The Debonair Commercialist

A blog about crafting compelling propositions and cultivating commercial nous

Category: Commercial and proposition news

Propositions and innovation in the news: 31 July 2016

Knowledge@Wharton, Can Verizon Unlock Yahoo’s ‘Hidden Value’?

Harvard Business Review,  How Amazon Adapted Its Business Model to India

Market Watch,  Pokémon Go shows that augmented reality isn’t ready for prime time


Propositions and innovation in the news: 24 July 2016

Why Prime Day Was a Big Win for Amazon — and for Other Retailers

The challenge of selling technology experiences

Time to Accelerate in the Race Toward Industry 4.0

Propositions and innovation in the news: 19 June 2016

Apple Faces an Artificial Intelligence Challenge

Will Microsoft’s LinkedIn Purchase Pay Off?

Manufacturing Companies Need to Sell Outcomes, Not Products

Propositions and innovation in the news: 12 June 2016

Tesla’s real problem isn’t that its cars are expensive. It’s that they’re unreliable.

As Amazon takes on the UK grocery market, can it deliver a profit?

How Telcos Can Become Video’s Next Big Star

Propositions and innovation in the news: 5 June 2016

In defense of online lending

A Tool to Map Your Next Digital Initiative

2016 Global 2000: The World’s Largest Transportation Companies

Propositions and innovation in the news: 30 May 2016

Technological innovation is often simply an innovation in how we think about technology

Why Amazon is the king of innovation: Online retail mastery

How Blockchain Technology Will Disrupt Financial Services Firms

Propositions in the news this week: 23 May 2016

Latest Thinking Blog: Where are you on the digital wave? The importance of digital segmentation

HBR: How Your Leadership Has to Change as Your Startup Scales

K@W Weekend Edition: Beyond 10,000 Hours of Practice: What Experts Do Differently




Propositions in the news this week: 15 May 2016

Several interesting articles from this past week on proposition development:

In Product Development, Let Your Customers Define Perfection



The Four Elements of a Commercial Proposition – My Propositions Mantra

I call it the Propositions Mantra. Just as you repeat a mantra and it expresses a strong belief, the four elements in my propositions mantra are the basis of any new proposition that we launch.

We have all read in the marketing textbooks about ‘value propositions’ and ‘unique selling propositions’ before, yet you can rarely see in detail which of those four points sits behind the expression and how these are linked to commercial parameters. And I am always amused how the commercial angle is conveniently omitted!

My Commercial Propositions mantra: Relevant, Focused, Differentiated and Profitable.

4 Proposition Elements - Relevant, Focused, Differentiated and Profitable

In later posts, I will focus on each key ingredient of the commercial proposition in greater depth, but here I want to outline the four pillars.

Four questions whose answers build a winning proposition

  1. Relevant: What is the strong market (or segment) insight that makes us believe there is an opportunity to monetize?
  2. Focused: What product or service capability are we offering to address this market opportunity?
  3. Differentiated: What makes us believe that we can address this opportunity better than the competition? Why us? – Hint: ‘this is the ‘Unique’ in the ‘Unique Service Proposition’ expression.
  4. Profitable: Can our product or service address this opportunity profitably?

Skipping even one of those questions or having weak, unsatisfactory answers to any of the questions means that your business will be wasting good money on a mediocre proposition.

In my experience, all questions need to be treated equally and it is the job of the propositions manager to gather expertise from other teams in order to address those in a way that drives the idea forward.

If you have any questions, or you want to share stories, lessons learned around proposition development and commercial innovation please feel free to leave a comment.
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