September CEO Update
September CEO Update
September 30, 2018
As September comes to an end, our entire team is busy absorbing all of the feedback that we are receiving through customer acceptance testing with key partners. The feedback affects almost everyone in the company as it ranges from feature requests to process changes and to technical issues we need to optimize. This feedback is incredibly valuable as we wrap-up the first version of our product and prepare to make a splash in the marketplace during our go-to-market process. As I outlined in last month’s blog post, in September through November we will focus on outlining developments in three key areas: how we are marketing our solution, how our solution works, and how we run our service operations.
In this month’s post I want to outline our approach to product marketing and the key activities or initiatives we will take on to ensure we maximize interest in our solution. Marketing strategy often hinges on the “Marketing Mix” or the “Four P’s”: Product, Place, Price, and Promotion. Because we are developing a market-driven solution using emerging technologies, we have put our own spin on these terms and adapted our own marketing mix to emphasize Solution over Product, Access over Place, Value over Price, and Education over Promotion.
- By focusing on Solution, we define our offering based on the needs that it meets rather than the features it has.
- By focusing on Access, we can better build an integrated presence that considers our customer’s entire purchasing journey, operational processes, and IT structure.
- By focusing on Value, we can stress the benefits and opportunities of the solution relative to costs.
- By focusing on Education, we can promote a deeper level of understanding amongst decision makers in the organizations that Modum wants to support.
Modum’s adapted marketing mix is the starting point for the activities we are focusing on at the moment. With these activities, our goal is to show all potential customers the value Modum can provide for them. This month we initiated activities in four key areas to ensure a successful go-to-market process, each of these activities addresses several of the four aspects of our “mix”:
Product Marketing Material
The ongoing production of marketing material has been a tremendous endeavour that — as consumers who are exposed to it daily — we often forget how hard it is to do well. Product marketing material supports education, explaining Modum’s value, and of course outlines the solution we have built. It is a fundamental tool for understanding the unique benefits of our solution and how they meet the needs of our clients.
Because adding value to our client’s operations is at the core of what we do, we feel that our product marketing material should follow suit. As such, we are carefully expanding on our suite of material, which supports both potential and current users by tailoring it to individual customer groups to make benefits clear. We are excited to be working with experienced consultants, so that the first versions of our product brochure and user manual will meet our clients’ needs. We are also creating product videos for instructional and promotional purposes and updating our website. We are currently working towards a release date for this material that lines up with the day our solution is officially commercially available, so that our channels feel immediately more product focused.
As I have pointed out in earlier posts, working with our implementation partners including SAP and Deloitte helps us to gain exposure to new audiences and connect with their existing enterprise clients. Partner activities are important for creating access to our solution and emphasizing how easily it can be integrated with global track-and-trace solutions, ERP software, warehousing and inventory processes, and other measures to fulfil GDP compliance. This month we have continued to build up our partner network across Europe and Asia, with promising meetings in Spain, Vietnam, and Thailand.
As an example of our ongoing partner activities, last week we participated in a day of presentations in SAP’s Intelligent Enterprise Truck as it toured through Basel to visit key clients. The truck is a very exciting tool that allows for immersive presentations. Modum’s presentation followed one on SAP’s Global Track-and-Trace solutions. Scheduled together, they effectively outlined how our temperature monitoring can be integrated into a larger set of supply chain monitoring frameworks. The event provided an exciting opportunity to speak directly to decision makers from organizations that are using these solutions. While this is only one example of a partner activity, it show how valuable they can be by connecting us directly with the right people early on, facilitating exciting opportunities for client workshops and discussion.
Conferences and Events
Conferences and events have been a critical component of our direct marketing and promotion since the beginning, they provide an immediate connection with audiences. Although we have been presenting Modum at conferences and events over the past two years, the type of conferences and events we are targeting throughout our go-to-market process is new. No longer pitching at start-up events, we are securing slots at several industry-specific events across the US, Europe, and Asia through the end of this year with even more in our outlook for Q1 2019. Our goal is to educate potential users across several industries including pharma logistics, smart packaging, and anti- counterfeiting about Modum’s solution.
For example, this month we spoke at industry events across Europe, including the 7th Annual Pharma Anti-Counterfeiting and Serialisation conference in London where our Director of Business Development discussed our solution’s ability to provide data integrity and insights that support serialized processes and anti-counterfeiting efforts. This was the first time that this USP was outlined for an audience of prospective customers and we are delighted to report that it was very well-received.
Conferences and customer workshops also allow us to validate our product’s value and subsequent pricing strategies. Here, we receive the valuable feedback that ensures our solution will be successful. We have benefitted from conducting these in several markets, including Asia. Before the end of the year we have a few more customer workshops planned, including a trip to Singapore in October and Bangkok in November for the Asia Cold Chain Show 2018.
Similar to our shifting focus towards industry conferences and events, our communications efforts are becoming more focused on customer-specific publications. We have a number of new stories to tell as our product becomes more and more integrated within the operations of our current pilot customers. We will be working to position these stories within highly relevant industry publications to educate and explain the value of our solution to professionals in pharma and supply chain operations, quality management, and related industries.
Of course, a portion of our communications energy will continue to go to recruitment efforts so that we can grow our team to scale our ongoing operations. Modum is a sponsor at this year’s WomenHack in Zurich, a networking and speed dating recruitment event. Modum Engineer Monika and UX Manager Andrea represented Modum at the event last week. The community of female developers, engineers, and designers in Zurich is strong and we are eager to continue to support events like this.
I hope that this month’s outline of how education, access, and value are fundamental to driving our marketing activities has brought clarity to what the team has been working on. However, as the revised terms in our marketing mix suggest: solution, first and foremost, is at the core of what we do and provides the basis for what we are marketing. I am already looking forward to next month’s update, where I will provide an overview of how our solution works. Until then, have a great October.
– Simon Dössegger
September 30, 2018