Category Archives: Solution Marketing

Predicting a Solution’s Value

Predicting valuePredictive lead scoring can identify the leads that will place the greatest value on your solution – and pay the highest price.

Value, the difference between the benefit that a customer receives and the total cost to achieve that benefit, is central to solution marketing.  But value is also closely tied to lead scoring as well, with major implications for your company’s revenue and profitability.  As I recently wrote in SearchCRM,

A lead score predicts the likelihood that a given lead will ultimately convert into a closed deal. The higher the score, the more likely that a lead will turn into a sale. The score may incorporate predictors such as the lead’s current challenges and technologies, the presence of an active and budgeted project, selected demographic/firmographic data, and even frequency of activity.

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How Apple Creates a Future that Sells

AplWatch-HomeScreen-PR-PRINT_2Today Apple announced additional details of AppleWatch as well as a new, slimmer (!) MacBook line at a media event in San Francisco.  Apple is an iconic company and their innovation can provide helpful lessons, many of which apply to solution marketers. Which takes me to the AppleWatch: Needing to be tethered to a iPhone via WiFi, and carrying a not-insignificant price for an optional gizmo, it’s not clear how well this new product will perform I the market.  But if anyone can make a go of it, Apple can.  Here’s why. Continue reading

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Filed under Case Studies, Pricing, Solution, Solution Marketing, Solution Marketing Strategy, Solutions, The Solution Marketing Blog, Value

Product Marketing in an Agile Environment – Recap from ProductCamp Boston

Reprinted from Gail Ferreira’s B2B Solution Marketing Insights Blog with changes

agileEd note: My biggest takeaway from this discussion was that marketing/product marketing needs to contribute strategically to the roadmap (even in an agile environment).  The roadmap needs to work not only to support customers and prospects but also marketing launches and timeframes (which of course also support customers and prospects as well).  -Steve Robins

ProductCamp Boston 2013 was again another great event!  From a discussion facilitated by Steve Robins, I wanted to share some insights on “Product Marketing in an Agile Environment”.

Agile processes do impact marketing, particularly when product roadmaps don’t proceed as anticipated.  For example, using Steve’s company as an example, he noted that:   Continue reading

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Solution Marketing @ The Boston Startup School

By Steve Robins

Solution Marketing for Startups

A few weeks back, I had the opportunity to teach a one-day solution marketing class at the Boston Startup School, located in the Harvard Innovation Lab.

Learn to Do

If you have the opportunity to teach, learn, network or otherwise participate with Boston Startup School, jump on it!  Run by startup incubator TechStars, the new program helps “young professionals to learn the skills needed to have an immediate and positive impact on the startup they join.”  Wondering what’s on their minds?  Check out the new blog by the sales and marketing classes, www.GrowthNinja.com, which states that…

 You don’t have to start a company to be an entrepreneur.  Entrepreneurship is a mindset.  It’s a healthy discontent with the status quo that brings together teams dedicated to making the world a better place.  Entrepreneurs include all members of a startup team, from the CEO to the summer intern.

…and I couldn’t agree more. Continue reading

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Filed under Case Studies, Classes, Overviews, Presentations, SEVA - Elements of Solution Marketing, Solution Marketing, Solutions, The Solution Marketing Blog

Keynote at ProductCamp Boston: The Invisible Customer

By Steve Robins

Join me On June 9 at Microsoft Cambridge for ProductCamp Boston 2012!

ProductCamp BostonI’ve always been passionate about ProductCamp – I’ve been speaking at ProductCamp Boston since it began in 2009 and have been leading the marketing team since 2011.  So I’m very honored to be delivering the keynote presentation this year.

The theme for ProductCamp Boston 2012 is Customers First!  And it’s a fitting theme since customers are so central to the success of our products and solutions, companies, and even our careers.

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Filed under Presentations, ProductCamp, ProductCamp Boston, Solution Marketing

Oscar’s Inconvenient Truths

By Steve Robins

Watching Sunday’s Oscar awards, I was struck by… the importance – “and inconvenience” –  of customer feedback in multiple forms:

  • Inconvenient focus groups – The mock focus group screening (gasp!) the Wizard of Oz.  Very funny but it points to the frustration that artists often feel around Hollywood focus groups that disagree with their artistic vision.  And they’re not alone either.  It may be inconvenient but those customers do hold the purse strings, so they’re kind of unavoidable after all.
  • Inconvenient innovations – Billy Crystal’s jabs at bankrupt Kodak, whose name (at least for now) graces the Oscar theater.  Hooked on film until it was too late, Kodak missed the inconvenient truth that film was less important than capturing and sharing images in the easiest manner possible.  The very company that invented digital photography found that truth inconvenient and now faces a very different and more painful inconvenience – bankruptcy.
  • Inconvenient movie-consumption – The Oscar ceremony focused again and again on the movie theater experience with many references back to the good old days.  Those good old days will indeed live on – but only in people’s memories.  Although more people attend movie theaters than theme parks (duh), theater admissions are declining as people consume movies at home on TV, DVDs and iPads.  Instead of reminiscing about the good old days, the industry would be better served to focus on the bright future of entertainment everywhere – on mobile, tablets, at home etc.

Customer feedback may seem inconvenient.  But not listening to customer feedback delivers the ultimate inconvenience.

 

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Beyond Products: Solution Marketing

By Steve Robins

February 16 Presentation to the BPMA

 

TBPMAhanks to everyone who attended Thursday’s presentation at the Boston Product Management Association, Beyond Products: Solution Marketing.  You helped to make it one of the best discussions I’ve ever led on solution marketing.

You can find the Beyond Products: Solution Marketing presentation slides as well as the Solution Marketing Framework, along with other solution marketing content on Slideshare.

          
I hope you’ll continue the discussion in a variety of ways:

  • Before you do anything else, make sure to join the Solution Marketing Pros group on LinkedIn where you can share your successes and get help with your challenges from other solution marketers.  The group includes folks from leading companies around the world including…

    Acronis, Adobe, ADP, Akamai, Amazon, Ariba, Aspen Technology, Autonomy (HP), Box, Cisco, CSC, Dell, Eloqua, EMC, Endeca, Epicor, FirstBest, Gartner, HCL, Hitachi, Honeywell, H-P, IBM, Informatica, Iron Mountain, KANA Software, Kronos, Level 3 Communications, Lionbridge, McAfee, Microsoft, Misys, Motorola, NetApp, Nortel, Nuance, Oracle, Orange, Pegasystems, Pitney Bowes, Progress Software, Red Hat, Salesforce.com, SAP, Sapient, Seagate Technology, Siemens, SONY, SunGard, Symantec, Tata, TELUS,  TIBCO, Time Warner Cable, Tripwire, Verizon, Vertex, Wipro

  • Follow my Twitter stream for the latest solution marketing news.
  • Check out additional articles on The Solution Marketing Blog – and be sure to comment!
  • Come back for next month’s solution pricing presentation by Jim Geisman
  • Contact me if you have additional questions, s.robins [at] SolutionMKT [dot] com

Special thanks to the great folks at BPMA for organizing this event.

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Filed under Case Studies, Presentations, SEVA - Elements of Solution Marketing, Solution Framework, Solution Marketing, Solution Marketing Framework, Solution Marketing Strategy, The Solution Marketing Blog