“Double Plays” Provide an Advantage in Baseball & Total Market Approach

In baseball, a double play is the act of making two outs during the same continuous playing action. Double plays give a team a strong advantage over their opponents, by reducing their opportunity to score — in the most efficient manner possible.
Joe Savery

Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Joe Savery (55) in a game against the Baltimore Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on June 10, 2012. Photo credit: Keith Allison

In baseball, a double play is the act of making two outs during the same continuous playing action.  Double plays give a team a strong advantage over their opponents, by reducing their opportunity to score — in the most efficient manner possible.  While all baseball teams would like to play that efficiently, the 1949 Philadelphia Athletics team has held baseball’s double play record for over 60 years, with 217 double plays in a single season.  Only 10 teams in baseball history have ever reached 200 double plays in a single season. Unfortunately, new product or new service double plays are even more challenging to identify.

Businesses today are seeking “double plays” in business models, marketing and go-to-market – efficient strategies that allow them to make two plays with one action, gaining an advantage over the competition as well as a higher ROI with one move.  The “double play” is intrinsic to the total market approach strategies discussed within the industry:

A beans/grains food manufacturer sought a marketing strategy to trigger both Hispanic and non-Hispanic product/concept development.  For example, a “single play” strategy for Hispanic market might emphasize hominy and pozole soups, but that strategy would miss the mark with non-Hispanics.  Likewise, a market emphasis on baked beans and bean casseroles would result in a successful “single play” in non-Hispanic market, but miss with the critical Hispanic market.  Instead, through ethnographies, in-store interviews and econometrics research, we leveraged the connectors and overlaps found in the nuances of each market and identified a convergence ‘zone’ to create high probability “double plays.”   Not surprisingly, refried beans were found to be extremely popular with both 1st and 2nd generation Hispanics as well as the non-Hispanic market.  The most growth efficient “double plays” innovations received funding and proceeded to the next step of development. “Double Plays” offer a higher ROI because the efforts include more high propensity likely adopters from the total market, with one holistic plan and resource investment.

While this example has been simplified, the reality is that identifying the connectors amid the nuances of multiple markets can be more complex, requiring quantitative research and insights to be completed in order to develop the strategic “double play”.  But the results pay off economically and in the market, as you gain advantage over the competition.   Total market strategies and “double plays” certainly appear to be the growing mantra for the current and future marketing strategies.

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About SSG
SSG is a strategy consultancy driven by management P&L experience and predictive analytics. We develop fact-based business models, growth roadmaps, insights and segmentations for the Total Market and the evolving Hispanics, Multicultural & Millennial segments. We help clients focus their limited resources where the highest market opportunities exist, and which strategies advance maximum, efficient Total Market growth.


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