Posts Tagged ‘go-to-market’

Defining a Core Business Problem for Technology Companies

June 24th, 2014

It has been a while since we wrote a post, so I thought I would outline why I think that you, as a technology vendor, probably have a unique technology, but have an adoption problem. What you think is a technology adoption problem is really a buyer adoption problem.

As a buyer, I bet if I read your website or marketing materials, I would not be clear on what strategic business problem that you solve or what changes in behavior are required of the buyers to adopt your approach. But I can hear you say:”Wait. You don’t know what I do. How can you say I have a problem without looking at my stuff?”

I know because this is the core existential problem for almost every technology company and because adoption is so difficult to overcome quickly. Technology by definition is change. Newer is better, different. If it ain’t new, it ain’t technology. Even “old” technology is referring to something that was new at the time and now is obsolete. So, the business of technology is the business of change. Continue reading “Defining a Core Business Problem for Technology Companies” »

Disrupt, Displace, Bleh. Semantics, right? WRONG

February 4th, 2014

I got interesting feedback from my post yesterday. I used very deliberate language to segment a disruptive technology versus a better displacement technology. It was interesting because the people who were in the midst of go-to-market planning immediately gravitated to the difference and the impact on their planning, but those who were involved, but not actively working on a market strategy didn’t see the theorectical difference. I thought I would explain why this was so critical and how it can change your adoption curve dramatically on both sides.

First, let’s clarify what disruption means versus displacement from a buyer’s point of view. Almost all technology companies seem to see this as the same from their perpective hence the go-to-market is the same. “We are going to disrupt the market and displace the leading competitor with our better technology.”

Yes, BUT…. that is from a vendor’s perspective. From a buyer’s perspective as it relates to their adoption, disrupt and displace has tremendous impact on whether they buy or not. Disrupt is perceived as disrupting our current operational processes. The more disruptive, the harder the adoption.

Continue reading “Disrupt, Displace, Bleh. Semantics, right? WRONG” »

Disruption and Adoption Are Confusing the Real Issue

February 3rd, 2014

It starts with the dreaded question in the pitch meeting. Usually slide #2 of your supposed 5 slide deck. “I think I get what you do, how are you going to build a market?”

You, at that point, will discuss the extrapolated X number of companies that fit the target, talk about your percentage that of the available that you would like to have within Y years, and then talk about all of the mechanics that you plan on driving to get  that percentage at Z cost per customer in acquisition costs. Numbers are actually irrelevant since the person who asked the question won’t really believe your answer; they just want to see if you understand the variables to the formula.

What is really hidden in the question is the assumption about how expensive it is to build and develop a market. They are looking for your Go-to-market strategy, but really they are looking for your built-in short-cuts. They are looking for ways that you can short-circuit the standard investment model for building a market.

Continue reading “Disruption and Adoption Are Confusing the Real Issue” »

Bridging the Gap – Explaining Buyer Marketing

September 6th, 2012

Holy Grail of Marketing – Identify the “qualified” buyers as they enter the market. Welcome to Buyer Marketing….

Think about your own market…

  • Most buyers in the market are not buyers – users, influencers, students, want-a-be’s, job searchers, consultants, vendors, etc.
  • Most buyers are not actually in the market unless they have a need
  • Most buyers are not aware of the market, just their need (symptoms, pain, or problem)
  • So the market is “unqualified”, buyer is “qualified”
  • Buyers are not tolerant any longer of “unqualified” messaging; ie. your market message when they don’t see the need Continue reading “Bridging the Gap – Explaining Buyer Marketing” »

Buyer Marketing versus Customer-Centric Go-to-Market

June 6th, 2012

The Buyer Marketing approach is different than the “customer-centric” approach in that we foster a relationship with a buyer that starts prior to the transaction, even prior to the first contact. The buyer marketing process starts with their problem and anticipating their particular situation. The customer centric approach is centered around the transaction.  You get what you get.  It operates as designed. But more and more, potential  buyers are rejecting the customer-centric transactional approach to the market. Everything that’s wrong with your customer-centric approach to sales and marketing, the market is already telling you:

  • Buyers are rejecting the transactional world view approach because they are being overwhelmed by the sheer number of “look at me” messages. “Open” rates, “click thrus” and tradeshow attendance are all down.
  • Buyers aren’t centered on the transaction, but rather their business problem. Engaging later in the sales process.
  • The transaction is the byproduct of my investment in solving this problem. Driving solution education without vendors.
  • Buyers start with my problem and end with your transaction. Buyers expect understanding of their need, not discover it during the sales process.

Most BtoB organizations have a market translation problem right now as they cannot successfully identify and anticipate a likely buyers needs and communicate that understanding that supports the buyer’s perspective.  In most markets, vendors do not assist buyers with the context of their perspective sufficient to enable buyers to tell the difference between your products and your competitors. They don’t see the difference in solving their problems, just messaging around the transaction. With the widespread usage of social networks, online communities, blogs, and technical forums; the market now has visability and a perception of your company, your transparency and performance even before they talk with your people. You have to be in the right places to influence the sale prior to their defining their requirements or your organization will be forced to accept their perception of what they think they need, the alternatives, and the value whether this perception is correct or not.

Are you practicing Buyer Marketing? Are your company’s sales and marketing activities helping them make better buying decisions? Are you investing in the right activities to enable their buying process?