Adjacent Areas Won't Waste 3/4s of Your Effort

I travelled by train for a couple of hours the other day, and took with me one of those wildly expensive and often turgid Harvard Business Reviews.  They also tend to be off-puttingly expensive for little return, so I was half-expecting to lose out on the deal.

A couple of articles though did appeal to me.  This first (by a pair called Zook and Allen) claimed to prevent you from wasting three-quarters of your expansion energies.  Not an unattractive headline.  Their theory goes that there are six proven avenues that create growth.  75% of growth initiatives fail as they do not follow any of them.  How many can apply to how a salesrep wants to grow their patch, and spank those quotas?

  1. sell along the ‘value chain’, understand what happens before and after your involved and sell something to them too
  2. develop new products/services into existing target market
  3. find new distribution channels, use other people selling into your target market
  4. enter new geographies
  5. address new segments through modified products or technologies
  6. attack ‘white space’, which means create something brand new into a hitherto unapproached market

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