New Product Blueprinting
Front-end innovation for B2B organic growth

Articles

The cornerstone of our thought leadership is Dan Adams’ landmark book on B2B innovation, New Product Blueprinting. We continue to publish practical articles that teach principles of B2B organic growth such as the selections below.

Business to Business (B2B)

  • 5 Growth Risks You Can Stop Taking Don't overlook these 5 hidden risks when you develop new products for B2B markets: 1) customer detachment, 2) narrow targets, 3) internal bias, 4) competitive blind spots, and 5) low findability.
  • B2B Customer Interviews: Are They Different? If you are using older voice-of-customer methods (e.g. DFSS or QFD), you’re sub-optimizing. For B2B your methods must achieve 3 goals: 1) collaborate deeply, 2) pre-sell your innovation, and 3) maximize “value capture.” Four B2B approaches are explored here.
  • Four Steps Needed for New Product Differentiation While VOC is extremely important, the most overlooked practice in B2B product development today is competitive benchmarking. This should be done in the front-end of innovation using 4 steps: 1) Identify outcomes to benchmark, 2) Identify customers’ alternatives, 3) Identify test methods, and 4) Identify benchmark levels (how good is good enough?)
  • Is Your Innovation Supplier-Centric… or Customer-Centric? To move from supplier- to customer-centric innovation, B2B producers should shift their thinking in four areas: 1) new markets to new supplier, 2) validating hypotheses to uncovering outcomes, 3) competitive products to customer alternatives, and 4) competitive pricing to value creation.
  • Should you develop new products like Steve Jobs? People sometimes ask, “Can’t I develop breakthrough products without talking to customers… like Steve Jobs did?” But they are missing some key distinctions between themselves and Steve Jobs… especially if they are B2B producers.
  • The Best B2B Customer Interviews Use a Digital Projector AIM pioneered taking notes so B2B customers can see them. This helps in 5 ways: 1) real-time correction, 2) idea “spring-boarding,” 3) customer prioritization, 4) no transcribing later, and 5) customer engagement.
  • The Cost-Cutter’s Guide to Growth In a tough economy, B2B producers can follow these 4 tips: 1) Hear the voice of the customer inexpensively, 2) get everyone listening to the customer’s voice, 3) use other people’s knowledge, and 4) alter their training model.
  • The Missing Objective in B2B Voice of Customer Your “second objective” after customer insight should be customer engagement. These 9 approaches help: 1) Kill the questionnaire, 2) let customers lead, 3) discuss their “job-to-be-done,” 4) project your notes, 5) focus on customer outcomes, 6) probe… deeply, 7) don’t sell or solve, 8) get quantitative, and 9) use triggers.
  • The Science behind Great Value Propositions The strongest value propositions examine key customer outcomes at 9 levels (the essence of New Product Blueprinting): 1) Uncover outcomes, 2) understand importance, 3) define & set direction, 4) prioritize outcomes, 5) learn how to measure, 6) identify satisfaction levels, 7) measure next best alternatives, 8) quantify value created, and 9) quantify value captured.
  • The Significance of Market Concentration In a concentrated market—where there are relatively few customers—B2B innovators should pursue customer engagement as well as market insight. Practical ways to do this include keeping customer objectives in the center, ensuring the interview process is a professional experience, and continuing to engage the customer after the interview.
  • What Drives B2B Organic Growth? Now we know. Want to drive rapid, profitable, sustainable growth at your company… and focus on what matters most? This original research taps over 10,000 years of combined experience from 540 B2B professionals. You’ll see which of 24 growth drivers they deemed the most important, and which they were most eager to improve.
  • You’ve already answered 4 questions, but… correctly? Has your business correctly answered 4 questions? 1) Would better customer insight improve our innovation success? 2) Should we take a DIY approach to customer insight (vs. using “hired guns”)? 3) Should we learn improved customer insight from external trainers (vs. training ourselves)? 4) Should gaining this customer insight capability be a top priority (vs. other priorities)?

Customer Insights (VoC)

  • 3 Goals for Blueprinting Discovery Interviews Survey data shows three benefits of using The AIM Institute's Discovery interviews: 1) Gain insight into customer needs, 2) engage and impress customers, and 3) develop life-long skills.
  • Are You Squandering R&D Resources? Most B2B companies waste millions of dollars in failed product development. This often isn’t because their scientists can’t come up with good answers… but rather they’re working on the wrong questions. Good customer insight lets you move into the Non-Obvious zone, working on customer problems your competitors miss.
  • B2B Customer Interviews: Are They Different? If you are using older voice-of-customer methods (e.g. DFSS or QFD), you’re sub-optimizing. For B2B your methods must achieve 3 goals: 1) collaborate deeply, 2) pre-sell your innovation, and 3) maximize “value capture.” Four B2B approaches are explored here.
  • Bring Your Customers to Life with Personas A persona is a hypothetical archetype used to represent customers in a given market segment. Follow 4 practices for B2B growth: 1) Design for just one person, 2) be specific, 3) remember precision is more important than accuracy, and 4) separate user personas from buyer personas.
  • Customer Interviews — By the Numbers Qualitative interviews are important, but if you don’t continue with quantitative interviews you may still struggle with new product innovation. Many B2B producers use AIM’s preference interviews to generate Market Satisfaction Gaps for customer outcomes. A Gap over 30% indicates the market segment is eager to see improvement.
  • Do You Really Interview Customers? When it comes to B2B customer insight, a face-to-face customer interview offers significant advantages. Some think they’ll learn all they need to know from their sales force… but there’s a big difference between customer-reactive meetings and market-proactive interviews.
  • Don’t Rely on Your Sales Force for Voice-of-the-Customer Your sales force is a vital part of B2B voice-of-customer. But don't count on them doing this work by themselves or you’ll miss 4 objectives: 1) Concentration on a single market segment, 2) meeting with the right customer contacts, 3) using strong probing skills and tools, and 4) aggressive follow-through.
  • Four Discovery Interview Blunders that Frustrate Your Customers New Product Blueprinting's B2B-specific methods provide the inputs for organic growth. Avoid these blunders when executing Step 2, Discovery Interviews.
  • Getting Top Price for Your New Product Learn how to determine new product pricing for B2B markets. Plus… 4 added benefits of using a value calculator: 1) Increase customer awareness of value. 2) Build customer confidence. 3) Increase your understanding of customers’ world. 4) Boost customer “internal selling.”
  • Give your Hypothesis the “Silent Treatment” The “old way” of interviewing was to “validate” your idea with customers… but this leads to confirmation bias. With the “new way,” you focus on their needs and gain 5 benefits… 1) add new outcomes to your design, 2) eliminate costs for unimportant outcomes, 3) learn why they want outcomes (for better pricing), 4) engage them more, and 5) move faster.
  • How to model customer needs B2B companies can do 3 things with customer needs: guess, understand or model them. This article explores modeling and its 3 benefits: 1) It’s much cheaper and faster than starting with a prototype, 2) you’ll understand customers’ next-best alternatives better… so you can optimize product pricing, and 3) customers will be much more engaged.
  • Is Your Innovation Supplier-Centric… or Customer-Centric? To move from supplier- to customer-centric innovation, B2B producers should shift their thinking in four areas: 1) new markets to new supplier, 2) validating hypotheses to uncovering outcomes, 3) competitive products to customer alternatives, and 4) competitive pricing to value creation.
  • Lean Startup: A Great Approach Requiring “B2B Pre-Work” Lean Startup is a powerful methodology, but B2B suppliers need to make some adjustments to avoid serious pitfalls. Instead of using a Build-Measure-Learn cycle, B2B producers should use a Learn-Build-Measure-Learn cycle. In other words, they should begin with B2B-optimized customer interviews.
  • Should you develop new products like Steve Jobs? People sometimes ask, “Can’t I develop breakthrough products without talking to customers… like Steve Jobs did?” But they are missing some key distinctions between themselves and Steve Jobs… especially if they are B2B producers.
  • The Best B2B Customer Interviews Use a Digital Projector AIM pioneered taking notes so B2B customers can see them. This helps in 5 ways: 1) real-time correction, 2) idea “spring-boarding,” 3) customer prioritization, 4) no transcribing later, and 5) customer engagement.
  • The Harsh Realities of Organic Growth Most B2B companies struggle with organic growth because they don't rationally deal with these 5 harsh realities. This article compares the futility of “penny pinching” in the front end of innovation… to the way DuPont invested in New Product Blueprinting training.
  • The Missing Objective in B2B Voice of Customer Your “second objective” after customer insight should be customer engagement. These 9 approaches help: 1) Kill the questionnaire, 2) let customers lead, 3) discuss their “job-to-be-done,” 4) project your notes, 5) focus on customer outcomes, 6) probe… deeply, 7) don’t sell or solve, 8) get quantitative, and 9) use triggers.
  • The Science behind Great Value Propositions The strongest value propositions examine key customer outcomes at 9 levels (the essence of New Product Blueprinting): 1) Uncover outcomes, 2) understand importance, 3) define & set direction, 4) prioritize outcomes, 5) learn how to measure, 6) identify satisfaction levels, 7) measure next best alternatives, 8) quantify value created, and 9) quantify value captured.
  • The Significance of Market Concentration In a concentrated market—where there are relatively few customers—B2B innovators should pursue customer engagement as well as market insight. Practical ways to do this include keeping customer objectives in the center, ensuring the interview process is a professional experience, and continuing to engage the customer after the interview.
  • What’s Restraining Your Growth? Your Time Horizon. More than anything else, short time horizons restrain B2B organic growth. And this leads to “internal friction” in your growth machine, specifically in 4 areas: 1) available time, 2) required skills, 3) team motivation, and 4) organizational disruptions.
  • What’s Your Company’s Innovation Maturity Level? There are 4 Innovation Maturity Levels: 1) Solution push, 2) Solution validation, 3) Market insight, and 4) Market scouting. Learn how to dramatically boost your B2B innovation just by reaching Level 3.
  • Where new product ideas begin This AIM Institute article shows research by Dr. Robert Cooper explaining the power of voice-of-customer. Of 18 sources for new product idea, the 8 VOC methods studied took 8 out of the 9 spots in this survey of 150 firms.
  • Why Advanced Voice of Customer Matters Far too many B2B customers are still using “Voice of Ourselves” for product development. Diagnose your VOO vs. VOC behavior in 10 areas: 1) interview scope, 2) interview objective, 3) types of questions, 4) note-taking, 5) interview skills, 6) observation skills, 7) companies interviewed, 8) deliverables, 9) engagement timeframe, and 10) interviewing staff.
  • Your Best Path to Profitable, Sustainable Organic Growth Consider this logic chain for growth: A) Your only path to profitable, sustainable growth in in creating customer value. B) The only way to create customer value is by improving important, unmet customer outcomes. C) Most companies do a poor job today of identifying which customer outcomes to improve. D) Proven methods are now available to confidently target a market’s important, unmet outcomes.

Innovation

  • 3 Problems with Innovation Metrics Everyone wants to use metrics to monitor their innovation. That's fine… but unless you’re using “intermediate” metrics, you could be missing 3 qualities of a good metric: 1) predictive, 2) insightful, and 3) actionable. Consider these 12 intermediate metrics for your business.
  • Boosting Innovation… In One Easy Lesson You can triple profit growth by engaging customers in your innovation process. Do this by “moving up” in these 6 levels of customer engagement: 1) our conference rooms, 2) asking our experts, 3) customer survey, 4) qualitative VOC interviews, 5) quantitative VOC interviews, and 6) B2B-optimized VOC interviews.
  • Developing Great Products for Unfamiliar Markets Pursue unfamiliar B2B markets with confidence… by combining New Product Blueprinting and Discovery-Driven Planning. You can use the FAQS map to move from uncertainty to certainty: F for Facts, A for Assumptions, Q for Questions, and S for surprises.
  • Generate Powerful New Product Ideas Use these 5 tactics to improve your solution brainstorming: 1) Begin with a problem to be solved. 2) Embrace two distinct phases of divergence and convergence. 3) Schedule for adequate time. 4) Choose a diverse team. 5) Conduct pre-session training. Then move on to 5 “advanced” tactics.
  • Give your Hypothesis the “Silent Treatment” The “old way” of interviewing was to “validate” your idea with customers… but this leads to confirmation bias. With the “new way,” you focus on their needs and gain 5 benefits… 1) add new outcomes to your design, 2) eliminate costs for unimportant outcomes, 3) learn why they want outcomes (for better pricing), 4) engage them more, and 5) move faster.
  • How to Avoid New-Product Commercial Risk Can you eliminate most commercial risk when developing B2B new products? Yes… by building a Certainty Time Machine. Once you start the development stage, you should primarily be dealing with technical risk, not commercial risk.
  • Jobs to Be Done and New Product Blueprinting “Jobs-to-be-done” (JTBD) is a powerful way of thinking that 1) provides a longer time horizon than a product focus, 2) guides you when conducting pre-interview market research, 3) naturally integrates with New Product Blueprinting, and 4) helps you separate the core, focal job from consumption chain jobs.
  • Lean Startup: A Great Approach Requiring “B2B Pre-Work” Lean Startup is a powerful methodology, but B2B suppliers need to make some adjustments to avoid serious pitfalls. Instead of using a Build-Measure-Learn cycle, B2B producers should use a Learn-Build-Measure-Learn cycle. In other words, they should begin with B2B-optimized customer interviews.
  • What’s Your Company’s Innovation Maturity Level? There are 4 Innovation Maturity Levels: 1) Solution push, 2) Solution validation, 3) Market insight, and 4) Market scouting. Learn how to dramatically boost your B2B innovation just by reaching Level 3.
  • You’ve already answered 4 questions, but… correctly? Has your business correctly answered 4 questions? 1) Would better customer insight improve our innovation success? 2) Should we take a DIY approach to customer insight (vs. using “hired guns”)? 3) Should we learn improved customer insight from external trainers (vs. training ourselves)? 4) Should gaining this customer insight capability be a top priority (vs. other priorities)?

New Product Blueprinting Process

  • 10 Advantages of Blueprinter 5.0 This cloud-based software provides 10 advantages: 1) enhanced data security, 2) better determination of who to interview, 3) better interview preparation, 4) reduced stress recruiting interviewees, 5) improved customer process map-building capability, 6) stronger interview beginning, 7) better outcome capture, 8) on-screen viewing of trigger map, 9) easier selection of Top Picks, and 10 anywhere-anytime access of project data.
  • 3 Goals for Blueprinting Discovery Interviews Survey data shows three benefits of using The AIM Institute's Discovery interviews: 1) Gain insight into customer needs, 2) engage and impress customers, and 3) develop life-long skills.
  • 5 Overlooked Benefits of Blueprinting New Product Blueprinting provides these typically overlooked benefits: 1) Learn the unknown unknowns. 2) Unlearn the things we do know… that aren’t true. 3) Align the development team for action. 4) Make better decisions through market intuition. 5) Build sales relationships.
  • 9 Best Practices for Recruiting Customers Consider these best practices for recruiting customers for interviews: 1) Value representativeness over sample size. 2) Include respondents along the value chain. 3) Recruit some respondents with internal resources. 4) Use outside recruiting if you get stuck. 5) Get the sales team on board. 6) Use a script for recruiting calls. 7) Email an agenda. 8) Send respondent to www.haveyoubeendiscovered.com. 9) Start with a big list.
  • Design Thinking and New Product Blueprinting Design Thinking vs. New Product Blueprinting? They are highly complementary, with design thinking going further in some areas… and Blueprinting going further in other areas. Bottom line: Think of Blueprinting as a type of design thinking… essentially a roadmap for front-end of B2B Design Thinking.
  • Elevate Blueprinting Success in Step 1 These 5 practices help you succeed in the first step of Blueprinting… selecting a target market and project scope: 1) Define the boundaries. 2) Seek diversity. 3) Schedule enough time. 4) Sync with your strategic plan. 5) Get key stakeholders on board.
  • Four Discovery Interview Blunders that Frustrate Your Customers New Product Blueprinting's B2B-specific methods provide the inputs for organic growth. Avoid these blunders when executing Step 2, Discovery Interviews.
  • Jobs to Be Done and New Product Blueprinting “Jobs-to-be-done” (JTBD) is a powerful way of thinking that 1) provides a longer time horizon than a product focus, 2) guides you when conducting pre-interview market research, 3) naturally integrates with New Product Blueprinting, and 4) helps you separate the core, focal job from consumption chain jobs.
  • The TAO of Discovery Interviews Tao is the Chinese word that means “path” or “the way.” Here the letters T-A-O reveal the essence of Blueprinting Discovery interviews and the fundamentals of B2B innovation: “T” for techniques, “A” for attitude, and “O” for order.
  • What is New Product Blueprinting? With New Product Blueprinting, you use creative foresight and a detailed plan for new product development… similar to an architect’s planning before breaking ground. The process includes 7 steps: 1) market research, 2) Discovery interviews, 3) Preference interviews, 4) side-by-side testing, 5) product objectives, 6) technical brainstorming, and 7) business case.

New Product Value/Pricing

  • Customer Interviews — By the Numbers Qualitative interviews are important, but if you don’t continue with quantitative interviews you may still struggle with new product innovation. Many B2B producers use AIM’s preference interviews to generate Market Satisfaction Gaps for customer outcomes. A Gap over 30% indicates the market segment is eager to see improvement.
  • Getting Top Price for Your New Product Learn how to determine new product pricing for B2B markets. Plus… 4 added benefits of using a value calculator: 1) Increase customer awareness of value. 2) Build customer confidence. 3) Increase your understanding of customers’ world. 4) Boost customer “internal selling.”
  • Pricing New vs. Existing Products It's much easier to gather the data you need for pricing a new product, because customers want you to understand enough to deliver value to them. Unlike B2C, B2B providers should try to understand customers’ pricing decision-making instead of asking for pricing decisions (via surveys).
  • The Commodity Death Spiral Learn these six ways to avoid the Commodity Death Spiral that short-term-thinking business leaders fall into: 1) Take ownership of your future. 2) Measure your progress. 3) Change your time horizon. 4) Work on high-impact products. 5) Get out more. 6) Directly engage your customers.
  • The Science behind Great Value Propositions The strongest value propositions examine key customer outcomes at 9 levels (the essence of New Product Blueprinting): 1) Uncover outcomes, 2) understand importance, 3) define & set direction, 4) prioritize outcomes, 5) learn how to measure, 6) identify satisfaction levels, 7) measure next best alternatives, 8) quantify value created, and 9) quantify value captured.
  • Three Steps to Unbeatable Value Propositions If you want to create an unbeatable value proposition with your B2B product, understand customer value by moving to the highest of 6 levels for customer insight. Then quantify value by building a value calculator, and communicate value with a B2B-optimized product launch.

Organic Growth

  • Are You A Builder or a Decorator? Are you a business Builder… passionate about organic growth? Or just an Interior Decorator... Realtor… or Landlord? When you work on your “growth machine,” are you concerned with what is going into the feed hopper… or are you just paying attention to what’s coming out the extruder die (financial results)?
  • Better get used to mediocre growth Unless you deal with two growth problems, you'd better get used to mediocre organic growth: 1) You only “earned” a small part of your growth today; the rest is “inherited” and “market” growth. 2) If you and your competitors are all planning to growth faster than the market you serve, someone will be disappointed.
  • Build Growth Muscles at Your Company If you want profitable, sustainable B2B growth, you must develop "growth muscles." You wouldn’t try to climb El Capitan without climbing skills. Yet many business leaders proclaim double-digit growth plans year after year, but do nothing to build the capabilities needed to succeed.
  • How to become a great business leader Read how great business leaders drive organic growth by shifting their balance in four areas: 1) Your job: from interior decorator to builder. 2) Your goal: from shareholder wealth to organic growth. 3) Your time horizon: from current year to the future. 4) Your focus: from results to capabilities.
  • How’s Your Market Segmentation? A market segment is a “cluster of customers with similar needs.” You should focus your innovation on individual market segments for optimal effectiveness and efficiency. Follow these four market segmentation “rules” for success.
  • Plan your B2B organic growth with this new diagnostic For rapid, profitable, sustainable growth, your goal should be, “Understand and meet customer needs better than anyone else.” These 7 other common paths simply won’t work. Use AIM’s B2B Growth Diagnostic to benchmark your business against average, top quartile, and top decile companies on 25 growth drivers.
  • Seven Mistakes that Stunt Organic Growth Avoid these 7 mistakes in developing new products: 1) Imagining customer needs. 2) Relying on sales reps to capture customer needs. 3) Counting on just a few VOC experts. 4) Using hand-me-down consumer-goods methods. 5) Gathering only qualitative customer feedback. 6) Listening only to immediate customers. 7) Ignoring competitors when you design your product.
  • The Commodity Death Spiral Learn these six ways to avoid the Commodity Death Spiral that short-term-thinking business leaders fall into: 1) Take ownership of your future. 2) Measure your progress. 3) Change your time horizon. 4) Work on high-impact products. 5) Get out more. 6) Directly engage your customers.
  • The Harsh Realities of Organic Growth Most B2B companies struggle with organic growth because they don't rationally deal with these 5 harsh realities. This article compares the futility of “penny pinching” in the front end of innovation… to the way DuPont invested in New Product Blueprinting training.
  • What Drives B2B Organic Growth? Now we know. Want to drive rapid, profitable, sustainable growth at your company… and focus on what matters most? This original research taps over 10,000 years of combined experience from 540 B2B professionals. You’ll see which of 24 growth drivers they deemed the most important, and which they were most eager to improve.
  • What’s Restraining Your Growth? Your Time Horizon. More than anything else, short time horizons restrain B2B organic growth. And this leads to “internal friction” in your growth machine, specifically in 4 areas: 1) available time, 2) required skills, 3) team motivation, and 4) organizational disruptions.
  • Why Maximizing Shareholder Value Is a Flawed Goal These 5 points will convince you that "maximizing shareholder value" is the wrong goal for your company: 1) The underlying logic is failed. 2) Results don’t support this approach. 3) A good result can be a bad goal. 4) Employees need a higher calling. 5) A better goal is “understand and meet customer needs.”
  • Why will future companies laugh at us? Today's innovation methods will look outdated in the future, with these 6 “awkward realities”: 1) We test market needs by launching products at customers. 2) We don’t understand what organic growth requires of us. 3) We misunderstand the proper role of stage-and-gate processes. 4) We interview customers to “validate” our hypothesis. 5) We fail to fully engage customers in our innovation. 6) We are easily distracted from customer-facing innovation.
  • Your Best Path to Profitable, Sustainable Organic Growth Consider this logic chain for growth: A) Your only path to profitable, sustainable growth in in creating customer value. B) The only way to create customer value is by improving important, unmet customer outcomes. C) Most companies do a poor job today of identifying which customer outcomes to improve. D) Proven methods are now available to confidently target a market’s important, unmet outcomes.

Product Development

  • Are You Maximizing Your Profits? If you want a blockbuster new product, you need to meet all 6—not just 4 or 5—of these conditions: 1) A need exists. 2) The need is uncovered. 3) A solution is developed. 4) The solution is delivered. 5) Value is captured (via pricing). 6) Value is protected (via patents or trade secret).
  • Are You Squandering R&D Resources? Most B2B companies waste millions of dollars in failed product development. This often isn’t because their scientists can’t come up with good answers… but rather they’re working on the wrong questions. Good customer insight lets you move into the Non-Obvious zone, working on customer problems your competitors miss.
  • Bring Your Customers to Life with Personas A persona is a hypothetical archetype used to represent customers in a given market segment. Follow 4 practices for B2B growth: 1) Design for just one person, 2) be specific, 3) remember precision is more important than accuracy, and 4) separate user personas from buyer personas.
  • Design Thinking and New Product Blueprinting Design Thinking vs. New Product Blueprinting? They are highly complementary, with design thinking going further in some areas… and Blueprinting going further in other areas. Bottom line: Think of Blueprinting as a type of design thinking… essentially a roadmap for front-end of B2B Design Thinking.
  • Develop New Products Faster! Leaders can speed up product development by putting their foot on three “pedals”… resources, communication and accountability. And teams also have three pedals to push: market knowledge for NPD accuracy, risk management, and communication.
  • Developing Great Products for Unfamiliar Markets Pursue unfamiliar B2B markets with confidence… by combining New Product Blueprinting and Discovery-Driven Planning. You can use the FAQS map to move from uncertainty to certainty: F for Facts, A for Assumptions, Q for Questions, and S for surprises.
  • Four Steps Needed for New Product Differentiation While VOC is extremely important, the most overlooked practice in B2B product development today is competitive benchmarking. This should be done in the front-end of innovation using 4 steps: 1) Identify outcomes to benchmark, 2) Identify customers’ alternatives, 3) Identify test methods, and 4) Identify benchmark levels (how good is good enough?)
  • Give your Hypothesis the “Silent Treatment” The “old way” of interviewing was to “validate” your idea with customers… but this leads to confirmation bias. With the “new way,” you focus on their needs and gain 5 benefits… 1) add new outcomes to your design, 2) eliminate costs for unimportant outcomes, 3) learn why they want outcomes (for better pricing), 4) engage them more, and 5) move faster.
  • How to Avoid New-Product Commercial Risk Can you eliminate most commercial risk when developing B2B new products? Yes… by building a Certainty Time Machine. Once you start the development stage, you should primarily be dealing with technical risk, not commercial risk.
  • Systems vs Goals Donald Rumsfeld described “unknown unknowns,” but B2B innovators, marketers and new product developers should also consider the dangers of untrue beliefs. It’s quite destructive when we build business cases, draft risk assessments, and plan projects on the basis of something that simply isn’t true.
  • Why will future companies laugh at us? Today's innovation methods will look outdated in the future, with these 6 “awkward realities”: 1) We test market needs by launching products at customers. 2) We don’t understand what organic growth requires of us. 3) We misunderstand the proper role of stage-and-gate processes. 4) We interview customers to “validate” our hypothesis. 5) We fail to fully engage customers in our innovation. 6) We are easily distracted from customer-facing innovation.

Product Launch

  • 12 Tips for Your Best-Ever Product Launch Enjoy your best-ever B2B product launch using 12 tips from the AIM Institute's e-book. Features LaunchStar software which delivers a comprehensive 2-page launch plan executive summary.
  • How to Plan an Amazing B2B Product Launch How can you know with absolute confidence that you’ve put together all the key elements of a winning product launch plan? Prepare these 5 product launch plan documents: 1) Launch Plan Executive Summary, 2) Prospect Profile, 3) Message Brief, 4) Media Guide, and 5) Launch Results.
  • Stop Squandering Your Product Launch Budget Your product launch budget will stretch much further when you understand your industry position on this matrix… based on the number of customers in your target market and your current supplier position. And AIM’s 2-Question Launch Survey will focus your spending for optimal efficiency.
  • Three Steps to Unbeatable Value Propositions If you want to create an unbeatable value proposition with your B2B product, understand customer value by moving to the highest of 6 levels for customer insight. Then quantify value by building a value calculator, and communicate value with a B2B-optimized product launch.

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