Tag Archives: Solutions

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

The Value of Value

By Steve Robins

Value is Key to Solution Marketing

You might think that the most important aspect of marketing a solution would be what goes into it.  What goes into a solution are just a bunch of pieces, products, or components.  But value is about the benefit and cost of those components to the user or buyer.

Value is equal to the difference between perceived benefit and total cost

More specifically, value is equal to the difference between (1) the benefit as perceived by the user and (2) the total cost of the solution.  By perception I mean that the user or buyer must appreciate and want the resulting benefit.  In fact, if they don’t perceive it as a benefit to them, it’s not a benefit but is instead just a useless feature.

Value is interesting in many ways, some of which are counterintuitive and not so obvious.  Following are a few important examples – both obvious and not so obvious. Continue reading

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

Anticipation

By Steve Robins

Anticipation builds customer loyalty.

A few weeks back, I had a few “wow” experiences that demonstrated the power of anticipation.  No matter that they were almost mundane: each experience improved my perception of the brand/company, service or location.  And they offer great lessons for solution marketers.

Anticipation - ketchup in a bottleAnticipated receipt

After filling up with gas at the nearby Hess Gas Station, I saw that the  gas pump’s receipt printer was out of paper – which is a nuisance.  But when I walked into the store to pick up a receipt, the cashier already had my receipt ready – before I could utter a single word.  Wow!  I’d say that I was actually more impressed with her anticipating my receipt needs than I would have been had the printer actually had paper.  I’ve been filling up at this station because they had competitive gas prices.  Now I’ll do it because they have great service as well.   Continue reading

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Icebergs & Solution Launches

By Steve Robins

It’s what lurks below that drives solution launch success

Icebergs:  pretty, grand, glistening in the afternoon sun.  The stuff of movies.  And even disasters like the sinking of the Titanic.

And yes, these icy wonders share more than a few traits with solution launches.

The process of launching a new solution is much like an iceberg.  The most important trait?  Just like an iceberg, you see only 10% of the effort above water.  Up top and above the water, everything looks shiny and crisp.  Pretty even.  But just like an iceberg, a launch’s success is based on the 90% of effort, the foundation below the surface — the planning and preparation that sit well below the surface, invisible to the public and to many of your colleagues.  Oh, and yes, just like an iceberg, a bad launch can, well, sink a ship.  Yikes.

Let me explain.    Continue reading

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Filed under SEVA - Elements of Solution Marketing, SIVA - Elements of Solution Marketing, Software marketing, Solution, The Solution Marketing Blog

Secretaries, Typewriters and Solutions

This week’s news mentioned 2 intertwined stories, one of which is a hoax.

The Hoax

R.I.P. Typewriter

Last week, India’s Business Standard reported Typewriters about to become a page in history since an Indian typewriter producer was running out of the typewriters they stopped producing in 2009 (sounds kind of inevitable to me but I digress).  Subsequently England’s The Telegraph, The Wall Street Journal’s India site and no less august an institution than the Huff Post ran the same story.

Just one problem: as it turns out though, the typewriter (at least the electronic version) is far from dead – heck you can even pick one up at Staples according to the Washington Post.  (Thanks HuffPost and WashPost for debunking the story).

Continue reading

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The Second Chasm

– By Steve Robins

Prospects Need to Cross a Chasm Too

If you’re in software marketing, you’re aware of Geoffrey Moore’s book, Crossing the Chasm.  The premise of the book, born out at companies like Oracle and Documentum (since acquired by EMC) is that companies must evolve and cross the “chasm” as they move from serving the early adopters to serving the larger and more lucrative early majority.  That’s the “first chasm.”

The Second Chasm

But there’s actually a second, less-known chasm that relates to the first.  The second chasm is crossed not by your company, but by your prospects.  To be successful, your software company needs to help prospects to make that leap too.  Failure to do so may prevent your company from crossing the first chasm.   Continue reading

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Arrogance Is Not a Solution

– By Steve Robins

Arrogance contributed to Apple iPhone antenna woes

Continued from Apple: Honey I Forgot the Customer!

Solutions are driven by user needs.  Even innovative new offerings need to be based on the needs and habits of real users.  Apple’s iPone 4 debacle, aka “Antennagate”, came about in part because they failed to include actual users in their development cycle.


Continue reading

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Filed under Case Studies, Innovation, Solution Marketing, Solutions, The Solution Marketing Blog, User feedback, Value