This article is part of a series in which we provide an in-depth look into various aspects and techniques Spotzer uses to make our partner’s digital products and services successful.
One of the great things about working with Spotzer is the ability to tap into a well of knowledge about digital marketing around the world. Through our work with partners and customers in Europe, Oceania and North America, we keep generating useful insights about what works - and what does not. Such insights can be an invaluable source of ideation and serve as early indicators of new trends or challenges.
A great example is the e-commerce boom. By analysing the markets and talking to customers over the years, Spotzer saw a steady rise in e-commerce orders. But quite a few partners were reluctant to invest in e-commerce solutions. So when the pandemic hit, speeding up many trends by five or more years, they were caught off-guard. Fortunately, Spotzer has invested significantly in its proprietary technical stack, product knowledge and teams. The best-in-class, fast turn-around meant we rolled out new e-commerce solutions for partners in a matter of weeks, with the demand almost doubling.
In his seminal book "Good Strategy, Bad Strategy", Richard P. Rumelt notices that strategy is about discovering the context and the obstacles and then focusing the organisation on overcoming them. The partners that recognised the growing importance of e-commerce and purposefully invested in the required capabilities could help their customers without delay, allowing these small businesses to start selling online in a matter of days. Undoubtedly, that helped to keep some of them afloat - and these customers won't forget that. To earn such loyalty, these organisations had to identify and invest in the right opportunities. At Spotzer, we were happy to collaborate with our partners on strategic matters as well as fulfilment.
Inevitably though, global insights and trends tell only part of the story. To succeed, we must ensure that our solutions meet local demands. Some of them are on the surface: GDPR compliance (EU); business culture (USA); legal requirements (Germany); unique payment options (Australia). Many, however, require scrupulous work with internal and external data.
Take the UK as an example. It already has a mature market for digital products and services. Over the years, it grew more and more competitive. So last year, in an attempt to escape the race to the bottom and give Sales teams additional ammunition, our teams did a deep dive into the market. Rather than relying on popular stats easily found on the web (without much context or credibility), we went through hundreds of pages of government reports and relevant research. Crucially though, we could also examine the historical data at our disposal, from patterns for specific categories to the dependencies between revision rounds and ultimate performance. We could also interview Sales teams to get a first-hand account of the challenges they faced and compare it to the feedback we received from customers during the caring calls.
The outcome was a concise yet effective set of recommendations that helped improve the scope and positioning of our products. As an example, a deeper understanding of SMBs’ concerns around complexity and time investment led to changes to the support level (introduction of unlimited standard changes) and reduction in time-to-approval (through changes to the workflow and re-focusing resources on the items with the highest value by cutting off everything else).
Not only has this helped from Sales and Operations perspectives, but certain lessons we have learned along the way were later used successfully in other markets.