As the barriers to entry continue to get lower, technology product lifecycles are becoming increasingly shorter. If you don’t want price to become the single biggest buying driver, you’ve got to find your way out of the commodity rat race. Differentiation and innovation are your two best options!
Differentiation boils down to unique positioning in your sales and marketing efforts with your products and company reputation serving up the proof points. Try creating a unique theme that strikes a nerve with your target customers by using a phrase that’s common in their industry. Use that theme as the umbrella message in all of your marketing and sales communications. Dispense with buzz words such as ROI, efficiency, optimize, maximize revenue, etc. Remember, it has to sound different and mean something different than the competition’s positioning.
Innovation and differentiation often go hand-in-hand. In B2B, the easiest and best approach to innovation is to look for opportunities that are upstream or downstream of where your products are used today. Remember, your customers have silos across their organization that inhibit their ability to be better at whatever they do. Innovation might be something as simple as a solution that eliminates one or more departmental silos. The upside to the customer is huge and you now have something tangible to differentiate your solutions from the competition.
In B2B, it all starts by redefining your “customer” to encompass the entire customer organization. When you see them the same way they see themselves, you’ll uncover more opportunities to make them successful, and keep yourself out of the commodity rat race.
If you want to start practicing product management and product marketing that’s designed specifically for B2B/B2B2c organizations, contact Proficientz to discuss how our B2B Product Management Framework and hands-on training programs can keep you two steps ahead of the competition.