Lemon #110. Focal areas

Lemon #110. Focal

While reading “Costovation” from Stephen Wunker & Jennifer Luo Law, we learned about relentless focus and choosing a focal area to make your vision a reality.

Over time, businesses tend to add things, not subtract them. This strategy of continually one-upping your competitors may have payoffs in the short term, but over time has the tendency to create a competitive field where each player looks strikingly like the last.

You can resist the natural gravitational pull of premiumization by articulating a clear focal point for your innovation project and rallying around it hard. 

4 Focal Areas to focus on:

  • Customer Segment: This means championing a customer type and then designing an offering that satisfies its needs precisely- no more no less.
    Example: Budget-minded leisure travelers. Omenahotelli, a Scandinavian chain of hotels guarantees just two things: cheap rate and proximity to tourist spots. No lobby, receptionist, or housekeeping services.
  • Job to be done: There are two types of jobs functional (bank stores money) or emotional (feel good). Tends to intersect with customer segments. 
    How dissatisfied are people with their current ability to get these jobs done?
  • Area of the Business: Focus on innovating on a specific area of the business such as fulfillment, post-sales support, operations. 
    Which area of the business is traditionally the most expensive or cumbersome in your industry?
  • Attribute: Outcomes and goals that customers are seeking to meet: convenience, price, speed. 
    Pay attention to attributes that are considered secondary or tertiary in your business. While competitors focus on improving the first, you can differentiate by excelling on secondary (but valuable) attributes.

Use your strategic objectives to help you select a focal area and make it your North Star when you are forced to make trade-offs and difficult decisions about the direction of your Costovation initiative.

Stephen Wunker & Jennifer Luo Law @ Costovation

Josep Guitart

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