Visionaries are from Mars, Pragmatists are from Venus

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One story of visionary buying behavior that I think still sums up the difference between how visionaries behave when responding to disruptive innovations is the tale of how Dell Computer changed the competitive dynamics in the ultra-competitive PC market in the mid-90s (*), and more specifically how Dell’s competitors failed to adapt or emulate their move despite all rational evidence that it was the only way to stay competitive.

Nobody Cares About Your “Platform” Till They Know What Real Problems It Solves

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Altogether now: Applications come first, platform comes second. Not the other way around!

In your marketing, on your website, or in front of customers, “platform” is practically a suicidal term until customers have shown that they care about what your product or service and the architecture behind it can do to help them solve at least one important, preferably urgent, business problem.

Bad News! The VC2C Business Model is at Breaking Point

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Ever since the advent of cheap and plentiful capital following the global financial crisis, a new business model has gradually muscled its way to the forefront, in many cases supplanting the conventional B2C — business to consumer — model and co-existing alongside the B2B — business to business — business model.

This is venture capital to consumer model which has become commonplace, particularly in consumer markets. Virtually every venture firm has one or more intentional or unintentionalVC2C’s in its portfolio.

Why Enterprise SaaS Deals Don’t Close

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At this point early in the new year, chances are that you’re either (still) celebrating after closing some of the large enterprise sales deals that you had in your Q4 pipeline, or lamenting one or more deals that slipped into the new fiscal year or – perish the thought – just fell out of your funnel.

Tesla: Lessons in Strategy and Governance

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An awful lot has been written about Elon Musk and Tesla in recent months from the now-notorious Q2 earnings call to the just-ended “going private” fiasco. Even more remains to be written about the daunting production and business challenges confronting Tesla and its mercurial CEO, Elon Musk, as the company seeks a way of rebuilding trust with investors.

How Much is Too Much?

How much is too much

By Paul Wiefels, Managing Director, Chasm Group LLC

During the past 10 years, Marketing technology (“Martech”) applications have become numerous; so numerous that the “Martech 5000” now comprises 7000+ entrants. Dr. Philip Kotler of Northwestern University defines marketing as “the science and art of exploring, creating, and delivering value to satisfy the needs of a target market at profit.” Are marketers at risk of focusing so much on the mechanization of the process such that the actual art of the discipline – the craft – is lost along the way?


Land & Expand Meets Customer Success – Three Key Gaps to Fill

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Despite considerable fanfare around the concept of customer success, in most tech companies CS is still in its infancy as a strategy and an organizing principle. During five years or so of field research and experience with Saas companies, I’ve identified at least three critical gaps which today inhibit the effectiveness of most companies to align with their customers’ target outcomes and thus maximize their growth.


The Seven Habits of Highly Successful Enterprise SaaS Companies

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Yes, another of those “keys to success” articles. I’m even using the magic number 7, as so many how-to books and articles have done in the past in emulation of Stephen Covey, whose wildly successful Seven Habits books have influenced millions of readers including myself. I hope Covey wouldn’t have minded the implied tribute here, along with so many others over the years.


Superbowl 2018 Advertisements: “What Was That About?”

What was that about

By Paul Wiefels

Decades ago, FCC chairman Newton Minow described American commercial television as “…a vast wasteland.” He could have been talking about yesterday’s Superbowl. Not the game, mind you. It was superb from kickoff to the final second. No, this year it was the advertising, much of it an exercise in mendacity, mediocrity, and banality. Then there was Justin Timberlake, who the LA Times described as having nothing to say which he said over and over. It’s also an apt description for this year’s commercial efforts.

Can Japan Capture the Next Technology Wave?

   Michael Eckhardt — Managing Director, Chasm Institute


Japan has historically excelled at world class manufacturing.  It’s a hardly disputed fact that no other country matches this amazing capability.  Manufacturing lends itself to incremental improvement through quality principles like kaizen, decentralized shop floor decision-making, and keiretsu-based value chains … manufacturing traits embraced and optimized by Japan’s large companies. However, what worked exceptionally well from 1970-1989 in driving Japan’s economic miracle and prosperity faltered with the bursting of the “Nikkei Bubble” in 1990.  What happened?