AIM Archives - Year: 2016

If you like sub-optimizing, you’ll love using traditional voice-of-customer methods.

Traditional Voice of Customer

B2B companies have huge advantages over B2C, but they may not be obvious. After all, didn’t the same fellow who bought a rail car of soda ash also buy a can of soda pop? Nope. He changed… a lot. B2B customers are more technically savvy, objective, supplier-dependent, and can predict their needs. Careful reflection of these differences leads to different approaches.

More in article, B2B Customer Interviews: Are They Different?

Some companies don’t launch products. They let them escape.

83 Products that Escape

This is how one B2B marketer described their launch process to me. It’s much better to use a rigorous process, documented in five brief reports: Launch Plan Summary (with strategy, team, activities & results), Prospect Profile, Message Brief, Media Guide, and Launch Results. The middle three address who to tell, what to tell and how to tell.

More in article, How to Plan an Amazing B2B Product Launch (Originally published in B2B Organic Growth newsletter).

Plan an Amazing B2B Product Launch

How to plan an amazing B2B product launch

How can you know with absolute confidence that you’ve put together all the key elements of a winning product launch plan? Prepare these 5 product launch plan documents: 1) Launch Plan Executive Summary, 2) Prospect Profile, 3) Message Brief, 4) Media Guide, and 5) Launch Results. ... Read More

Be clear on what you own and what your customers own.

82 Solutions

Customers own “outcome” space. You own “solution” space. Don’t let them into your space… unless you want to become a contract manufacturer. Instead, enter their space to understand desired outcomes better than competitors. This lets you deliver unique value in your solutions, which is handsomely rewarded though premium pricing.

More in article, Should You Develop New Products like Steve Jobs? (Originally published in B2B Organic Growth newsletter).

What Really Impacts B2B New Product Success Rates?


Experts have bemoaned the low success rates of new products for years. One highly respected researcher, Dr. Robert Cooper, puts the success rate at one-in-four, when measured from the beginning of the development stage. What’s the cause for such a low success rate? Since the early 1970’s, research has shown the main problem isn’t with ... Read More

Maximizing shareholder value is a lovely result… but a lousy goal.

81 Shareholder Value

Tell me to increase shareholder value and I struggle to identify something I can do as an employee to raise earnings per share. Tell me to understand and increase customer value, and I can think of a dozen things to do, most of them actionable, measurable, and beneficial to our bottom line. Many of these I will find inspiring… as will others.

More in article, Why Maximizing Shareholder Value is a Flawed Goal (Originally published in B2B Organic Growth newsletter).

What Do Top Innovators Say to B2B Customers? Surprise Me.

What Do Top Innovators Say to B2B Customers Surprise Me

The best B2B innovators understand that their customers know much more about their needs than they do. So they start by pursuing unexpected customer insight. Cuyahoga Falls, OH (December 1, 2016) – for immediate release Cuyahoga Falls, OH (December, 2016)—Imagine you’re building a new factory: Do you want to be surprised? Nope. What if you’re installing a ... Read More