B2B growth leaders such as Avery Dennison, GE Healthcare and Pentair share a few common essentials that are the key to their success. They prioritize meaningful innovation. They target customers who appreciate value and are willing to pay more for it. They create and deliver solutions that are hard to duplicate.
Accomplishing this takes hard work, a belief in profitable growth and an unrelenting focus on the underlying needs of customers. Put simply, these companies think through where to play and how to win one application, one industry segment at a time.
We’ve worked with B2B companies with a strong track record of sustained, profitable revenue building and have since identified five growth essentials for success:
Focus On Your Customers
You have to focus on the customers who are the key decision makers in the value chain. A manufacturer of labels has to think about the CPG company that determines how packages are labeled, not just the distributor. Commercial insurers need to add value to the companies seeking risk management who ultimately buy their products, as well as the brokers who sell them. Finding the right decision makers and building relationships within end customers is crucial. Their insights will ultimately drive new product and service innovation at your company.
Avery Dennison put its core label business back on a sustainable growth trajectory by supplementing its distributor-focused sales effort through identifying, understanding and addressing the needs of the end customer – packaging engineers who were the drivers of packaging decorating innovation. Segment teams learned where packaging engineers played and who advised them in different industries. The Avery Dennison segment teams determined how to tailor innovation and product information to meet their requirements. By making innovation and marketing more relevant, they boosted sales.
When we began working with GE Healthcare, scores of different P&L centers proliferated in a siloed pursuit of revenue growth. It was common for five or more different GE Healthcare sales teams to call on the same customers, each selling a different product or service. GE Healthcare leadership recognized the need to drive a more comprehensive value proposition to spark hospital engagement, loyalty and growth. Through careful research, the company identified the three top opportunity segments to receive unified messaging, targeted innovation and a cross business sales support model.
The sales organization could now work as a single team to deliver an expanded, relevant value proposition that stretched across all healthcare units. The result: Exposure to higher-level decision makers and communicating an integrated view of how GE Healthcare’s entire spectrum of products and services could work together on their behalf.