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Beyond the Foundations Using the Edge Strategy to Drive Growth

August 18, 2016

Business owners launch their companies with a singular goal in mind: to be the best. But what happens after initial success?

You don't need to reinvent the wheel. Instead, explore ideas and related possibilities throughout your business. Called the edge strategy, this practice can help you discover potential opportunities for fresh growth. 

Such an approach allows you to look beyond your core offering to consider expansion and advancement. Plus, it can lower the likelihood and risk of innovating for the sake of innovation—i.e., without purpose. 

Innovation, after all, isn’t something to shy away from. But it also doesn’t have to mean a complete overhaul. 

One of the best ways to keep an established business successful is to follow the edge strategy. Here are three specific ways you can do that:

1. Examine Your Product Edge. Take a good look at your products and services, imagining you’re a consumer. What would you want that isn’t currently offered and what is a related possibility? Overlay these insights with detailed customer feedback to discover how you can adapt existing features to improve your core offering.

2. Explore the Customer Journey Edge. Effectively engaging consumers drives business success. To understand how they can—and do—engage with you, walk through the process from their viewpoint. Is the flow of information and purchasing streamlined? Is the message aligned and engaging throughout? This can help you discover ways to further tailor your efforts—whether that means offering more support, honing the message, or redesigning the customer experience.

3. Build from the Enterprise Edge. Identifying resources and capabilities that extend from your existing product or service can help you create additional value offerings. Along the way, evaluate whether new initiatives should target a new demographic. Perhaps the production of an add-on part can increase sales while improving the existing product’s abilities. Or maybe you’d profit by creating a similar product or service with fewer amenities or an advanced version with all the bells and whistles.

From Edge Strategy to Rollout:

> Stay in tune with industry changes to ensure you’re up to date, evaluating what aspects of your current model need to be improved to remain competitive.

> Choose an edge strategy focus for improving the current model.

> Gather a team to brainstorm, evaluate current products and services, and innovate for the future.

> Test ideas and prototype enhancements to determine effectiveness.

> Once results show a high likelihood of success, begin production!

Did you know: Sales for 55% of new products
start to decline by their second year of production?