Moore’s Crossing the Chasm Ch 05: “Assemble the Invasion Force”

[Read the entire chapter by chapter review of Crossing the Chasm.]

Pages 129 – 162; Screens 1728 – 2082

whole-product-model.jpgThe Whole Product Concept was introduced earlier in the book – but in Chapter 5 it gets the attention that its due.  Moore’s book is about introducing the Technology Life Cycle Adoption model and combining it with the Whole Product Concept – which when used over time shows what is needed to win when introducing new products.  He adds to these two concepts some missing definitions and clarity – but it is this combination shown over the maturation of a product that make his contribution to marketing so important.

Best Quote(s)

“The concept is very straightforward: There is a gap between the marketing promise made to the customer—the compelling value proposition—and the ability of the shipped product to fulfill that promise. For that gap to be overcome, the product must be augmented by a variety of services and ancillary products to become the whole product.”  Chapter 5, Location 1749

For a customer to buy – and as Moore calls out clearly – we are focused on the customer BUYING, not on the vendor SELLING – a certain set of things must be present.  To buy a car, I’ve got to test drive.  To test drive, I need wheels on the car.  The list goes on – and finds similar constraints in the world of industrial B2B sales.

“In the simplified model there are only two categories: (1) what we ship and (2) whatever else the customers need in order to achieve their compelling reason to buy.” Chapter 5, Location 1813

Everything that is missing between the seller’s ‘Generic’ product – as it stands offered to the market – and what a customer needs to buy, is a constraint.  We know from The Goal how to treat constraints.

“If you leave your customer’s success to chance, you are giving up control over your own success.” Chapter 5, Location 1860

Maybe the customer will buy without you doing that extra bit of work – but why leave it to chance?  Maybe what they are telling you is what all of the other buyers – from the pragmatists to the laggards – need in order to purchase.  Resolve the Whole Product needs and you can cross the chasm.  Fail to resolve those needs and your effort will fail.

“They don’t say no, in other words; they just don’t say yes. Talk about extended sales cycles!” Chapter 5, Location 1934

This is the death of most start-ups.  The VP of sales has a long list of “not-a-NO”, but the list of paying accounts isn’t sufficiently long.  Those that are buying require too much specialization such that there are never efficiencies of scale.  Don’t leave your fate to chance.  Cross the chams with intent – and do it by building out the Whole Product model for your beachhead customers.

Page by Page, Screen by Screen

1728

“I have always found you get a lot more in this world with a kind word and a gun than you do with just a kind word.”—Willie Sutton

“If you are committing an act of aggression, you’d better have the force to back it up. Or, to put this in terms closer to our immediate topic, marketing is warfare—not wordfare.”

1734

“There is a widespread perception among high-tech executives that marketing consists primarily of some long-range strategic thinking (when you can afford to take the time for it) and then a lot of tactical sales support—with nothing in between. In fact, marketing’s most powerful contribution happens right in between.”

1744

“For a given target customer and a given application, create a marketplace in which your product is the only reasonable buying proposition.”

“To secure that monopoly, you need to understand (1) what a whole product consists of and (2) how to organize a marketplace to provide a whole product incorporating your company’s offering.”

The Whole Product Concept

1749

Source of Whole Product concept, “Theodore Levitt’s The Marketing Imagination, and one that plays a significant role in Bill Davidow’s Marketing High Technology.”

Definition:

“The concept is very straightforward: There is a gap between the marketing promise made to the customer—the compelling value proposition—and the ability of the shipped product to fulfill that promise. For that gap to be overcome, the product must be augmented by a variety of services and ancillary products to become the whole product.”

1754

Rings of the whole product:

  • Generic
  • Expected
  • Augmented
  • Potential

1772

Whole Product and Tech Adoption Life Cycle

1777

“Their motto is: Real techies don’t need whole products.”

1782

“To get to the right of the chasm—to cross into the mainstream market—you have to first meet the demands of the pragmatist customers.”

1793

“To net this out: Pragmatists evaluate and buy whole products.”

1798

Whole Product Planning

1803

“Pragmatists will hold off committing their support until they see a strong candidate for leadership emerge.”

“A good generic product is a great asset in this battle, but it is neither a necessary nor a sufficient cause of victory.”

1808

“In short, winning the whole product battle means winning the war. And, because perception contributes to that reality, looking like you are winning the whole product battle is a key weapon to winning the war. On the other hand, pretending you are winning the whole product battle is a losing tactic—people check up on each other too much in the high-tech marketplace.”

1813

“In the simplified model there are only two categories: (1) what we ship and (2) whatever else the customers need in order to achieve their compelling reason to buy.”

1822

“Significantly less than 100 percent means that the target market simply does not develop as forecast—even if the generic product, the product in the box being shipped, is superior to anything else in its class.”

“By solving the whole product equation for any given set of target customers, high tech has overcome its single greatest obstacle to market development.”

Carnegie style persuasion.

1827

Ebook, Revisited

737 – point by point

1847

“The point is, even a single target-customer profile starts off a chain of issues that any product manager serious about developing a particular market opportunity must pursue to a satisfactory conclusion.”

More examples of ebook uses – lawyers, doctors, etc

1856

“As even this cursory listing indicates, every additional new target customer will put additional new demands on the whole product.”

1860

“The answer is, it has nothing to do with responsibility, it has to do with marketing success. If you leave your customer’s success to chance, you are giving up control over your own success.”

1866

“But while you are crossing the chasm, there is no hope of any external support that is not specifically recruited by you for this purpose.”

1871

Some Real World Examples

“Basically, there are two types of scenarios we want to work through-one where there is installed competition, and the other where there is not.”

“Neither is for the faint of heart.”

• Lawson software vs Oracle, SAP, PeopleSoft

• Savi – inventory tracker – no benchmark

1881

“Oddly enough, Lawson decided that it had the advantage (this is a form of optimism that can only be built in the Midwest—it has something to do with the winters).”

1886

“Lawson was pretty sure that it could get a multi-year head start in a niche market by focusing right at the start, and that’s precisely what it did.”

1891

“When segments are too large or diffuse, early leaders can be displaced by fast-following competitors who have greater resources to apply to the opportunity.”

1896

“Now the definition of the whole product is the minimum set of products and services needed to fulfill the compelling reason to buy for the target customer.”

1919

“What was the result of all this focus on a single niche? Early on, the results were underwhelming.”

1934

“They don’t say no, in other words; they just don’t say yes. Talk about extended sales cycles!”

1944

“To cross the chasm based on a military product commits one to a procurement system that does not lend itself to superior financial returns, to a marketing system that is completely divorced from commercial markets, and to a whole lot of very long, not very stimulating meetings.”

1978

“But the offer itself has been taken up by enough additional customers to ensure the company’s ongoing place in the market—and that is the primary goal for crossing the chasm.”

1982

Partners and Allies

1988

“As a rule, however, these types of alliances do better in the boardroom than on the street.”

“To make matters worse, each side has probably misrepresented itself one way or another during negotiations, such that there is plenty of ammunition for each group to fire at the other once tempers get hot.”

1998

“Tactical alliances have one and only one purpose: to accelerate the formation of whole product infrastructure within a specific target market segment.”

2013

“The main point, again, is that these are tactical alliances growing out of whole product needs, not strategic alliances growing out of… well, whatever strategic alliances grow out of (my personal feeling is that the number-one cause of strategic alliances is too many staff people with not enough to do).”

2054

“Which of these partnership are most likely to succeed?”

Farsight- pharma modeling software

2059

“For markets represent more than just a buyer and a seller. They are an ecology of interrelated interests interoperating to create what business schools call value chains.”

“The force itself is a function of actually delivering on the customer’s compelling reason to buy in its entirety.”

2064

Recap: Tips on Whole Product

  1. Use circle diagram
  2. Review whole Product – KISS
  3. Review from the participants perspectives
  4. Develop relationships slowly
  5. With big partners – work bottoms up
  6. Partnerships are for communication
  7. If large, focus on tactical support
  8. Your own company can be the hardest to manage

2082

End of chapter.

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