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  • Richard M. Williams

ConnectThe2 S6, E18: Storyology: Creating a New Market Category

Updated: Nov 11, 2021

Gary Bolton is the President and CEO of Fiber Broadband Association, an organization that prides itself on being the largest trade association in the Americas dedicated to all-fiber-optic broadband. Gary and co-host Rich have been on and off colleagues at various companies. On today’s episode, these two men recount the cash cow product that led them to create a completely new market category.

Creating a market category...

One aspect of creating product demand is solidifying a new market category. Gary explains a product he and Rich were trying to pitch to different companies: Mid-Band Ethernet. When the product was pitched to business developers, they had no interest in understanding what the product was due to its price point. Because the product was marketed under the price of products similar to it, there was less money opportunity in it for them. Gary explains that situations like these require the creation of a new market category. Once a market category is created, the price points of other categories are less important and the product in the new market category will become more desirable.

Changing the narrative…

When a product is recognized on the market, people will begin calling it by the branded name rather than the name of the item itself. Gary explains that when the market changed for his product, analysts began calling the product by the branded name – Mid-Band Ethernet – instead of 802.3AH, its model name. This illustrates a market shift in favor of your product and signals that you can begin working on a marketing campaign to promote it.

Hear more...

If you've enjoyed these takeaways be sure to listen to our full interview linked below. Check out the youtube link below to see Gary and Rich’s marketing strategy for Mid-Band Ethernet. Also, be sure to listen to, rate and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes, Spotify, Google Play, iHeartRadio or Soundcloud.


  • “We’ve got to create a market category. If we can create this market category, we can define and own that space, and then everybody else in the industry will be basically competing on our terms.” (08:01-08:13)

  • “So now, this category is being tracked, based on our definition, our terms. We've basically created the haul of all the roles in the playing fields.” (11:26-11:38)

  • “You get the analyst, you start to introduce this term. So, now when they're interviewing service providers, you're interviewing other competitors in the vendor market. But what it did is it allowed us to change the narrative with our sales team. So, rather than coming in and saying 802.3AH, they can come in and talk about Mid-Band Ethernet.” (13:10-13:32)

  • “I think by saying it was the new cash cow, it really provided an opening, so we had some sex appeal.” (21:10-21:16)


C2C Case Study- Creating a New Market Category (1)
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