Market Development Strategy
Successful businesses are built by people, not technology. And successful product and brand franchises are built by first understanding the customer:
Who are they?
What makes them tick?
What motivation does your product or service satisfy?
We work with your organization as part of your team to understand and clarify:
- Product and customer life cycles
- Identify new market opportunities
- Build a strategy based on a set of key assumptions that can be refined and validated
- Establish, refine or redefine the key elements that create market advantaged, leadership positions.
Our approaches to client solutions include the following:
Market and Category Analysis: Marketers need a deep understanding of how markets and categories are structured now and how they are likely to evolve in the future.
360 Degree Assessments: What do customers, analysts, the media, partners, and your own organization consider relevant and important? How do the dots connect? And what are the possibilities for misalignment?
Customer Segmentation: All customers are not equal. Who are the “ideal customers for your product or service? Why? Who do they reference? What characteristics favour one group over another?
Product Positioning & Differentiation: How do you achieve “mental shelf space” with your customers and prospects? The answers are often surprisingly different based on a myriad of dynamics within any given category and segmentation model.
Channel Development & Optimization: A channel strategy is an important strategic consideration that should not be a function of simply having partners to serve as additional distribution.
Marketing Communication Strategy: The way you communicate should be influenced by what you need to communicate – and what your audience needs to hear.
Brand Strategy & Portfolio Management
Building a great brand in technology-based markets often means reinventing a generic category or commodity solution, making it special to a specific group of people, then using it to build a sustainable relationship with them. This is not the stuff of logos, trade dress, or tagline creation but rather of treating brands as tangible, sustaining business assets that can be actively managed for competitive advantage. We work with our clients to help them understand and optimize the power of their brand portfolios through focus and meaningful differentiation; align product roadmap priorities with how customers make brand choices; ensure delivery of a brand promise across the enterprise; and present their brands in the most compelling way possible.
Brand Strategy Development: Your brand is the sum of the good and the not-so-good experiences customers (and others) have — directly or indirectly — with your products, services, communications and people. Your brand strategy should be a direct extension of your business, marketing and operational strategy. We work in a rigorous but extremely time-efficient and cost-effective way, without the learning cycle necessary for “traditional” branding firms who typically do not have an intimate familiarity with technology-based products or markets, and the teams that manage such enterprises.
Brand & Product Strategy Alignment: There is often a disturbing lack of correlation and coherence between a company’s stated brand strategy and its product development process. We strive to improve business performance by bridging the gap between brand strategy, product strategy, and customer experience, ensuring alignment between a brand’s promise and what is actually delivered. This is done through a disciplined, metrics-driven process designed to optimize product development, improve resource allocation, speed up time to market, and significantly reduce R&D efforts that do not result in differentiated offers.
Brand Rationalization & Integration: Mergers, acquisitions, and divestments require a myriad of decisions concerning how new and existing brands should be positioned or repositioned to establish relevance with key constituencies; extended to maximize investment and growth; or consolidated to achieve greater efficiencies. EM can help you define what your brands should stand for over time, as well as help get you there with the tools, frameworks, and training to make product and brand M&A initiatives operate effectively.