We began our last day in Istanbul with a visit to 3M. Honestly, there wasn’t a lot to take away from this rather redundant 3M presentation. Yes, we know already. . . 3M = innovation. They revisited the macro-economic variables that make Turkey unique and described in detail the 3M product mix. We also got to see more org charts – bonus. In terms of how 3M is organized, it’s not dissimilar to the US. They use both a direct sales force and distributors. So, 3 hours later . . .
The 3M Visit sort of re-addresses the fact that Carlson might need to re-visit how they approach the companies involved in next year’s Global Discovery program. For example, one of our lecturers was a marketing rock star, and she talked a lot about various marketing channels 3M used – but not once did she touch on how these channels might be used differently in Turkey vs. the U.S., what aspects of the population and culture of Turkey drove the use of different marketing channels and communications, how they marketed differently in big chains vs. local stores etc. Even the one thing that was mildly new information – that the production of one of their products designed specifically for the Turkish market was outsourced to a local partner and not manufactured by 3M – was not that surprising to most of us.
We had some free time today before we embark on a cruise on the Bosphorus followed by dinner in the flower market. We’ve heard a lot of classmates mention that they are getting to know people better than they have in the year and a half before the trip. Mostly, it’s for the better.
So, this is the end of our blog. We hope you’ve enjoyed. Here’s my big take away – – the fact that Turkey is secular, democratic, Muslim, capitalist and part of N.A.T.O. wed with a growing economy and young population makes it one of the most attractive markets for not only driving growth, but for ensuring a more peaceful existence. I hope to see Turkey again soon in the near future.