“Business need” starts the B2B buying process

If you research “B2B buying process” you’ll come up with the steps that a business goes through in the B2B buying process. These include (1) Business need recognition (2) Developing specifications of what will meet the need (3) Request for proposals (RFP) (4) Comparison of proposals/bids and negotiate with suppliers (5) Purchase order placement (6) Delivery and receipt of goods or services (7) Evaluation of suppliers.

Forever 21 : What is your strength – that customers value?

It is sad to see that Forever 21 filed for bankruptcy. Their backstory is fascinating and the 5 minute video backstory of Korean immigrants achieving the “American Dream” by Business Insider is worth watching. 
Unlike the typical sad “decline of US malls”  story and rise of “online retail” the Forever 21 story has important lessons for all businesses. It is also an eerie reminder of the the New Coke fiasco,  To recap, Coca Cola did not realize in the eighties that customers did not drink Coke for taste but  it was all about being American – a much deeper meaning.

7 Questions for your Business Model

“A business model is the manner in which you provide value to your customer that is paid for (by whom – is considered in the questions below). You cover your costs and make a profit on a sustainable basis.”

If you are a small business, you rarely think of your business as having a business model. But it does. It does because the moment you have a single paying customer, she is paying for the value you create. It is another matter, if your business makes a profit consistently over the long term. Sustainable profit is why it is important to understand the business model concept.Here is a definition based on the highly cited article by David Teece.

Why its safe to put out most of your market research as web content

Businesses large and small seem scared of putting out their market research on their websites. Common concerns we have heard are: Our competitors will know how we think about the market Our market insights  are our “secret” – sauce- why share the recipe And the one we like best: Speech is silvery but silence isContinue reading “Why its safe to put out most of your market research as web content”

Dealing with the power and politics of B2B buying centers

We get frequent questions from innovative solution sellers about how to deal with the power and politics of B2B Buying Centers. This is after you have started talking with people at a prospective customer organization. And yet a deal doesn’t seem to be coming through.Here is our take and we hope this makes our dear readers feel better:

Front end of new projects: The challenge of engaging clients,bosses and colleagues

The primary challenge for their innovation teams, according to the Innovation head of a Fortune 50 corporation, is to consciously engage the bosses at the front end of the project. The bosses sign off on initial costs and then when things progress to the stage of making prototypes and trial production- the bosses suddenly wake up. “I never realized that there are such big costs involved,down the line…” is a common refrain.

India 7% growth rate: Ola,Uber and car pooling apps

Over the winter break India was an exhilarating and at times an overwhelming experience. The top growth rate of the world at 7% and young people moving fast in an ancient culture added to the exciting nature of the experience. Here are some examples: The Private Taxi Business is over and Ola and Uber haveContinue reading “India 7% growth rate: Ola,Uber and car pooling apps”

High velocity B2B New Product marketing: Ignore 5000 prospects

High velocity B2B marketing is critical for new B2B products, whether launched by innovative start-ups or by established organizations. You want to have a significant customer base for your new product as soon as possible. Market Segmentation is that early step in marketing strategy that urges the marketer to focus resources for results. In aContinue reading “High velocity B2B New Product marketing: Ignore 5000 prospects”

New Product B2B marketers and the junior manager prospect: problem or opportunity?

No junior or middle manager would like to admit that they have a problem when faced with a new B2B solution that has the potential to vastly improve efficiency or reduce cost. Such an admission involves potentially admitting that the manager is not doing her job. The risks seem just too much with a new supplier, legacy systems and the fear of the unknown. A classic case of marketers trying to promote value as buyers try to reduce risk. And we are not just referring to purchasing and supply management folk- but the potential users of the new product that the marketers is trying to convince in the buying center.

Is your innovation R&D intensive or customer intensive?

R&D Intensive innovation: It was a bio-technology strategy executive who explained when asked why it is hard to produce “made in the garage” innovations in biotechnology. The problem is that in biotechnology and pharmaceutical research you need labs, teams and a lot of money and time to come up with a blockbuster cure. You cannotContinue reading “Is your innovation R&D intensive or customer intensive?”

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