Brand according to Me
Brand Strategy flows from, and supports Business Strategy
“Brand" is the full experience and the associations that result from
interactions of all kinds with our company.
Brand Management is not limited to the logo and look and feel of collateral.
It is communicated in every touch point any given person has with
us, regardless of whether he is a prospect, a customer, an
analyst, blogger, competitor, vendor, investor or even a casual observer. It
encompasses management of communication and full brand experience
processes across the full customer journey / lifecycle
(awareness, prospect, customer, upsell, upgrade, retirement).
The tone and manner in which the receptionist answers the phone, the visual
appearance and helpfulness of our website, the focus of the support team on
solving the problem for the customer rather than deflecting blame to
competitors, the ease of use of our solutions, the professionalism of our sales
staff, the logo and our collateral, our marketing programs and content, and our
predictable and consistent delivery on our promises are all supportive of the
brand. Consequently, everyone in the company participates in Marketing.
B2B Brand Strategy
Define the desired Brand
Focus the Brand
– business value, not
– Identify an “emotional
Pricing is set based on
Brand Equity (the
premium a customer will
pay for your offering)
Goal is to move your
prospects from Brand
Awareness to Brand
Ricardo Guimares, Thymus Branding
São Paulo, Brazil
“Your brand is what your customers say it is.”
“The value of a brand belongs to the market,
and not to the company. The company in this
sense is a tool to create value to the
brand…Brand in this sense lives outside the
company, not in the company… Brand is an open
B2B Technology Brand Components
Business Value: The decision to
deploy this product is justified
and proven by metrics. (low
Thought Leadership: The
vendor is the (perceived)
Technical Evaluator /
Job Effectiveness: This
solution helps me do
my job better.
business is growing and
Their customers are
Value Delivered: The
business and functional
promises made were
It all comes down to this:
Successful Businesses Rest on the Golden Rule
• In business as in life, you must treat others
(customers, prospects, and colleagues) the way you wish to be
treated. Strong, positive human relationships are essential.
• There is nothing more powerful that the word of mouth effect
spread by happy and passionate customers who will eagerly
recommend your company to others. It is the source of all
• Well performing, customer-driven organizations are committed
to elating their customers, so that they come back for
more, and evangelize to others on your behalf.
• Companies that do this well are able to scale back marketing
costs, and become unbeatable in their markets.
• This is what being “customer led” is all about.
Fellow, Bain & Co.
Father of NPS (Net Promoter Score)
The Ultimate Question is this:
“On a scale of 1 to 10, how likely is it that you would
recommend this company to a friend or colleague?”
Good Profits or Bad Profits?
Profits earned at the expense of customer relationships
Whenever a customer feels misled, ignored, or coerced, then profits from that customer are “bad”.
Bad profits arise when companies save money by delivering a lousy customer experience.
Bad profits are often driven by the relentless focus of management on making the numbers in the short
term, and the incentives they consequently drive into the organization.
Bad Profits create a legion of “Detractors” who tell others not to do business with you, which is
impossible to overcome.
Profits earned with customers enthusiastic cooperation by delighting them so they willingly come back
for more, and tell others
Satisfied customers become strong “Promoters”. They are in effect part of your marketing organization.
Net Promoter Score (NPS) works because (unlike other metrics) it is linked to both market share
It is therefore the only measure of customer satisfaction that matters.
NPS needs to be a part of every executive’s bonus. It is a business-critical priority, and your most
Why NPS matters
• In a socially connected world, there is no
substitute for positive word of mouth
– Detractors are far more vocal than Promoters
• Without customers happily willing to support
your brand, it is difficult to achieve rapid growth
• NPS has to be a way of life. Make it part of your
bonus and incentive structure.
– Business Unit GMs at GE who have falling NPS for two
consecutive quarters are fired.
Geoffrey Moore Positioning Statement
• For (target customers)
Who (have the following problem)
Our product is a (describe the product or
That provides (cite the breakthrough capability)
Unlike (reference competition),
Our product/solution (describe the key point of
Business Model Generation
• what are you offering them? what is that
• getting done for them? do they care?
• which activities do you need to perform
well in your business model?
• what is crucial?
• what relationships are you establishing with each
• personal? automated? acquisitive? retentive?
• which partners
• who do you need
to rely on?
• what is the
• which key
• which customers and
users are you serving?
• which jobs do they
really want to get
• which resources underpin your business model?
• which assets are essential?
• how does each customer segment
want to be reached?
• through which interaction points?
• what are customers really willing
to pay for? how?
• are you generating transactional
or recurring revenues?
Don Thorston’s “Whole Product” Concept
The solution must solve the customer’s whole problem, not be
an interchangeable a piece of the solution
1. Does It Solve A Problem? - Have you solved a problem the
customer recognizes. Have you identified the customers pain. If
not, you have a vitamin and not a pain killer. You want a pain killer.
2. Is It Easy To Understand? - Seriously, 5 words should do it. 2
words is better. Do the "mom test”: If mom doesn't understand
it, change something until she does.
3. Is It Easy To Get? - Have you removed the barriers between you
and having your customers use your product? In a 2.0 world we
are talking free trials, no cost, fast, easy. Get it in their hands or
nothing good will happen.
4. Is It Easy To Use? - At Apple the rule was, "1 minute after they
start to use it , they feel like calling their friends”. " You will not
believe what I just got".
5. Is It Easy To Share? - In this ultra-connected world, your
customers are your marketing department. If your customers are
not marketing your product, you have problems. We used to call it
evangelism, now we call it sharing. Your product needs to have
"embedded viral components" - active mechanisms built directly
into the application that assume your customers will want to tell
everyone they know. Make it easy for them to do so.
Source: Don Thorston, Marketing 2.0
Product Strategy & Management
Managing Existing Products
“Simple” Wins. Investing in Ease of Use tends to be your most powerful lever
EOU is more appreciated by customers than new features (“The Excel Effect”)
Focus on making your existing products simpler and more intuitive to install and use
Get a User Experience (UX) specialist involved
Finding New Growth Opportunities
– Starts with intimacy with customers, and developing a deep understanding of their most
pressing problems effecting their ability to get things done
– The thought process should be independent of bias from your existing product set. Don’t
approach it by first asking, “How can we extend what we already have to sell more of it?”
Make plans that are aligned with the broad trends of our time
– The Cloud : Data and Applications are being drawn there; Internal IT is going away, evolving
away from management of plumbing to management of data, applications
– Mobile: The PC/Desktop as we’ve known it is going away
– Analytics: Extracting business value and intelligence from data
– Collaboration: The next source of competitiveness , internally and with customers
– SaaS and Managed Services: There is little interest in deploying new enterprise software
apps on prem
High Tech Differentiation
• Most commonly used; an ”easy” strategy
• Endlessly adding new features does not give sustained
differentiation (”trench warfare”)
• Can contradict ease of use
• Reduced electricity bill
• Longer recording time
• Faster Internet access
Ease of Use
• A very important vector of differentiation
• Sometimes technology advances do not deliver enhanced
productivity, because of usability problems
• A big challenge in an era when everything is integrated in a
single device (mobile phone)
• More and more important in maturing markets
• Hardware Design & User Interface Design (Apple)
Longer battery life
More responsive UI
Technology advances complemented with good usability
Often a crucial factor in buyer’s decision making process
First to Market, or Fast Follower?
First to Market
• Market share advantage
• Earlier market & customer
• Influence on markets and
• Possibility to build entry barriers
• Image benefits, a glamorous
• Big risks!
• Wait until market is clarified
• Avoid market education costs
• Nearer in time to eventual
market, easier to predict
• Ability to use newer technology
• Fast means fast!
• Advantages of being fast:
Jump ahead and stay ahead
• Managed risk
Key Question: How confident are you that you have
the market timing right?
Product Portfolio Management:
Where to Invest
• Program States
Light or Zero
Make the numbers
• Resource Maps: invest in growth
Evaluating Product Opportunities
• Checklist for making the “Go / No Go Decision”: Do we need an
Offering in this (new) space?
Market Opportunity (e.g. size, growth)?
Unresolved problems that the product will address?
Is the problem urgent and pervasive?
Are there buyers who are willing to pay to have them resolved ?
Does the product fit the strengths and competencies of the organization?
Does this product provide the organization with a sustainable competitive
• Then decide HOW to address it: the BUY/BUILD/PARTNER Decision
Time to Market Need
Building a Sales & Marketing Machine
Diagram the Buying Process
Tech Champion Buying
Process with Company Steps
• Funnel Behavior
– Conversion Rates: between deal stage
– Close Rate
– Duration of deals in each stage
• Win/Loss Ratio
• ACV: Annual Contract Value
– by segment, vs time
• CAC: Customer Acquisition Cost
• LTV: Lifetime Value
The Emerging Social Enterprise
The existence of relationships between people that drive mutual benefit are what
defines “a society”
The Social Web is enabling human relationships and the ways we communicate
It is set to turbo-charge productivity and innovation through ubiquitous and effective
collaboration. It is the next major driver of competitiveness.
Enterprises will become increasingly transparent
Customers Relationships become personal and intimate
Those who nurture and develop the deepest, most intimate relationships will win
Those who collaborate well will get a big velocity advantage
Everyone will participate
David Meerman Scott
Marketing is more than Advertising
PR is for more than just a mainstream media audience
You are what you publish
People want authenticity, not spin
People want participation, not propaganda
Instead of causing one-way interruption, marketing is about delivering content at
just the precise moment your audience needs it
Marketers must shift their thinking from mainstream marketing to the masses to a
strategy of reaching vast numbers of underserved audiences via the web
PR is not about your boss seeing your company on TV. It’s about your buyers
seeing your company on the web.
Marketing is not about your agency winning awards. It’s about your organization
The Internet has made public relations public again, after years of almost exclusive
focus on media.
Companies must drive people into the purchase process with great online
Blogs, online video, e-books, news releases, and other forms of online content let
organizations communicate directly with buyers in a form they appreciate.
On the web, the lines between marketing and PR have blurred.
• Developing an understanding
of the personal motivations
and professional goals of all
those who influence decisions
about your solution is key to
understanding how to best
communicate with them in a
way that (a) is welcome, and
(b) has impact.
• “Know the goals, and let
content drive the action.”
• Search Engine Optimization &
Social Media Integration
• Lead Nurturing
• Newsletter & Media Room
– Content Curation
– Thought Leadership
Linking Social Media to Business
Social Media Strategy
Clear Objectives are Key to Successful Social Media
The Social Technographics Ladder
users tend to
Forrester Social Technographics Tool
• They can answer any question you can think up
• But they can’t tell you what you never thought to ask
• What you never thought to ask might be the most
important question for your business
• You only hear from people willing to respond; You can’t
assume the results are truly representative
Criteria for selecting new social
1. Does it enable people to connect with each other in
2. Is it effortless to sign up for?
3. Does it shift power from institutions to people?
4. Does the community generate enough content to
5. Is it an open platform that invites partnerships?
Participation in Social Web Activities
(at least monthly)
Watch video from another user
Read online forums
Visit social networking sites
Read customer ratings/reviews
Update/maintain a profile on a social networking site
Add comments to someone's page on a social networking site
Contribute to online forums
Listen to or download audio
Comment on someone else's blog
Upload photos to a public website
Post/update/maintain a blog
Listen to podcasts
Use a desktop widget
Upload audio you produced
Tag webpages, photos
Contribute to a wiki
• Pre-requisite: Writers have to want to engage in dialogue. You need drive.
• Know who you want to reach and what you want to accomplish
Start by listening
Identify the goal for the blog
Develop a plan: One blog or many?
Rehearse: Write 5-10 posts before going live
Develop an Editorial Process: For Planning & Review of Content
Design the Blog and it’s connection to your site
Marketing plan: to help people find the blog
Authenticity: Be honest, even when things go wrong
Write in first person; be helpful, not partisan
Social Media Management Systems
Enable social media teams to manage multiple accounts and
workflow across cross-functional teams
Allows teams to organize customer data into one repository across the enterprise
It’s more than just adding fields to an existing database.
SCRM requires corporations to connect APIs from brand monitoring and customer
databases, like e-mail marketing and CRM systems
Find out what your brand stands for as perceived from the outside
Understand how buzz is shifting
Save research money
Find sources of influence
Manage PR crises
Generate new product and marketing ideas
Brand Monitoring & Analytics
The Social Web, Step1: Talking
Brian Haven, former Forrester Analyst
“The funnel has outlived its usefulness as a metaphor. Face
it: Marketers no longer dictate the path people take, nor do
they lead the dialogue.”
Once people are aware of you product, a new dynamic kicks
in: people learning from each other
Good methods for Talking to the Social Web
Post a viral video: Great for punching through the noise
Tap an emotional thread based on Personas
Engage in social networks and user-generate content sites
Best solution for word of mouth problems
Join the blogosphere
Good fit for complex solutions, technologies
Create a community
When customers insist on depending on each other, not you
Step 2: Energizing
Trust in Sources of Information
Step 3: Energizing Passionate Advocates
The most honest form of marketing is word of mouth from
Can’t be faked, but can be encouraged
– Tap into enthusiasm with Ratings & Reviews: Works best in retail and
others with direct customer contact
– Create a community: For customers who are truly passionate
• ConstantContact “ConnectUp” gets 10% customer participation. 30%
generate referrals for $60 credit: Customer LTV is $1,500
• High failure rate overall
– Participate in and energize online communities of your brand
Consider propensities of the customer base first. Design
strategies that match existing relationships, an provide ways
for customers to extend those relationships.
Step 4: Embracing
• Embracing means making customers an integral part of the way
you innovate, with both products/services and process
• Borders of the Enterprise become porous
• Passionate fans and SME’s get directly involved
• A “customer advisory board on steroids”
• Leading Authors
Eric von Hippel
Patricia B. Seybold
Patricia Seybold Group
Don Tapscott & Anthony Williams
Moxie Insight / New Paradigm
Lean Start-Up Model
Lean Start-Up Model
Steven Gary Blank: “The Four Steps to the Epiphany”
Eric Ries: “Lessons Learned: The Lean Start-Up”
– www.startuplessonslearned.com; HBS EIR
Marty Cagan: “Inspired: How to create products customers love”
The (broken) Product Development Model (An “all in” bet on nailing the plan up front)
Customer Development Model (Build concept, test, validate before scaling the company)
The Customer Development Process
Scale the Company
Build a repeatable, field-tested sales roadmap for the sales/mktg team to follow later
Prove the model by taking money from customers (confirm the “willingness to pay”)
Find out who the customers for your offering really are; Whether the problem you believe you are
solving is important to them; No guesswork, “get out of the building”; Confirm there are customers and
a market for the vision.
Create end user demand and drive it into the sales channels
Transition out of informal, learning, discovery-oriented mode, to formal departments with VPs of
Sales, Marketing and BusDev.