As a B2B market research firm, we need to deliver bad news to good people every day.
Maybe a company’s marketing and sales strategies are not working. Maybe the market they are trying to compete in is already overcrowded. Maybe their product or service is simply falling flat.
This is all bad news, but addressing it is the first step toward initiating change.
Hi, my name’s Sean Campbell and I’m the CEO of Cascade Insights. In this video, I want to talk about a phrase that we use quite a bit around here. It’s pretty simple. And it goes like this: We deliver bad news to good people.
So first off, what’s the kind of bad news that we deliver as a research? Well, we might deliver bad news related to your marketing efforts. We might tell you that your marketing campaigns are poorly constructed. We might tell you that your messaging simply doesn’t resonate. Or, that you’re targeting the wrong buyer persona when it comes to content and outreach efforts. Now all of this is bad news, but it does lead to change.
Another place that we might tell you bad news is related to your sales efforts. We might tell you that the strategies and tactics and kind of outreach efforts that you’re trying to do to prospects – they’re just not working. We might tell you that even your strategies and tactics, when it comes to current accounts, aren’t all that appropriate or that effective. Or we might tell you that a competitor’s just doing a better job selling than you and therefore their strategies and tactics, or maybe just the talent of their sales team, exceeds yours.
Another place that we might tell you bad news is related to products and services. We might tell you that in spite of your best efforts to create an award-winning solution, it’s falling flat. Or, that a competitor is doing a much better job when it comes to their product development efforts and they’re building features and capabilities that really matter to the marketplace. Or we might simply tell you that you’re in a crowded market and it’s gonna be really hard to survive or even thrive in the lane that you’re in today.
Now all of this is bad news. So where does the ray of sunshine come in? Where does the good people part fit? Well, this is pretty simple, but it’s key.
The people that come to us for research and they ask us to do a research effort on their behalf – they recognize that something was wrong. They recognize that something in their organization needed to change. And right there, we have the good people part. Because it’s so easy to recognize that something’s wrong in a company and not be the one to raise your hand and say something needs to change. On top of that, to say that we might not know the answer to our problem, we might have to go outside the organization and get some insights and some data and some conclusions and some recommendations so we can build a good plan. That’s kind of doubly challenging. So I think these are good people.
They’re willing to take that risk first off to say, they’re not sure how to solve the problem. And on top of that, just even saying that there is a problem to begin with. And when I think of these folks, I think of a quote from Frederick Douglas that he said: “Without any struggle, there is no progress.” And that’s what these folks are willing to do.
They’re willing to dive in and actually deal with the struggle. They’re willing to actually start there, get some really good answers to their problems and then figure out what they need to do to change and address those concerns. And so that’s why I think they’re good people. So around here, that’s why we think of ourselves as delivering bad news to good people.