An organization is made of a group of people who have a common goal. However, for the company to thrive, it requires a visionary leader who sets the direction to be followed by this group. A visionary leader ensures the company survives the odds. Having a business idea that lacks vision is as useless as not having the idea. This paper focuses on a case study on GoPro Company founded by Nick Woodman to understand these points better.
GoPro Company founded to sell cameras that help consumers to record picture and video of events with ease of operation. The market targeted by this product include the young generation which is enthusiastic and full of action as well as the desire to record memorable moments. Now, the brand has managed to capture about 90% market share in this particular market. This means that it might be slightly difficult for the brand to sustain or increase their revenue growth rates (lcsilva portfolio, 2017). This paper will focus on the aspects of the company as well as the founder. The paper is structured in a way that it will identify and explain the dark side entrepreneurship and demystify the utopia on entrepreneurship. The next step the paper analyzes the company, by identifying how it creates a competitive edge in marketing followed by the threats that the company might face or may face in the future.
Much have sad concerning the good traits of entrepreneurship to the extent that entrepreneurs are viewed as ideal human beings. However, entrepreneurs also face challenges not only external challenges but also internal challenges that are at personal level(Miller, 2015). These challenges are the once that contribute to the various characters that entrepreneurs exhibit on their dark side.
The need for control
In most cases, it is found that entrepreneurs are very much preoccupied with control, which affects their ability to take or give direction appropriately. This affects their relations with others. When an issue that involves control surfaces, entrepreneurs fantasize about authority, power, influence and grandiosity yet at times it makes them feel helpless(Miller, 2015).. This is due to the fear that their desire for grandiosity may spin out of control and leave them at the mercy of others. This trait makes it difficult for entrepreneurs to find it hard to change from the role of a superior to a subordinate(Frese, 2015). They experience structure stifling unless they have the structure themselves. Nick Woodman is no different his desire to be incontrol lead him to found the online gaming which went belly up during the dot-com era and finally the GoPro company that is now making billions. However, this desire made him work on the project for four years due to the fear of failure and being at the mercy of others(Manfred, 2017).
Entrepreneurs rarely pay enough attention to their health and wellbeing since work takes much of their time. They stay up late which leads to sleep disorders and bad eating habits which leads to health deterioration (Miller, 2015)..
Desire for applause
Though the entrepreneurs have that grandiosity desire, only a few of them desire applause. Entrepreneurs believe that the more one conquers the challenges the one is venerable to pride and finally, failure and betrayal sets in(Miller, 2015). This character makes the entrepreneur live on the edge fearing that their success will not last. Moreover, this anxiety is the cause of their need for control and sense of anxiety. The Go Pro founder was constantly working on the prototype for four years, and finally, after the breakthrough, he never showed boasted of his achievements but rather marketed his product(Manfred, 2017).
The defenses that entrepreneurs use
The world is filled with a lot of controlling factors that interferes with individual's personalities. Due to this, entrepreneurs have developed their unique way of dealing with these factors(Miller, 2015). Entrepreneurs tend to be very keen on what is taking place around them, for this reason, they interpret everything to describe the success of their venture or their failure. For instant one of the entrepreneur described of having a dream whereby, in his dream, he would see himself on a balcony being praised by women(Frese, 2015). Others believe the failure in their business is a sacrifice or a price they have to pay to be successful, which makes their comeback stronger and wiser. The same reason, made Nick Woodman to introduce another business, which he had worked on for four years fearing failure after the first one, went bankrupt(Manfred, 2017).
According to Peter Drucker, entrepreneurship comes about due to discipline. According to the case of Nick Woodman, how he explains it is that he had to check out from his normal life including friends and family. He locked himself in the in his beachside bedroom to build his first prototype. Allocating time to build the Go Pro first prototype required discipline that went to the extent of locking out his social life. Therefore, I support the claims of Peter Drucker that entrepreneurship Is all about discipline(Drucker, 2016). According to Merriam-Webster, an entrepreneur is one who takes risk and manages them within a business or an enterprise. This therefore illustrates that entrepreneurship is a disposition on an individual that drives him to attempt difficult or untried ventures. This conforms to Peter Drucker’s view that entrepreneurship is not magic or mystery or anything to do with genes and that it involves a lot of efforts as well as discipline to make it as an entrepreneur.
Marketing and Strategic Plan
Go Pro Company has largely managed to dominate the specific segment in the camera market by remaining simple in their marketing strategies. In the beginning, the founder of the company Nick Woodman and his roommate and friend used to run up surfing shops across the country in an effort to market the Go Pro camera, which he used to store in his father’s garage. The move to go round canvasing in surfing shops helped in creating awareness of the product to the market as well as prepared the market to expect a new product that would add value to surfing activities. The second step of marketing that gave the product a competitive edge is the appearance on QCV TV, where Nick Woodman met Sara Blakely, a billionaire who was also building her company by then(Feltz and Zhang, 2017).His association with this billionaire and appearance on QCV ensured that the brand reached many people around the country thus creating prospective customers. This also contributed to the company’s competitive advantage. This ensured that the company had a competitive edge as it offered a new invention that would make the sporting activity more attractive through recording events and activities. Also, the company relied on professional athletes and extreme sports enthusiasts to support and promote their brand. In return, the company would sponsor the professional athletes and the sports enthusiasts(Doeden, 2016). This ensured that the brand awareness was created through television viewing as well as to the audiences who attended the events. However, this strategy was productive but failed to reach the whole world; it was only able to reach the audience in California. Moreover, the strategy is highly costly and competitive, as many brands also want to advertise themselves throughout the same means. Recently the company is using Go Pro YouTube channel, which connects with many people across the world. This channel gives freedom to clients to post their content that is unique and memorable. This has made the Go Pro channel to be the most visited channel on YouTube, with over 22million viewers. This strategy is more up to date and less costly as it uses the contents from users to attract viewership from new clients and engage prospective clients remotely hence creating a large customer base with over 4.7 million likes on Facebook (Cook, 2017). At present, the company has moved to incorporate social media platforms and customer referrals, which have played a key role in maintaining the company's competitive advantage. The social media platform has managed to amass millions of followers, which has made this brand to be recognized worldwide(lcsilva portfolio, 2017).
Also, the company has structured various ways to ensure the product reaches the customer everywhere across the world. This has been made possible by using its supply channels that are, the company website that sells directly to the customer, sales distributors, and affiliate programs that sell the product through consumer promotion. This has increased the visitors’ number and sales such that the number doubled within a year in 2015, recording an annual sale of $ 363 million(Vannini and Stewart, 2017).
The success of the Go Pro Company has also been challenged besides its monopoly. The challenges are seen as threats that might harm the existence of the company in future. These threats include.
The first threat is that the advancement of smart phones technology might render the Go Pro cameras unreliable. This will reduce the sales of the company and eventually take it out. However, the Go Pro Company may work on a strategy to work together with the smartphone company so that they maintain their sales. Such a strategy might involve developing a camera that has an option of attaching a smartphone(lcsilva portfolio, 2017).
The other threat is the competitors such as Garmin Ltd which released Virb Ultra 30, a product similar to Go Pro Hero 4 and Sony company which has already shipped its first camera that has an image stabilizer and stereo sound both of which the Go Pro has not yet developed(Feltz and Zhang, 2017).
This advanced feature might hurt the popularity of the company in that the Go Pro cameras will be viewed as outdated by customers thus making the sales to drop. The threat can be curbed through investing in research and development on how to develop a Go Pro camera that advanced and superior feature to ensure the continuity of the product line(cook, 2017).
The other threat is that the company relies on outsourcing of cameras while its competitor manufactures the cameras thus reducing the cost. Once the Sony camera manages to market their product successfully, this will provide a huge competition regarding price and product specifications. The threat can again be minimized through engaging in research and development, which will provide a way in manufacturing the cameras, their cameras instead of relying on outsourced ones. This will also provide the opportunity for enhancing the specifications (cook, 2017).
Another threat is the economic welfare of the country. It is projected that the United States economy is headed for a recession, which may slow down the sales of the company. According to the economic analysis, the Federal Reserve is aiming to increase the interest rates by June. This will slow down the United States economy. For the middle-class individual to be available to cope with such an economy one will be forced to cut down on vacations and luxury items of which both will affect the sales of Go Pro success (lcsilva portfolio, 2017).
Also, the company might be preparing to create another threat once it decides to expand into a media company. This is due to its inefficiency in posting content compared to Google and Sony. Moreover, the company only focuses on the young and enthusiastic generation who wants to be at the cutting edge of technology. Finally, the expected economic nosedive might harm the finances in a way that the company might fail to recover (cook, 2017).
From the paper we can conclude that the perceived utopia on entrepreneurship does not exist in fact, an entrepreneur faces many challenges than the employed individual. Moreover, he works three times more than the employed. The best thing about entrepreneurship is that after a given time the entrepreneurship career pays off and pays handsomely and sustainability. According to the case study on GO Pro, it is evident that the founder Nick Woodman dislikes reporting to the board and working under an established structure. This dislike plus the passion to record eventful moments is what drove him to come up with the Go Pro product.
However, the above-mentioned are not the only factors that drive the entrepreneur; there is also the discipline factor that has been evident in the case study. Nick Woodman was ready to sacrifice his social life to work on his dream for four years, which eventually paid off.
The GoPro Company has also managed to thrive in the market due to the various strategies it has managed to put in place to ensure that their products reach their customers. However, the journey has not been that smooth for a company founded in 2002, and its brand only came to be recognized ten years later. Moreover, the company is expecting to face threats in the future.
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