Archive for October, 2013

what customers want. Using outcome-driven innovation to create breakthrough products & services. Anthony W. Ulwick

English: A business ideally is continually see...

what customers want. Using outcome-driven innovation to create breakthrough products & services. Anthony W. Ulwick. 2005. ISBN 9780071408677. Don Adams in his excellent book, New Product Blueprinting,  referenced Ulwick’s ground breaking work on Jobs That Need Doing and this book. It is everything Adams said it was. I read and reread several sections as this disciple of Christensen (The Innovators Dilemma)  does a terrific job of  highlighting the  flaws in Voice of the Customer product research and replacing it with something much better.

  1. Buyers have a job that needs doing .
  2. They have multiple metrics they use to see if the job is done to their satisfaction.

Ulwick maintains,  and I agree , that the bulk of the innovation failures and monstrous dissipation of capital in the pursuit of it , is due to not really knowing what job the customer needs to do and how they will measure success. (And then not delivering a compelling solution) . Through the many examples given, Ulwick lays out how the market research and strategy work should  done, how to choose between alternatives and the degree this will impact different industries. His clear  examples run from very mature industries through to the most cutting edge ones.  I agree with his supposition as in our practice we all to often are called into clients to help ,  and find that the troubles come from them just do not knowing enough about their customers. Too often both sales and marketing are looking at the wrong things to help the company.  He emphasizes the key role that ongoing market research needs to play.

The Ultimate Guide to Strategic Marketing. Robert J.Hamper

The July 24, 2006 issue of Fortune, featuring ...

The Ultimate Guide to Strategic Marketing. Robert J.Hamper. 2014. ISBN 9780071809092. The author really knows this stuff.  It is truly “real world methods for developing successful long-term marketing plans”. This type of analysis is rarely found among the fast growth companies that we work with. Part of our efforts is to introduce the  type of thinking found in this book.  So although the focus of the book is to Fortune 500, make no mistake that any product company wishing to succeed needs to learn how to do this type of strategic market planning.   The  case study at the end of each chapter is very valuable.  The thorough treatment right up to implementation strategies speaks to the completeness of this work.  Yet the book remains quite readable. Too bad RIM never looked at the world this way.

 

Dealing With People You Can’t Stand. 3rd Ed. How to bring out the best in people at their worst. Dr. RIck Brinkman & Dr. Rick Kirschner.

Texas Governor Rick Perry speaking at the Hous...

Dealing With People You Can’t  Stand.  3rd Ed. How to bring out the best in people at  their worst. Dr. Rick Brinkman & Dr. Rick Kirschner.2012. ISBN 9780071785723. The title called out to me to read it. We have all been in “those” situations.  With a breezy style, light touch and excellent examples the authors do a very good job on the subject. I appreciated that they identify the “types’, give good examples of the type in action  and how to recognize, react and get the best out of them. I was at a public meeting recently and when faced with one  “type”, I employed a tactic from the book. Imagine my surprise at how well it worked.  If you manage or work with  others I am certain you will find this a good resource.

Smart Selling on the Phone and Online. Inside sales that gets results. Josiane Chriqui Feigon.

A picture of my own Smart car.

Smart Selling on the Phone and Online. Inside sales that gets results. Josiane Chriqui Feigon. 2010 . ISBN 9780814414651.  I first read the author’s recent book Smart Sales Manager.  I liked it so much that I bought this book to see how she talked to sales people. Another valuable addition to the high performers sales tool kit. If you were limited to just one sales book to read – I would suggest this one.  Clear, easy to follow and descriptive enough so that the lessons stick.  But you will want to keep this on your sales desk to review over and over

Iqaluit in September- Just being socialable

Baffin Island Stones

Baffin Island Stones (Photo credit: 9brandon)

Iqaluit

Iqaluit (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Iqaluit, anglican church St. Jude

Iqaluit, anglican church St. Jude (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I had the pleasure to return to Iqaluit at the end of September to make a presentation on social selling at the Annual Nunavut Trade Show. I was a guest of the Baffin Island Chamber of Commerce and once again they really looked after me.   (They haves a joke that God made the world in six days and on the seventh he was bored so he threw stones at Baffin Island. – It is pretty rocky – great if you are a geologist).  I recommend that if you have the chance to visit Nunavut- do so. It is unlike any place you would go “down South”.

I sat with some local artists and had a great talk about how they preserve their culture in their family. Lovely people and so  in tune with today. The trade show is quite the thing.  I  can saw some incredible clothing (art really ) from local furs.

It is still a tougher place to live – it seems that Maritimers last longer there than Pacific Coasters.  I agree.

Mural in Iqaluit

Mural in Iqaluit (Photo credit: AScappatura)

If I did not come from Swedish stock – the openess (some could say bleakness) and the feeling that winter is never that far away might get to some of you . But the country is pretty awesome and the people more so.

Green house on stilts in Iqaluit

Green house on stilts in Iqaluit (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

People there are building  a new country and it behooves us to help them in whatever way we can.   I talked about how the addition of social selling is helping to move us closer to communities of buyers.  This allows us to present more of the context of our work – allowing buyers to become more aware of the us and what we are trying to achieve,

Legislative Building in Nunavut

Legislative Building in Nunavut (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Holy Smoke. A Jerusalem Mystery. Frederick Ramsey.

English: The Holy of Holies; illustration from...

Holy Smoke. A Jerusalem Mystery. Frederick Ramsey. 2013. ISBN 9781615954285.   A body has been found in the Holy of Holies in the tabernacle in Jerusalem at the time that Jesus was preaching nearby. The murder is finally solved by Jewish Rabbi and  a  Greek doctor. Call this an early Sherlock and Dr Watson. The book is a delightful insight into daily life in Jerusalem at the time. The interplay of nationalities, doctrines and the ruling elite is fascinating. A concise and quick read, the author does a good job of holding your interest.

Revenue and the CMO. How marketing will impact revenue through big data & social selling. Glenn Gow.

market 1

Revenue and the CMO. How marketing will impact revenue through big data & social selling. Glenn Gow. 2013. ISBN 9780989721516.  This is a very helpful little book. In less the 83 pp the author really cuts to the chase on how marketing and sales are missing the boat in many companies and then lays out exactly what you have to do. In our practice I intend to recommend this book to all our clients.   If you have wondered what all this content marketing and social media is really about and that it seems to have some staying power, read this book and you will understand and get going.

People Love You. The real secret to delivering legendary customer service. Jeb Blount.

Image representing SalesGravy.com as depicted ...

People Love You. The real secret to delivering legendary customer service. Jeb Blount.2013. ISBN 9781118433249. Jeb is the principal of SalesGravy.com a massive sales resource place that I strongly urge you to frequent. His books are always a delight to read, clear, concise, practical and really written from the heart.  Yet they are extremely valuable sales books for all types of sales people including customer service reps.  While I was reading this book , the humanity in sales comes through so much that it makes me fall in love with this profession all over again.  Customers are people, who choose emotionally and then back-fill with logic. You just gotta love this job!  A great 4 hour cross country read- giving you time to digest what is really being said.

Confessions of an Igloo Dweller. The story of the man who brought Inuit art to the outside world. James Houston.

Map locating Baffin Island, Canada

Confessions of an Igloo Dweller. The story of the man who brought Inuit art to the outside world. James Houston.1995. ISBN 0771042728. I discovered this treasure in my local library.  Houston first went up to what is now Nunavuit  in 1948 and lived there until 1962. There are 100 tightly written chapters abounding with stories of his experiences all through the area , with much of his living on Baffin Island.  This is a history of emerging Inuit artists beginning to be  found by the world, one mans love affair with the North and others like it , and insights into the life that the “real people” of the North had.  A great book for all Canadians to read and think about.