More than you might think. We asked nearly 400 people who had conducted over 1800 B2B-optimized Discovery interviews. Over half agreed or strongly agreed that they had gained unexpected interviews. Only 14% gained no unexpected information at all. (Most of the 1800+ interviews were in suppliers’ existing markets.)
More in white paper, Guessing at Customer Needs (page 6)
You’ll gain $4000 in net present value for every day you launch a typical B2B product earlier. Consider 3 ways to speed innovation: 1. Strengthen front-end work to end hesitation, second-guessing, and dead-end detours. 2. Concentrate resources on fewer projects. 3. Reduce “organizational friction.”
More in article, How Leaders Can Accelerate New-Product Innovation
Research shows top sales professionals ask customers questions such as, “What problems are you facing?” Why not ask this before you develop a new product —not just afterwards? Such questions engage, so customers are often “half-sold” by your launch date. And their answers let you create much better new products. So… one question, two benefits.
More in Leader’s Guide Videos Lesson 17, Engage your B2B customers
Be very nervous about “confirmation bias.” Most B2B companies have NPD processes designed to let this bias run rampant. See The AIM Institute’s research on how quantitative interviews and Market Satisfaction Gaps remove this bias… and help you reduce commercial risk in the front-end of innovation.
More in research report, Preference Interview Research Report
Your market is growing at 3% and your operating plan says you’ll grow faster than this next year. Of course, your competitors have similar plans… meaning everyone plans to grow faster than the market served. As TV psychologist Dr. Phil would say, “How’s that been working for you?” Could it be time for a different approach… e.g. understanding customer needs far better than competitors?
More in Leader’s Guide Videos Lesson 1, Recognize your growth challenge
Is your pricing supplier-focused, competitor-focused, or customer-focused? If you don’t want to leave money on the table with your new innovation, it must be customer-focused. Unless you regularly employ value calculators for this today, you can be sure your prices are not being optimized.
More in article, Getting Top Price for Your New Product
Some companies use the front end of innovation to validate hypotheses or make financial projections. Wrong approach. The front end is a time for learning what you didn’t know, not analysis. Successful teams usually pursue a market without a solution but with an open mind. Converge too soon, and you’ll often miss the best fodder for innovation.
More in e-book, Reinventing VOC for B2B
B2C suppliers use customer interviews to gain insight. B2B suppliers should do this AND to build B2B customer engagement. If your B2B market has a handful of large buyers, use your interviews to impress them as the supplier they should do business with. Three practical ways to do this are explored here.
More in ebook, Reinventing VOC for B2B
It’s natural to ruminate on the future; in particular, about technology adoption. What changes will future technology waves bring? Will we ride them to riches or drown under the weight of disruption? A Danish proverb warns that “Prediction is dangerous, especially about the future.” A cycle of bad logic Unfortunately, when we theorize, we can ... Read More
First, how interested are they in this topic? Second, how confident are they that this supplier can help them? The first condition puts a premium on your ability to find the right people in the right companies. The second requires you to demonstrate serious intent and—if possible—past successes in market-facing innovation.
More in article, Better B2B Customer Recruiting for Market Research