What business are you in?

Sounds like a simple question, everyone should be able to answer that right? But ask yourself, do you really know what you do for your customers?  What value do you provide them so that they will pay you money?

If you can come up with a statement that answers that question, ruthlessly appraise it. Is that REALLY what your customers are after?

If you work for an SaaS accounting provider, the answer could be "We  offer software  so customers can keep their accounts"  

or it could be "We help customers keep score with their business"  or "We help customers manage their cashflows"  

The examples in the second paragraph describe what customers actually do.  Because of this, the focus is more precise from the provider end, and more relevant from a customer end. 

The IT industry is guilty en masse  of forgetting this. We think its all about the technology, as if this is somehow important to the customer .

SIs depend on IT complexity, building their businesses around tying together heterogeneous …IT systems (infrastructure, applications, etc.) so that they work together

The customer actually doesn't want an IT system, they want an outcome.  They want a system to know if their business is winning or loosing (accounting), to keep in contact with each other (email, telephony), to provide their customers with information on where their delivery is (track n trace, RFID)…

If you get this philosophy clear within your business, you will start talking customer speak, making more relevant products and find whole markets willing to listen. Untill you do, you are committing marketing malpractice,

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