From Sales Orientation to Market Orientation

A sales-oriented business remains focused on the next deal and the opportunity it represents. This orientation is natural for start-ups going after their initial revenue, and for companies serving a small number of large customers, each with distinct needs. In order to control costs, grow revenue, and compete, such a business must find points of leverage, components of its offering that can be offered as-is to multiple customers. Inevitably, it must transition into a market-oriented business.

A market-oriented business focuses on a multiplicity of opportunities represented by an entire market. This orientation is required for mature companies pursuing continued revenue, and for companies serving a large number of small customers having common needs that are well-defined.

The transition from sales-orientation to market-orientation is a difficult one. The core product may have to be painstakingly separated from customer-specific innovations that were previously so precious in landing “the next deal”. Legacy support costs will mount if customers are not motivated to upgrade. Some may choose to leave rather than suffering through the transition.

Tags: Business

Created at: 3 March 2008 9:03 AM