Apollo Method for Market Dominance

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Now and start your journey toward winning your
space race as the Go-To!

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Find out how to achieve sustainable differentiation and profitable growth as the Go-To in your market!

What They Love About the Book

Skip Battle

                 Clear, sustainable differentiation is the key to long-term, profitable growth in competitive markets. Here, Theresa is offering a straightforward, four-part plan for getting there. All you have to do is implement it.

Skip Battle

Senior Fellow, The Aspen Institute, and past or present board member at Netflix, LinkedIn, Workday, Expedia, FICO, OpenTable, and others

Steve Blank

               Learn how to stop competing on price and leaving money on the table. Finally, there’s a book that offers a simple path to higher revenues and gross margins.

Steve Blank

Silicon Valley thought leader and author, The Four Steps to the Epiphany

Tina Seelig

                 I’ve personally learned so much from Theresa about how to achieve and sustain differentiation and market leadership, and I am so glad that she is sharing her vast wisdom on strategy with the world.

Tina Seelig

Professor of the Practice, Stanford University, and author, What I Wish I Knew When I Was 20

Al Burgess

                  In today’s fast-changing world, strategic planning must happen on a daily basis and be a core skill and language that everyone in your organization shares. Theresa’s Apollo Method for Market Dominance builds on what we did together at Accenture and will provide a foundation for your collective pursuit of sustainable market leadership.

Al Burgess

Founder and former Global Managing Partner, Communications Industry Group, Accenture

Peggy Burke

               Theresa’s book is a goldmine of advice and practical techniques written by a strategy and marketing guru. It should be required reading for all executives and their teams responsible for profitable growth.

Peggy Burke

Founder of legendary Silicon Valley digital branding agency, 1185 Design

James Strock

                 In her timely, highly readable new book, Theresa shares a proven, actionable approach that can help every member of your organization participate in establishing your company as the Go-To brand.

James Strock

Author, Serve to Lead

Anneke Seley

               Using illuminating stories from The Apollo Space program, Accenture, Disney, Apple, Tesla, Amazon and others, Theresa shares her framework for establishing sustainable market leadership. Business leaders will appreciate her spot-on insights, fun writing style and focus on results.

Anneke Seley

Coauthor, Sales 2.0 and Next Era Selling

                Theresa mashes business case studies and personal anecdotes into engaging lessons about how to distinguish your brand, add value to your offerings, and earn financial rewards. This book offers turn-by-turn insights to help you reach your business goals.

Stuart Gannes

Silicon Valley startup board member and former Associate Editor, Fortune Magazine

Meet the Author

THERESA M. LĪNA has over twenty years of experience as a recognized Silicon Valley thought leader and strategist. She is the CEO of Līna Group, Inc., which specializes in market dominance strategy, and has been involved at Stanford University since 2006. Theresa’s engaging and entertaining presentation style makes her a popular speaker and workshop leader on strategy, market leadership, and innovation.

Her expertise comes from extensive firsthand experience and research. She has served as chief strategy and marketing officer for several technology startups, has advised hundreds of companies, and began her career at Accenture, where she helped found, lead, and grow the firm’s communications industry group, now a multibillion-dollar business unit.

Have You Read the Book?

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What is the Apollo Method
for Market Dominance?

If your company (or you as a sole proprietor) operate in a competitive market, you likely face a big challenge: When companies aren’t differentiated in a very clear and obvious way that ties to results, they are forced to compete on price, which leads to declining profits. This prevents them from investing in innovation and growth. It may even put them out of business.

Instead, every company should stand out as the recognized Go-To for its ability to solve a common, critical market problem in a unique, exceptionally effective way. This sets the company apart and converts it from a commodity to a rare, sought-after resource for which customers are willing to pay a premium.

The Apollo Method for Market Dominance™ can guide you on this journey to market leadership. It is a step-by-step strategic framework for becoming invaluable to customers and hard to imitate. It uses the Apollo space program as a metaphor, because many of the key success factors for achieving John F. Kennedy’s vision of dominance in space through a lunar landing also apply to a company that wants win its own market space race.

Get the details in the book, Be the Go-To: How to Own Your Competitive Market, Charge More, and Have Customers Love You For It.

Supplemental Resources
Mentioned in the Book

Worksheets and Tools

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Links and Notes

Chapter 1

Commoditization Is Enemy #1
  • Contribution Margin – This is an important metric for understanding how profitable your individual products and services are. It’s extremely valuable, because often, a relatively effortless improvement to contribution margin will generate a lot more cash to the bottom line than a much more arduous increase in sales. This article explains contribution margins. It’s not unusual for a company to unknowingly have negative contribution margins, which means that every sale is actually depleting cash profit rather than increasing it.

Chapter 5

Launch Phase

Industry and Company Analysis Frameworks

Problem Identification and Product Development Methodologies

  • Design Thinking: Originally created as a product design technique to ensure industrial designers engaged users and started their process by evaluating user needs, Design Thinking has evolved into a framework for creative problem solving.
  • Product and Service Design: Various resources from what was once Adaptive Path and is now Capital Design.
  • Lean Startup (Website): An approach inspired by Steve Blank’s Customer Development Methodology and formalized by Eric Ries
    Lead Startup Book
  • Customer Development – Part 1 (Article):Steve Blank’s Part 1 explanation of what’s wrong with most product development methodologies and why it’s essential to start with customer and market
  • Customer Development – Part 2 (Article): Steve Blank’s Part 2 explanation of what’s wrong with most product development methodologies and why it’s essential to start with customer and market
  • Customer Development – Part 3 (Article): Steve Blank’s Part 3 explanation of what’s wrong with most product development methodologies and why it’s essential to start with customer and market
  • Customer Development – Part 4 (Article): Steve Blank’s Part 4 explanation of what’s wrong with most product development methodologies and why it’s essential to start with customer and market
  • Quick Overview of Different Methodologies (Article): This is one of many articles that provide an overview and comparison of different product development methodologies that are mostly rooted in software development but are now more commonly applied to tangible products as well. A quick web search will turn up many more articles, books and resources.

Why/What/How Message Framework

Buyer Personas

Chapter 6

Ignite Phase

Customer Journey Mapping

  • Customer Journey Mapping Overview (Article): Older-but-still-relevant Harvard Business Review article explaining what this is, providing a framework for creating customer journey maps, and a variety of useful links.
  • Customer Journey Case Example and How to Improve It (Article):
  • Why Customer Journey Mapping is Powerful (Article): A McKinsey article on the value of customer journey mapping, along with a good example.
  • One Step-by-Step Approach to Customer Journey Mapping: This is good basic approach to customer journey mapping. Though there may be some missing pieces, and it’s geared toward online and smaller businesses, it’s a good start for anyone new to the concept. I’m not as crazy about the examples of the customer journey maps they show, so do some online image searches for examples that more closely align to your business. Ideally your map will be as visually literal as possible to help your team empathize and “live” the journey as they review it.
  • Important caveats I don’t see discussed in much of the above or elsewhere:
    • It’s not about you: Define the journey from the customer’s perspective, not yours – what are they after? What experience are they seeking? What do they actually encounter, good or bad? This means starting the journey even before they start to realize they have a need. (Looking at pre-need can help you uncover important opportunities to accelerate the process of them realizing they have a problem.)
    • One size does not fit all: Capture the customer journey and then look at it through the lens of different segments and personas; usually you need more than one journey. You can then look for overlaps and gaps. This may also help you figure out which personas to focus on when resources are limited.
    • Go all the way: You need to define the entire experience, start to finish and to start again (ideally you want repeat business, referrals, etc.). Many maps are focused on the buying experience and stop shortly after the sale. You want to lay out the full lifecycle in their experience with you.
    • Look outside: Consider mapping the journey customers have with your competitors and role models. This usually uncovers excellent opportunities.

Sales and Sales Management

Chapter 7

Navigate Phase

Account-Based Marketing (ABM)

  • Contrary to what you’ll read, account-based marketing (ABM) was not pioneered in the early aughts but rather has been around since the 1970s, if not before. For example, targeting and treating major accounts as markets unto themselves was a major, differentiating strength of IBM’s when it was a dominant force in mainframe computing. Today’s use of the term often focuses on digital marketing tactics, but ABM should be approached in a much more strategic way.
    • The New Strategic Selling (book): This classic by Robert Miller and Stephen Heiman provides a great overview of what’s involved in the Complex Sale, mostly encountered in enterprise sales – a selling situation involving multiple buyer stakeholders across multiple organizations. This book provides a great primer on the dynamics at work and what it takes to sell a solution in these situations. Anyone involved in account-based marketing activity needs to understand these dynamics.
    • Overview (video) and access to additional resources(articles, research, training): Regardless of your industry, ITSMA is by far your most credible and sophisticated resource for learning about ABM. Most online articles discuss it as a B2B version of digital marketing, but it’s much more strategic and profound than that. After following the link, scroll to the first video for a brief primer on ABM and why you should care. From there, you can explore research, articles, and training on the topic.

Chapter 9

Your One-Page Flight Plan

Program and Project Management

  • The Distinction Between Programs and Projects, Plus Other Basics (article)
  • A Projet Management Primer (e-book): This provides an introduction to some basic project management principles and terminology. It is not a methodology, and it is dated (2005). Use it just as an introduction to some basic project management concepts.
  • Project Management Institute (articles, training, certifications):
  • PMI is a trade association and the authority on all things program and project management.
  • What a Gantt Chart Is (article): The Gantt Chart is an extremely useful tool for visually illustrating a program or project schedule. It conveys what has to happen when during a program or project, where the activity overlaps are, and which activities are critical path items (i.e., others can’t start until it is completed). This article provides a brief overview. While Gantt Charts are used widely by people with program or project management training, they are invaluable and can be used by anyone responsible for managing multi-step activities, projects or programs. You can easily create it in Excel. There are also numerous online project management tools.

General Information

 

  • Click Here to get the complete set of over 400 end notes documenting sources used in the book.

Recommended Reading

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