elite in Billiards. These three companies are still the competition when it comes to the selling of the cues. This last chart examines the advantage each of the four companies/products have compared to each other. This is known as the Competitive Edge and the subsections of this Competitive Edge are examined more closely below. Retractable Pool Viking McDermott Pechauer Cue Product Superiority- X X X Price Advantage- X Market Advantage- X Participants Facilities- X X X
  11. 11. Product Superiority- Viking, McDermott and Pechauer were selected for the Product Superiority since these companies have been on the billiards market since the early 1970’s. With a companies name out on the market for so long, the market is going to be more willing to buy there products before any others. Along with Cool Cue Incorporated just coming on to the scene, the advantage must go to Viking, McDermott and Pechauer for the superiority in the Billiards market. What hurt the Retractable Pool Cue in this subsection is the inexperience of the target market towards the product as well as the immaturity of Cool Cue Incorporated. This subsection could very well be different in a couple of years. Price Advantage- The Price Advantage went in the direction of the Retractable Pool Cue for this subsection of the Competitive edge. The Retractable Pool Cue is priced at $230, brand new on the market. The pricing edge went towards the Retractable Pool Cue simply because the other competitors have price ranges that exceed that of the Retractable Pool Cue. For instance, Viking Pool Cues price their merchandise from $400 – over $1000 per cue. McDermott Pool Cues can be purchased in the range of $139 - $1360, with most of the cues in the over $250 range. Lastly, Pechauer Pool Cues have a range of $240 - $3000 for specific cues. As one can clearly see, the Retractable Pool Cue is the only cue that is consistently $230, which is why the price advantage went to the Retractable Pool Cue. Market Advantage- The Market Advantage also went to the Retractable Pool Cue. The logic for this decision is simple, since the Retractable Pool Cue is the only one out of these four that is geared towards the recreational market. Although Viking, McDermott and Pechauer Pool Cues can be purchased for recreational use, the Retractable Pool Cue is the only cue that is designed especially for the game of recreational billiards. Participants Facilities- When this subsection was determined, the decision went to Viking, McDermott and Pechauer. The reason for this decision was again the experience factor of the companies. With the age of each company contributing, more people/participants will be linked to these pool cues. Each of these companies also specializes in professional pool, so if one were to be advertised by a professional, the participation in the sales of these companies would boost. Cool Cue Incorporated made the Retractable Pool Cue for those who play pool for enjoyment, which could be a large factor in this subsection. Cool Cue Incorporated is confident though that participation in their company will increase once more people see the advantage of the Retractable Pool Cue.
  12. 12. Management Strengths- This subsection was not included in the competitive edge checklist. This section will examine the strengths of Viking, McDermott and Pechauer Pool Cues against those of the Retractable Pool Cue. Viking Pool Cues are known for there reliable, natural way of constructing the butts of our cues by finger jointing the wood pieces of a butt together. Finger jointing the pieces of the butt improves the structural integrity and playability while further assuring straightness. Viking seasons condition their wood over an extended period of time in a climate-controlled environment to insure straightness. Also, Viking is known as one of the best pool cues available for professional pool players. McDermott Pool Cues are also world-renown as some of the best pool cues available for professional billiards players. McDermott cues are two-piece cues, which are one of the most popular kinds around the world. Lastly, McDermott cues are advertised by some of the biggest names in billiards today. Pechauer Pool Cues are again a large name in billiards that most people have heard of. Pechauer cues are different, since each cue is designed specifically, and no two cues are the exact same. With that simple fact, Pechauer is able to sell their cues for a much larger price, and each cue can be custom made for each costumer. The Retractable Pool Cue from Cool Cue Incorporated is the only cue on the market that is able to change lengths with the touch of a button. The Retractable Pool Cue has the ability to retract the shaft of the cue into the butt via a lever inside of the cue for short range shorts, without having to change sticks. Also, the Retractable Pool Cue is the only cue on the market that is specifically designed for the recreational pool players of the world. Management Weaknesses- The weaknesses that are shown with the Viking Pool Cue is that it simply costs a lot of money to purchase. It is one of the best quality cues on the market, but one must be extremely good at billiards or wealthy to purchase a Viking Pool Cue. Also, Viking Pool Cues are normally only used for professional billiards, which takes away from the everyday pool players. McDermott Pool Cues are in the same section as Viking Pool Cues. The cue is normally used by the professionals, which makes the cost very expensive. Along with the cost, the chances of getting a McDermott pool cue quickly are almost impossible. Pechauer Pool Cues fall alongside McDermott and Viking. The price is a large issue here since these are custom made. Along with the price issue, the Pechauer Cue is much like the McDermott cue in the fact that occupying one of these cue could take a long time. The Retractable Pool Cue had the experience weakness. With the Retractable Pool Cue just arriving on the market, it will take some time for people to become participants with the product. Another weakness facing the Retractable Pool Cue is the fact that some people may be skeptical with its innovative system. People may not buy this product with the fear of the stick mechanics breaking at some time in the future. Marketing Objectives
  13. 13. Cool Cues Incorporated needs to discuss the amount of money that will be coming back into the company as well as how well the sales of the Retractable Pool Cue will affect the company. This information plus the predicted position in the price quality matrix for the Retractable Pool Cue will be examined through these marketing objectives. The first part that is going to be examined is the prediction of market shares for Cool Cues Incorporated. The definition of market share is the percentage or proportion of the total available market or market segment that is being serviced by a company. It can be expressed as a company's sales revenue (from that market) divided by the total sales revenue available in that market. It can also be expressed as a company's unit sales volume (in a market) divided by the total volume of units sold in that market (19 February 2007.)(Market Share. Retrieved March 27, 2007, from Wikipedia Web site: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Market_share). Since the Retractable Pool Cue is not yet on the market, the best possible thing Cool Cues incorporated can do is predict how the market share will go. To do this, the information that is needed is the price of the product, and the amount of people who will buy the product. The price of the Retractable Pool Cue is $230 and the amount of people that are in the market will be a large number. From various researches, our research team found that 98, billiard participation has risen steadily from 32.3 million players to 36 million in 2005 as reported by the National Sporting Goods Association. This rebound brings participation to a new peak, with the gender demographic showing that 63% are male. With this information, Cool Cues Incorporated can somewhat predict that hopefully the Retractable Pool Cue will make upwards of $5,216,400,000 (3600000 X .63 X 230). This would be remarkable for the first year of sales, and Cool Cues Incorporated is striving towards this mark. The price-quality matrix is a large part in determining how successful a product Price Quality Matrix Price Low Medium High Low Cheapie Brand Buy Rip off Quality Medium Bargain Equitable Buy Fad Buy High Steal Good Value Rolls Royce will be in the market. To show how the price-quality matrix works, a diagram is featured below: To determine how well a product will fair, the best option is to let the market experience your product and then go from that information. But since the Retractable
  14. 14. Pool Cue has yet to hit the market, the best Cool Cues Incorporated can do is estimate. To arrange this estimate, Cool Cues Incorporated simple took the information they gathered geared towards the Retractable Pool Cue in place it in the proper category. The category that was chosen was the “Good Value”. This was selected since the price of the cue is not overwhelming and the value of being the only one of its kind is great. Hopefully the market will agree with this once the product is on the shelves. Marketing Strategies To examine the marketing strategies used by Cool Cues incorporated, the main aspect that needs to be looked at is the marketing mix. The marketing mix consists of four parts, which have become known as the 4 P’s. These four P’s are the following: Price, Product, Place, and Promotion. The price and the product are easy to classify, but the place and promotion are the two P’s that are difficult to examine. Place is simply the place or places which will be in the channel of distribution for the new product. These could be stores, venues, expos, the internet, and even people. Promotions are simply put the ways a company advertises its product to consumers. The next section will examine how Cool Cues Incorporated it approaching all four of these strategies. a. Price: Price ranges for billiards are focused around three groups, beginners, advanced player and then professionals. Since Cool Cue Incorporated target market is focused on casual pool players, who are willing to spend money to go to bars and play the game or even set up a pool room in their own homes, our products price will be determined through research. Intermediate and advances players, should consider billiard cue stick ranging from $200 and above. Since we have seen many demographic featuring this information, Cool Cue Incorporated has decided to market our cue at $230. This price will help lead towards success, since it is in the same range as other pool cues available on the market today. b. Product: The next new product idea to enhance the game of billiards, the Retractable Pool Cue. The cue has a red button on the butt of the cue, placed inside of the bumper, which if held will retract the shaft. The player will hold the button until the shaft is at the appropriate length for the shot at hand. Once the shot is finished, the person playing simply has to push the red button once again for it to return to the original size. The full length is 57 inches, the weight is 19 ounces and the tip size is 13mm. Our cues will also feature a tip made out of leather, the ferrule (which protects the cue shaft from breaking by absorbing the impact from the cue ball) will be made of impact-resistant plastic or bone. The Shaft of the cue will be made out of wood coated in fiberglass, the joint will be made out of metal, and the butt will be made out of wood, wrapped in leather to improve the grip on the handle. c. Place: When it came down to the places of distribution for the Retractable Pool Cue, many things came into consideration. One of these aspects was how proficient the store selling the Retractable Pool Cue is at selling billiards
  15. 15. equipment. These stores will be top of the line at distributing billiards cues as well as other equipment. Some of these stores are Dick’s Sporting Goods, Decathalon Sports Goods, and Sports Authority. Besides the actual store creditability, the amount of respect paid towards the Retractable Pool Cue will take toll. The store that will produce the best advertisement for Cool Cues incorporated new product will get the best selling package as well as a good name in a new niche market. d. Promotion: The next piece of information Cool Cue Incorporated research team found was a survey that would aid us in the selling process of the Retractable Pool Cue. As we mentioned before, selling the Retractable Pool Cue will begin with trails at Billiards Expos. The research team discovered a website that is filled with surveys, one which is based on buying habits at expos. This pie chart examines the buying process at the BCA International Billiard & Home Recreation Expo: Retailers make up the majority of the buyer at 94%, followed by room operators at 5%, and 1% categorized as quot;otherquot; operators (Billiards Congress of America, (1994). Billiards Congress of America. Retrieved February 11, 2007, from BCA- Pool Web site: http://www.bca-pool.com/marketing/statistics.shtml). This statistic shows a great possibility for success. With 94% of the people who attend the expo being potential buyers, sales have a great chance of skyrocketing. Along with trails and a question and answer section, the Retractable Pool Cue has a chance for great success with the help of the BCA International Billiard & Home Recreation Expo. Besides billiards expos, Cool Cues Incorporated plans to promote the Retractable Pool Cue via commercial on the television and the radio, demonstrations in local pool halls around the Boston area, and ads in billiards magazines.
  16. 16. Conclusion Cool Cue Incorporated feels confident the newest billiards product on the market, the Retractable Pool Cue, will be successful when it arrives on the market. This is the exact result any new company producing a new product is looking for. Our research team took almost every bit of information possible into consideration before and during creation of the Retractable Pool Cue, and now Cool Cues Incorporated is confident that the finished product was great. The Retractable Pool Cue will be on the market soon, and if you are debating whether it will help you or not, just remember our slogan, “Why scratch it, when you can retract it.”
  17. 17. Marketing Plan The Retractable Pool Cue © Cool Cues Incorporated Michael Griffin
  18. 18. March 28, 2007 Sports Promotion and Marketing Dr. Gentile

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