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Develop a Proactive Major Customer Relationship

The Challenge: Our client serves a fast-paced industry with short product cycles and rapid innovation. Its business is global and generally involves major customer relationships. In some country markets, all of the client’s sales were to a single customer organization. The company’s executives described their situation as constantly losing ground on a treadmill that was going faster and faster. In several recent instances, they lost business to a competitor who was able to respond far more quickly to a customer’s request.

Assessment: Research into our client’s business environment suggested that while the industry was indeed fast-paced, there were distinct global market segments with predictable patterns. The ideal solution for a customer in one market segment was likely to be interesting to customers who were on similar technology paths in other market segments. And the competitive challenges that were likely to be intense in one market environment were far less of a threat in other environments. Across the globe, select market segments were used as prototypes to understand emerging priorities and to predict the strategies most likely to be successful with each of the major customers viewed as critical to the future. Armed with this understanding of the distinct segments within each major customer’s portfolio, we helped our client to develop clear insights about margin opportunities and growth prospects across their customers.

Strategic Solution: Collaboratively, Blue Canyon developed a set of priority customer targets reflecting global market segments in which success was likely and rewards were attractive. These decisions surrounding priority customers allowed the firm to better align its product and technology development priorities with the optimal allocation of its sales resources. In parallel, the firm developed explicit action plans for each key targeted relationship, including customer approaches which emphasized the gains that could be realized from forward-looking relationships and collaboration on product development.

Results: Our client is enjoying a significant increase in both volume and margins as a result of its targeted strategy and has developed a favorable reputation with its strategic account relationships in these targeted segments for being ahead of opportunities.

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