Think about products or businesses that didn’t exist 20 or 30 years ago, like Ibis, Starbucks, Easyjet, Facebook. They all look at the customer problem from a new, fresh angle. In other words, they exploit a new customer insight.
Know what your competitor doesn’t know
Discovering the customers’ needs or wishes better than competitors has become a competitive edge. Companies that understand this also know that it doesn’t happen by coincidence, but requires hard, dedicated work with a spice of creative magic. It is absolutely worth investing as exploiting a new insight has the power to change the game.
But how enthusiastically are businesses looking for pain points, motivations or dreams of their customers? How far do executives and their teams go to find a customer insight that can have a significant impact on the strategy, the innovation pipeline and marketing?
If you are able to find such insights and know how to make use of them, you can bring brands, divisions or whole companies from a defensive to the much more interesting offensive position.
Business changing customer insights interpret what customers really want or long for to tackle their tasks or problems more effectively. Such insights can rarely be found ad hoc or via the analysis of internal customer data. These insights are discovered through an objective outside-in view. This is why we work with the CFI methodology. It is based on the solution free job-to-be-done logic. CFI enlightens a blunt external view on the problems and dreams customers have when using products. The results are an inspiring source of customer insights to be transformed into concrete content for innovation, marketing and sales.
With a bit of luck, the right customer insight can be the key to turn a market upside down.
Customer insights in practice
- Premium chocolate producer in India: What is the right customer insight to allure Indians to eating chocolate?
- TV: The younger generation no longer watches TV. Which customer insights can bring them back?
- Automation and control solutions for coal and gas power plants: What are the pain points that operators in Asia, the USA and Europe have and what innovative solutions are called for to meet these pain points?
Customers will choose a new product only if it provides added value. As a great number of new products don‘t offer noticeably more value than existing solutions there is no reason for customers to switch. As a consequence revenues don‘t grow and return on investment in innovation is negative.
Companies are misled by their inside-out view:
- Engineers tend to develop technologically challenging products/features
- Sales people want the same things that competition already has (“me-too”)
- Management defends own profit rather than customer value
Besides, all parties being convinced that customers make their choice based on three generic criteria, namely quality, reliability and price, they miss a major opportunity!
Look at innovation from the customer view
If you play according to our game plan for growth, your new products will provide more customer value. You strengthen the customer view during the whole innovation process – from idea generation to market introduction – focusing decisions on what customers really want.
To achieve this, Vendbridge has co-developed an approach called Customer-Focused Innovation (CFI). CFI is a powerful logic to develop an in-depth and quantitatively validated understanding of the pain points customers have. CFI makes customer-focused innovation possible. With the help of powerful tools like Pain Promise Proof, CFI Need Landscape, Job Map and Pain Sheets, CFI guides you to develop targeted innovation strategies, generate and select the winning ideas and keep developments on the fast track.
CFI combines the revolutionary job-to-be-done theory of Harvard innovation professor, Clayton Christensen, with practical tools along the innovation process. The idea behind that is simple but powerful: don‘t sell products or services. Instead, help customers to better perform the jobs they try to get done. That’s what they truly value.
Products with weak or exchangeable value propositions will fail, while those with strong propositions will succeed. That’s why we help our clients to create compelling value propositions that customers can hardly resist.
For us a value proposition is not just a strategic statement, but an intriguing story that resonates and will be remembered. Simple, engaging and credible – providing convincing arguments for sales presentations and specific metrics when defining technical specifications for new products or creating a marketing message.
Address your customers’ pain points
We build value propositions around a deeper understanding of the problems that your customers try to solve. That’s what makes our approach so unique. We make sure your customers’ perceive the added value instantly.
The profound customer understanding is gained with the help of the CFI methodology, a proprietary methodology applying the job-to-be-done logic.
Value proposition in practice
Some examples of solutions we have developed with our clients:
- Global nuts & bolts distributor: Creating an innovative offering that clearly differentiates them from competitors
- Consumer goods company: Develop a strategic brand message for the Indian market based on consumer workshops
- Plasma coating equipment: Define five compelling value stories for solution applications, ranging from hydro power turbines to oil drilling
- Global agrochemical company: Develop integrated service offerings for farmers that go far beyond single products
- Global OEM for thermic power plants: Develop a service concept to optimize plant life time of hydro power plants
- Swiss private bank: Create an innovative product concept solving problems of wealthy customers
You are convinced that you apply the right strategy and business model, but monthly sales figures speak a different language. You believe that there is potential for growth or profit increase that is not realized by your sales force. You observe that your salespeople sell on price and not on value.
Then it is time to consider a Vendbridge sales stimulation program. It will instantly raise revenues with a long-term positive impact on your sales staff and your sales strategy.
Rapid sales increase with lasting impact
Why are our sales stimulation programs so unique? Because our clients tell us that they work. We would like to add: That’s because they are cleverly designed – in contrast to most conventional sales training programs or theoretical consulting approaches.
Our three design principles are as follows:
- Establish a simple value selling framework that starts with the pain points of your customers: This allows to refocus on the external customer view
- Get both sales and management to moderate the workshops together with Vendbridge: This builds credibility and is extremely effective
- Use current cases studies: This allows your sales teams to immediately apply what they have learned in practice and sales will gain momentum immediately
Sales stimulation in practice
Three recent examples of sales stimulation programs we have developed and run with our clients:
- Global IT solution provider: From feature selling towards a value-oriented solution selling approach that is applied across all divisions in all regions
- International OEM components distributor: Revert a negative revenue trend via targeted sales campaigns based on value selling
- Industrial machinery equipment: Change from a reactive selling approach to a more pro-active selling behavior
The advice Vendbridge gave for our B2B sales strategy has changed the game.
Resulting in a better learning curve and most important more closed deals.
I would highly recommend hiring Vendbridge to work on sales acceleration.
Jim Hershkowitz, Co-founder Immodating
Your professionalism and commitment impressed me. My objective has been achieved.
Changing the mindset from: «What new business model can we develop?» to
«What are the opportunities for us, given our customer's true needs?»
Antonio, Head of Global Market Access
I thought I knew my clients, but what I discovered from your project
gave me a whole new perspective on how our clients think.
Paul, New Business Model Developer
When I committed the money for this project, I expected
one new insight. Now I got at least 8. It was worth every pound.
Laura, Head of Market Access UK
With Vendbridge we did an amazing project. They helped us open up our eyes
and have a different perspective that brought real good value to us.
TV Provider, Head of Innovation
Every time I visited India in the last 4 years, more questions occurred.
With this approach, I discovered solutions to answers.
I am now prepared to go ahead full steam with these ideas.
Lindt & Sprüngli of Switzerland, Area manager India
In the context of the project focusing on TV Widgets,
I was truly impressed by the power of your method,
the practicability of your tools and the inspiration that came from it.
Digital TV, Head of Innovation
Vendbridge’s advise was really amazing. The tools they recommended, like the pain
sheet, revealed totally new insights from our clients, which we can use to demonstrate
our value. I am sure this will instantly improve our sales results.
Technology Startup, CEO
You Vendbridge guys really inspired our relationship managers.
Global Retail Bank, Business Unit Head Asset Management