B2B – Single target market – deep analysis

B2B, Marketing, Methodologies, single target market, Value

I keep writing about the Single Target Market on a consistent basis. For any new marketing initiatives this has to be your starting point. As I have mentioned in my posts earlier also, if you’re in the B2B space then this becomes a lot more complex.

The decision making is much more challenging in the B2B space. Depending on the size of the company, the research would be done maybe 2 layers below the actual decision makers.

Now when you think of a Single Target Market in case of B2B, you then need to go deep, to analyze the revenue ranges, the industry, the use cases, the actual people whom you will need to talk to etc.

Once you have mapped the people, roles, you will need to figure out a way to reach them. This is critical because there are both technology gate keepers (like spam filters) and human gate keepers as well. In addition these people already have incumbents who are providing them with similar products or services. So they won’t change their supplier in a hurry.

Which means you will need to have a clear methodology to ensure that you figure out a way to identify the dissonance with the incumbent and then provide value much larger than the incumbent.

By focusing on the Single Target Market you will soon understand the challenges all the customers could be facing with all the incumbents. This will help you get customers faster.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!

Marketing is Education – Part 5

differentiation, education, Marketing, Methodologies, Positioning, route to market, travel, Trust

In my first 3 posts I was talking about the concept of how education can elevate your position in the market. I have used consultants as examples, I have used Indian brands also. Yesterday I wrote about a French perfume company. Today I will talk about an internationally well known tourism industry brand Trip Advisor.

The best thing about TripAdvisor is that it never tries to sell you anything. You can go look at people’s reviews of hotels, places etc. You can figure out what people liked about a place, what were the best spots etc. All of this is very conveniently put up front. As a matter of fact if you will search about a given location or a hotel in a location – you will typically find Trip Advisor in the top 10 searches on Google. And this inspite of the fact that most of the other search results will talk about the cheapest fares etc.

Initially I used to look at the Trip Advisor ratings for a hotels. What were the other travellers talking about. Slowly I got hooked to the idea of going to the site for everything when I was planning a trip to a place which I had not visited in many many years.

Trip Advisor has a sister site called Viator. So while I was searching for the best places to visit, tickets and other possibilities in New York I also got an option to buy the Travel Pass from them. Guess what, I bought it from them.

If you go on the web to search, you would get a lot of deals giving the same pass at lower rates. But because Trip Advisor has created such a trust relationship because of their education and unbiased user reviews, I didn’t think of even looking for lower options. Now its a standard practice for me to see what Trip Advisor or Viator are offering , what are the user ratings and then buying it from there.

Now does it mean that everyone who comes on the TripAdvisor site also ends up buying from them or their sister site. Absolutely not. And that would be true of all education based methodologies. Not everyone will buy from you. But that would be true for any methodology / positioning that you use. You could choose to have the lowest cost methodology for your positioning, but you would still not get the whole market to yourself. These companies differentiate themselves with the education they offer and create what Jay Abraham calls as position of Pre-Eminence.

Since I like to work with and give business to people I trust, all the examples I have given, till date ,are of companies that have used education to create that trust with me.

Till next time then. See how you can use education to create a marketing pull for your product or service.

Carpe Diem!!!

Precision like the Swiss – how to use it in your marketing

Marketing, messaging, Methodologies

When we were kids, we were always told about how precise the Swiss were in terms of their engineering and how a Swiss watch would be accurate for years to come….those were the days of the mechanical watches. As you roamed the streets of Geneva during those days , you could see shops where there were people with magnifying glasses on their eyes, putting in the various gears of the watch.

Now I went back to Geneva after a very very long time about two years back. Those watchmakers are gone. I wanted to showcase those watchmakers to my wife and son but couldn’t.

However what has not changed is the precision that the Swiss follow in all walks of their life. As usual, I had made Geneva my base and bought the Swiss Travel Pass which allowed us the use of all their train, bus and boats. If you are short on time and want to visit multiple places, the travel pass is the most convenient thing.

Everyone knows how beautiful Switzerland is and how safe it is etc. etc.

I am not sure however if anyone knows or speaks about, how synchronised the whole transit transport system in Switzerland is. You get only 3-4 minutes between interchanges, but you can be sure that you will catch all your linking transport. And this is not only about trains or only buses, but all the trains, boats and buses.

One day we decided to go to Interlaken from Geneva. After reaching Interlaken and admiring all the beauty from the land level we took the …..to the restaurant on the highest point. After having our lunch over there we decided to take a boat ride on the lake – all three of us love boat rides. When we reached the boat station, the next boat was not until about 3:30 PM ( I don’t remember the exact times now). The whole tour would take about 2 hours. So I was worried that we would not be able to take the train back to Geneva via Berne from Interlaken. We then started thinking in terms of avoiding the boat ride because otherwise we would reach Geneva past midnight. While Geneva is very safe, I generally have a fear of being so late in a foreign land.

Now this is where the drama comes. The steward at the boat was extremely friendly. Before he started boarding I got talking to him, sharing my dilemma. Once I told him the final destination he made out a itinerary for me, so that we would get a ride on the boat as well as not reach Interlaken at midnight.

So we got on the boat. After about 25 minutes of a boat ride in a chilly winter afternoon in Interlaken, at the second stop he asked us to get down. Right opposite the docking area was a small station. The challenge with the small station was that there was very little English so we were not sure if the train that was coming us would take us. But the steward had given us the train number and the destination.

So exactly in 12 minutes or so the train arrived. We sat in the train to reach the mainline station where would catch the train coming from Interlaken. The challenge – there was only a 3 minute gap and the platforms where the two trains were going to park were quite a walk. But our train reached there exactly as promised. We moved at a brisk pace to reach the other platform and to our surprise, the train we had to catch was just entering the platform as we reached.

I haven’t seen such precision, such attention to minute details across different transport systems in different cities like I saw it there.

Its things like these which make Switzerland such a “hot” tourist destination.

Why all this story – because if you can anticipate in advance how will each of your marketing pieces work and what will be the next steps and who will do what, when the prospect takes which step, then your whole system will work smoothly to get customers into your funnel and pass them on.

If on the other hand if any of the pieces are mis-aligned, then , there will be friction in your marketing which the customer will sense and you will delay his buying.

Till next time see how precisely you can match all the moving parts.

Carpe Diem!!!

Marketing is Education – Part 3

education, Marketing, Methodologies, Technology

In this part today we will look at another set of great marketing successes who have used education as a method to differentiate themselves and made me their customer.

Example 1: Jay Abraham. I referred to him in the first part of this series. He is big time into giving away knowledge free of cost. There’s so much knowledge which I have gained from him, that when I could afford I started investing in his programs. Due to him I learned that there are only 3 ways to grow a business. The strategy of pre-eminence. The marketing Parthenon etc.

Example 2: Motilal Oswal.This is one of the biggest brokerages in India. When I was starting to learn about the stock markets, I read a lot of the Berkshire letters to the shareholders by Warren Buffet. I read a massive amount of books on the subject. The only challenge was that all the content was international. I was looking for content specifically for India.

That’s when I found the Wealth Creation studies that have been authored by Raamdeo Aggarwal each year for the last 20 odd years. These studies don’t talk about their company at all except maybe for the methodologies they use. Due to that, you gain trust.

When I read those twenty odd reports, I was able to understand the Indian stock markets. So when I had to choose my brokerage, I chose motilaloswal. There were others who were offering cheaper options but because I had trust in motilaloswal, I took them.

Its however difficult to create pure education based content and put it out. Even though I am so much in favor of creating educational content around your offerings, its especially tough when you are in the technology space where there’s so much happening. So I also struggle to get this to happen.

Having said that, I would still think its the best way to build trust with customers.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!