One of the most common questions I get is: What made you create the framework? With this blog I’m hoping to answer that question for all those that are curious about the Making of the ROUNDMAP™
First of all, I’ll need to explain a bit about myself. During my career as a salesman I often found myself drawn between the interests of my employer and that of my clients. In 1997, while employed at a worldwide financial powerhouse, I reached my threshold when a superior demanded me to sell a proposition to a client that I knew would hurt their business. Considering our relationship and given the non-disclosure agreement I was bound to, I fired myself. The customer understood the situation and denied to sign the contract in my absense. A few months later I was asked to assist a new supplier to support their proposition to my former client and I did. To build a reputation of trust takes years, to destroy it takes minutes. To be trustworthy is important to me.
Social Media Engagement
Ten years later I noticed the social network Twitter. What exited me about the social network was that people were so giving. Many shared their knowledge and insights abundantly while others offered their help without the need for financial compensation. It was a tit for tat all over. It was like a breath of fresh air in a world that had become, in my opinion, too indifferent, scrupless, harsh and money-driven.
In 2012 I found myself confined to a hospital bed, fighting another round against cancer. In between treatments my admiration of this new phenomenon of social cohesion drove me to analyze the social dynamics. This was the startingpoint of a process that would lead to the creation an all-encompassing model to describe the dynamics of strong customer relationships.
In the next photo album you can see some of the iterations on the framework:
Marketing by Attraction
The idea of a circular framework started in 2010 when I became convinced that marketing would benefit greatly if it were to be based on attraction, in stead of interruption.
I had defined each market participant (producer, supplier, distributor, retailer, customer, etc.) as an entity with value to spare on the one hand and value to gain on the other. Value is that what can be traded, swaped, bought or shared: goods, services, experiences, knowlegde, solutions, etc. This idea lead to the concept of a value hub, which I represented by a magnet.
Where value is needed, the pole would be negative. Where value was to spare, the pole would be positively charged. Thus forming transient value chains.
If two value hubs get close enough together to sense each others deficiency (need) and surplus (value proposition), this would automatically draw them together. Responses, during or after a transaction, are like magnetic field lines surrounding the earth, creating a natural feedback loop.
The scheme below explains my concept of a value hub:
Return or Refer
The essence of customer development, or customer extension as I prefer to call it, is that you would like your customers to either return more often or refer your brand to others. This is a circular process, similar to most of the recurring processes in nature (day and night, the tides, seasons, growing crops, etc.).
If you were to represent the Customer Lifecycle as a timeline or funnel, you’re unconsciously working towards the termination of that relationship at the end of the transactional process (DAC or Death After Conversion). By thinking circular, rather than linear, you’ll naturally start to work your way towards the next salescycle. Which is why it’s called a salescycle in the first place.
Have a look a some of these recurring processes:
All of the above still does not explain why I got so entangled to create something that was so hard to construct, yet no one ever expressed a demand for it. What made me so persistent?
Obviously, cancer did. Or rather surviving it twice. With the notion that a third time I might not be so lucky. I really wanted to create something of value. Something that could help someone, somewhere, somehow. Before it would be too late. That’s really all there is to it.
However, there are many elements in the framework that pride me. The fourth value discipline, Network Orchestration, not just completed Treacy and Wiersema’s value disciplines, but it opened up a new perspective, to new AS-A-SERVICE business models and ultimately to the Business Model Matrix™.
These new business models, Resource Centricity and Network Centricity, are truly significant and aligned with the Doughnut Economics of author and Oxford economist Kate Raworth. The Business Model Matrix™ now allow us to describe all business models holistically from one point of view.
One other thing that I hoped to achieve was to find new business models that did not rely on planned or perceive obsolescence. Instead, lead to more sustainable businesses. And I believe to have achieved precisely that by creating the Integrated Customer Lifecycle™ and the Business Model Matrix™.
On this last note, I’ll close this blogpost with a video on some of these destructive elements.