Sales and Marketing - Enhancing Value and Competitiveness
You could be selling more and achieving higher profitability by applying the strategies, architectures and technology approaches offered by Colts Neck Solutions. It all centers on using IT creatively and collaboratively to create a "gain" for your customer. If you are the "heat of battle" - tough customer needs are immediately at hand - see our "sales support" page.
The critical success factor in "gain creation" is your level of creativity in packaging IT-related capabilities to address customer problems or, even better, to enhance the customer's own value to its customers, owners and regulators. If you create a "gain" that otherwise would not exist, it then becomes a matter of positioning and sales skills as to how the "gain" is shared.
Often, your company's products and services "are what they are," and you have little or no latitude to change the products and services themselves. Indeed, your offerings may be regulated, even further decreasing the opportunity to differentiate or add value by changing the products or services themselves.
Therefore, gains are likely to stem from improvements or added services with respect to the "surround" of your product or service. One major theme is the use of your organization's capabilities to streamline or eliminate work, cost or risk that ordinarily would be borne by the customer. In doing so, you almost always want to use approaches that are different from the customer's "as is" process, because you probably cannot create a "gain" merely by substituting your resources for the customer's.
From a competitive perspective, these gains need not be huge to be significant. In close competition - and at the "short list" level, most competition is close, a mere 1% differential may be decisive. As a benchmark, in the New York City Marathon, the top finisher's time was only about 1% faster than that of the runner who came in fifth and about 3% faster than the runner who came in tenth. One attitude that discourages useful innovation is discounting those that seem to be small.
Adding "Solution" Dimensions, Often Online
Your customer may benefit from your value-added service
anywhere throughout the procurement/use lifecycle.
Obviously, the procurement and supply chain processes
could be automated, or better automated. Less obviously,
the customer's policy compliance, quality, safety,
environmental, regulatory, or post-acquisition maintenance
processes might benefit from improved access to your
firms "knowledge," process monitoring capabilities or other forms of IT and communications. services
The critical ingredient is that the value added service be something that addresses a customer felt need. There is a distinction between a "solution" and various forms of customer "self-service" - e.g., enabling the customer to order or check invoice balances online. Some online services may in the customer's view be merely a necessary evil.
Just as suppliers may discard opportunities that seem "small," there is a tendency to ignore customer's "felt" needs in favor of the supplier's own sense of what those needs should be. There is also a tendency to neglect the interests of secondary, but potentially helpful "stakeholders." Indeed, not only can the packaging of IT help you influence stakeholders all across the sourcing spectrum, it can enable you to engage influencers that might ordinarily not even be interested in you.
The overall message regarding the integration trends, options and experiences outlined in this web site and on www.XMLoptimization.com is that you have new, affordable opportunities to help the customer. What is critical are matters such as packaging, timing, and effective communications, all of which Colts Neck Solutions is available to address.