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On-Site Training

SMD provides customized on-site training on pricing and related strategic marketing topics. In these classes, participants get to work on exercises that relate to issues currently facing the company. When possible, the classes will address specific issues facing the company, making the classes much like an interactive consulting session.

List of current standard offerings
(Click on the class title for links to the course outline)

An Overview of Pricing Analysis
This one or two day course provides an overview of the analysis that should be done to formulate an effective pricing policy. It is designed for product managers and those who need to make pricing decisions but lack extensive formal pricing training or analytical experience. The basics of cost analysis are reviewed to demonstrate which costs are relevant to a pricing decision and how they should influence pricing decisions. Next the key issues that need to be addressed in estimating demand are discussed, such as segmentation, customer value and psychology. It then illustrates how these factors can be incorporated into models that predicting choice and how it is likely to be influenced by price. The course then shifts strategies and tactics that can be used when pricing in a competitive market to avoid price wars or minimize the damage when one can't be avoided. Particular attention is paid to determining when a firm should be a price leader or when it is best to follow and how to best function in the chosen role. A selection of specific pricing tactics, such as temporary price discounts, quantity discounts and bundling, will be covered according to the needs and objectives of the class. When possible the concepts covered will be applied to case studies that are drawn from examples facing the client company.

Value Estimation and Market Modeling
This one day course is designed for those who have some experience in pricing analysis who would like to know more about the techniques used to estimate demand. It provides an overview of the primary techniques used to estimate what a customer is (or should be) willing to pay for a product and/or service offering and how to translate those estimates in combination with other factors into useful estimates of demand. Value estimation techniques covered include monetary value to the customer analysis, tradeoff analysis, and statistical estimation based on revealed preference. The second part of the course reviews issues associated with translating a measure of willingness to pay from the value analysis into reliable estimates of unit sales at different prices. Some of the limitations of traditional modeling approaches will be reviewed along with approaches to dealing with them.

Managing Price in a Competitive Market
This one-day course provides a framework for making pricing decisions in competitive markets. It combines game theoretic approaches with management science tools and the systematic use of qualitative judgment to develop a process for pricing in competitive environments. It introduces an approach for formulating hypotheses about a competitor's pricing processes and testing them against current and historical pricing behavior. It also presents several alternative approaches to pricing in a competitive environment, including: "proactive pricing" by being an effective price leader, "reactive pricing" by responding quickly and decisively to the prices of one or more competitors, and "transformative pricing" in which price is used in conjunction with other marketing tools to encourage competitors to change the way they set prices.

Designing and Pricing Product Lines
This one-day course is valuable to both those who are involved in the design of new products as well as product and brand managers are responsible for pricing product lines. A key consideration in product design should be the trade-off between what a customer is willing to pay for various potential features and what it costs to provide them. A basic approach to designing a product (good or service) that will maximize its profit contribution from its primary target market is presented. Next the potential challenges of providing a product line that targets multiple segments, such as the potential for unprofitable cannibalization, are discussed along with ways of optimally dealing with them through effective price and product design. the course will also reveal how profits can be increased by offering and optimally pricing bundles of products and services along with (and often instead of) the individual offerings.

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Other Services
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