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
If your new product development process begins with “idea generation,” is it your idea… or your customers’? If you start with your idea, you probably won’t understand customer needs until the end… by seeing if they buy your new product. Why not flip your approach and start with customer needs? Unless you’d rather your R&D kept guessing at customer needs.
More in white paper, www.guessingatcustomerneeds.com
A persona is a hypothetical archetype used to represent customers in a given market segment. Follow 4 practices for B2B growth: 1) Design for just one person, 2) be specific, 3) remember precision is more important than accuracy, and 4) separate user personas from buyer personas. ... Read More
Are you launching one breakthrough new product after another? Or are your new products evoking yawns from customers? Research shows the most likely reason for the latter is failing to properly 1) uncover, 2) understand, and 3) prioritize market needs. Here’s how to correct this in your B2B new product development. We shouldn’t be surprised ... Read More
Problem 1—What’s the right question?—focuses on market needs. Problem 2—What’s the right answer?—is all about your solutions. Most companies put 90+% of project spending into Problem2, yet Problem 1 causes most new product failures. Hmmm… are you sensing a possible competitive advantage here? Will you explore it further? Will you seize it?
More in white paper, www.catchtheinnovationwave.com (page 4)
Donald Rumsfeld described “unknown unknowns,” but B2B innovators, marketers and new product developers should also consider the dangers of untrue beliefs. It’s quite destructive when we build business cases, draft risk assessments, and plan projects on the basis of something that simply isn’t true. ... Read More
Some would say that investments in Voice of the Customer are “too expensive and time consuming.” After all, does it really make sense for employees to spend time on VoC projects? For them to be on the road, interviewing customers? Instead, shouldn’t they be doing things that “drive sales?” Like working more shows? Assisting sales ... Read More
Your B2B customers have a long list of problems to be solved. But it’s not their job to carefully explain each one and deliver it gift-wrapped to your solution providers. It’s your job. When your sales professionals probe deeply and capture customer needs uniformly in your CRM, you’ll gain unprecedented market insight. And by probing well, your sales team will sell more. We call this Everyday VOC.
More in Everyday VOC white paper, www.EVOCpaper.com
A large, unexpected revenue upturn this quarter is good news, right? It certainly feels good, but the satisfaction is fleeting. What you really need is growth that is unrelenting, earned and reliable. When business executives don’t understand the nature of “good” B2B organic growth, they risk three pitfalls. B2B Organic Growth Pitfalls Pitfall 1. “Let’s ... Read More
What is the value proposition of a product? The Value Proposition of a product is a formal statement describing the competitive advantage of a new product for a given market segment. Though many examples exist, the jobs-to-be-done methodology provides a precise template upon which to build a clear, concise, unambiguous statement. It tells WHAT we’re ... Read More
Most B2B companies don’t have a good system for prioritizing customer needs. At least this is what The AIM Institute found in its recent research. Of 12 voice-of-customer skills measured, this is the skill survey respondents most wanted to improve. Prioritizing customer needs was also identified as the greatest differentiator between successful and unsuccessful new product developers.
More in research report, www.b2bvocskills.com (page 11)
Even if your Stage-Gate® reviews are highly evolved, I’ll bet they’re missing a critical element: I doubt they separate your projects’ Execution Quality and Opportunity Quality. In this issue, we’ll see why this is holding you back. We’ll also look at a brand-new release of Blueprinter® software that remedies this. Imagine you’ve got two project ... Read More
The “old way” of interviewing was to “validate” your idea with customers… but this leads to confirmation bias. With the “new way,” you focus on their needs and gain 5 benefits… 1) add new outcomes to your design, 2) eliminate costs for unimportant outcomes, 3) learn why they want outcomes (for better pricing), 4) engage them more, and 5) move faster. ... Read More
Quality guru Edwards Deming taught us that “94% of problems in business are systems driven and only 6% are people driven.” With the right systems, a company will grow and thrive. And few are more important than the “feedback loop.” Unfortunately, this term has been used so broadly that the original and powerful meaning has ... Read More