Zebco Brands is a leading marketer of fishing tackle and outdoor gear sold under a portfolio of brand names.
The business challenge
Zebco Brands needed a long-term strategic planning process and three-year plan. The new long-term plan (LTP) process was expected to address the following ‘success factors’:
- Operational focus – Zebco Brands sought a strategy development plan that would focus on key functional areas defined as ‘key performance drivers’, such as sales, product development, consumer marketing, and supply chain management.
- Go-to-market execution – Zebco Brands wanted an ambitious growth plan that would synchronize sales, marketing, finance and operations as a new, integrated, go-to-market team.
- Effective brand portfolio strategy – Zebco Brands needed to optimize its brand portfolio as the fundamental asset for achieving its business objectives. A brand optimization strategy challenged the organization to prioritize each brand relative to future investment and overall resource allocation.
- Cultural acceptance – Zebco Brands solicited cross-functional input throughout the organization to gain broad acceptance and enthusiasm for the new strategic plan.
The Baker Tilly approach
Baker Tilly utilized its proven Strategy Development approach to support Zebco Brands’ development of a long-term plan. The project consisted of three key phases:
- Current state assessment – Conducted interviews with external customers and internal staff. Developed a deep-dive analytical approach to assess the priority functional areas to create a current state assessment of the ‘key performance drivers’. Led an in-depth financial analysis (by region, by channel, and by brand) to assess the financial strength/weakness of the organization.
- Future state development – Defined the major ‘Strategic Scenarios’ that represented the alternative strategic paths for the business. Evaluated those alternatives and developed a draft business plan for each strategic scenario. The cross-functional project team evaluated those unique scenarios and ultimately aligned on the optimal strategic path.
- Go-to-market execution –Baker Tilly led the team through a series of facilitated ideation meetings and workshops to develop a go-to-market action plan for the aligned strategic scenario. The action plan was driven by a roadmap of projects and initiatives that resulted from the design-thinking (innovation focused) methodology.
The business impact
- The long-term plan development process resulted in a three-year roadmap to achieve Zebco Brands’ target growth and enabled the company to compare quarter-by-quarter results against the LTP projection.
- The Zebco Brands organization achieved the following operational advantages: strategic focus on key functional areas, disciplined go-to-market execution, effective marketing investment and acceptance of the new strategic path across the organization.
- The year following the implementation of the long-term planning process, the Zebco Brands organization was on-track for very successful business performance consistent with the three-year-plan.