Digital Blue Ocean Strategy: The Path to Creating Value from Complex Sales
This article introduces the concept of a digital Blue Ocean Strategy. By transforming complex sales through digital technology, businesses can save money and scale, while simultaneously creating demand by bringing greater value to their buyers.
In some industries, buying and selling products and services is costly and difficult both for businesses and their customers. Common examples include insurance or real estate companies dealing with factors such as:
- Large transactions with long sales cycles
- Intermediaries like brokers, agents, affiliates, referral partners or distributors
- Legal contracts with variable terms
- Negotiable or tiered pricing and bundled products
- Customized service and invoicing
While many still rely on manual operations for navigating nuanced sales, technology is changing this across the board.
With a digital Blue Ocean Strategy, businesses can differentiate themselves and create new markets where complicated, manual processes formerly stunted growth.
Take, for example, websites like Travelocity or Expedia. These companies transformed a formerly costly and complex sales process into a scalable business model. They made the traditional travel agent obsolete. In fact, most people in their 20s or 30s have likely never purchased airline tickets through a traditional travel agent.
Online powerhouses such as Amazon, Netflix, Airbnb, and Uber have all disrupted and streamlined their respective industries, creating smooth buying and selling experiences. Companies are finding blue oceans by simplifying traditionally complicated consumer purchases, such as cars and homes.
Learn more about disruptive tech tools: “How to Dissolve Sales Bottlenecks with the Right Web App.”
What is a Blue Ocean?
DIGITAL BLUE OCEAN STRATEGY | Blue Ocean Strategy (a method developed by W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne in their 2004 book) is the pursuit of uncrowded market space through product differentiation and lower cost.
When a business can occupy new market space on its own, it makes the competition irrelevant. Inversely, red oceans represent the known market spaces, where the competition is fierce.
Blue Ocean Strategy reminds us that the sales funnel can be simplified as a method for differentiation. Companies who do so can position themselves in a fresh marketplace with no relevant competition.
Finding a Blue Ocean through Digitally Transformed Sales
DIGITAL BLUE OCEAN STRATEGY | When we talk about digital sales strategy, we’re referring to using digital solutions to solve sales problems. It’s not just technology for technology’s sake. It’s the strategic use of available technologies to create new value where complicated processes formerly hindered progress.
Creative use of digital solutions can streamline the customer experience while landing a company in new market territory – the blue ocean.
How Digital Transformation Adds Value to Your Business
A digitally streamlined sales process can save your business money in three important ways:
1. It reduces the hours invested in each new opportunity or lead.
2. It reduces the average seniority of the sales staff.
3. It acts as a filter by decreasing the opportunities you pursue and allows you to focus on the best ones.
How Digital Transformation Adds Value to Your Customers
A digitally streamlined sales process adds value to your customers in three important ways:
1. It increases preference for your product or service by helping clients achieve progress.
2. Buyers can generate additional revenue through renewals and upsells.
3. Buyers can profitably scale their customer base.
You Can Find a Blue Ocean
When you look at the components of a complex sales process, the tendency is to view them as obstacles. In reality, those obstacles represent a big blue ocean. With a digital sales strategy, your business can resolve the inefficiencies that cost you money and cause friction for customers, creating a new standard for business in your industry.
Learn more about simplifying sales to create new markets in our free webinar, Automating Sales Processes to Scale (A Practical 3-Phase Strategy).
Automating Sales Processes to Scale (A Practical 3-Phase Strategy)
Free Webinar Download: Understand what drives sales automation, how to identify friction in the sales process and practical ways to increase sales velocity with technology.
Kevin Hurwitz and Deanna Dial discuss how to differentiate your business, rapidly scale top-line revenue, and increase profits by reducing friction in the sales process. Download a recording of this live webinar.