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Media Release

July 21 2008

Unlocking the secrets of product evolution in the marketplace

Professor Malcolm WrightModern western societies are changing at a rapid rate and today many major corporations like Google, Microsoft and Nokia are based on products that did not exist 20 years ago.

Head of UniSA’s School of Marketing, Professor Malcolm Wright has been applying marketing science principles to help businesses confront the challenge of technological transformation that threatens the lifecycle of products in the market.

Prof Wright will present the seminar The birth of ideas and the death of technology tomorrow evening, July 22, as part of the University’s free Working Links lecture series, Gift of knowledge 2008. Prof Wright will share his experiences and insights on how new ideas and products enter the market and how they grow and displace those of their competitors.

Marketers have spent the last 40 years developing and applying models that predict how new products will fair in the marketplace and Prof Wright outlines what they have learnt. He discusses much of his research on forecasting using practical examples ranging from steam locomotives to the growth of broadband, and presents the facts and folklore about the product lifecycle and how applying marketing science can help businesses rise to the challenge.

“Marketing practitioners have a lot of knowledge about how new products are adopted but they can be open to taking on folklore,” Prof Wright said.

“By studying many markets, we can discover many instances where popular ideas are overstated, or just flatly wrong. It’s far better to base decisions on hard-won facts rather than on popular theories that have only weak support,” he said.

Recently Prof Wright developed an interest in the decay and decline of technologies and shows how this can be predicted and, in the case of unsustainable technologies, encouraged.

Members of the public are invited to register online to attend the seminar tomorrow, Tuesday July 22, in the Bradley Forum, Level 5, Hawke Building at UniSA’s City West campus, North Terrace Adelaide from 5:45pm – 8pm.

The Working Links lecture series reflects the University’s links with business leaders that ensure UniSA is teaching the knowledge they seek in our students and undertakes marketing science research that adds to the pool of knowledge.

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