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At the age of 24 Sue Koenig launched Runners World retail shoe store Well known and nationally ranked as a runner herself Sue knew first hand of the need for athletic shoes uniquely designed for the serious runner Her timing was perfect Word-of-mouth spread and Runners World developed a good base of loyal and repeat customers A national health and exercise craze further fueled the demand for high-end quality running shoes This was a boon to early success and resulted in a steady and profitable growth during the first ten years of operationSue had exclusively chosen Nikes premier line of running shoes as the cornerstone of Runners World retail product line For a time Nikes strong image and aggressive promotion campaign proved to be a very wise and solid marketing strategy However a number of factors have begun to adversely affect Runners Worlds performance Company growth has come to a virtual standstill as recent sales have flattened out Profit levels remain reasonable but could weaken if some immediate and possibly drastic changes are not incorporated Competition fashion and a wide spread loss of interest in running have cut into the niche market share Runners World once solely enjoyed This has Sue concerned about what to doWhen Sue initially started Runners World she had a very specific target market in mind - the serious jogger or runner who wanted the best quality running shoes money could buy Things were simple and straight forward but now the demand and climate is changing Customer choices expectations and needs have expanded There are many alternatives that Sue needs to carefully investigate and explore Fundamentally Sue must seriously evaluate whether there is still a large enough market locally for her particular inventoryIn her heart Sue knows that her mission is sound - to provide high-end running shoes to those who share her passion for the sport There is no question that she reaches her target market Her clientele consisting of
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