The Lean B2B Methodology

Rooted in Customer Development and Strategic Selling, taking elements from The Lean Startup, Jobs to be Done Theory, and customer research in B2B, The Lean B2B Methodology’s core purpose is to maximize the odds of adoption of new technological innovations in B2B.

Outside-In Innovation

Too often, B2B solutions are designed outside-in. Founders and innovators set out with an incomplete understanding of their prospects’ needs, goals, motivations, and realities.

They stack assumptions, and get to market where they then struggle to systematically learn from customers to gain ground, and establish their foothold.

This leads to inertia, and trememendous loss of potential for innovators. The harsh reality is that startup runways are always limited.

Fail to reach product/market fit within the first two years, and fatigue sets in, the window of opportunity shifts, investors or sponsors become disengaged, team and employees begin to get excited by other ventures, or the money simply runs out.

To succeed, entrepreneurs and innovators need a playbook that gets them across the chasm of the early days, fast.

The Old Way

Ten years ago, companies were starting their migrations to the Cloud. There were 50 times less competitors than there are today. Innovators could throw solutions over the wall, and expect that at least a sliver of the market would respond because, quite frankly, customers didn’t have a lot of choices to choose from.

Companies that were doing customer research– following customer development best practices–had an edge over their competitors. If a product didn’t work, customers were willing to work with innovators to help get them back on track.

These collaborations helped many of the leading B2B players today gain their initial entries; it has created significant value for their founders, and investors. Today, however, the shift to the Cloud is largely over. Technologies are entering organizations top-down, middle-out, and bottom-up faster than ever.

Evolution of the Marketing Technology Landscape (2011-2020)

It’s easier than it’s ever been to create new products, to get prospects to try them, and to get them considered by stakeholders in mid-to large organizations; the barriers to entry have mostly disappeared. Now, more than ever, the best products can win.

With so much competition, shift in opportunities, and competing positionings, the true challenge has moved away from building and validating products to gaining adoption in increasingly crowded and fragmented markets.

New products need to cut through the noise, deliver significant new value, and gain enough momentum quickly to be able to firmly establish their companies on the market before competitors are able to react.

What The Lean B2B Methodology Can Do

The Lean B2B Methodology is the result of years of research and experimentation into B2B entrepreneurship.

It’s an ever-evolving set of principles designed to help B2B entrepreneurs and innovators cut through the noise to get their technologies adopted in mid-to large organizations.

Customers have become less patient and willing to tolerate products that fail to deliver value. The Lean B2B Methodology helps innovators create differentiated products, establish relationships in companies to start learning, and validate that their products will get bought, adopted, and ultimately, used by customers.

The Second Edition of
Lean B2B

The Lean B2B Methodology is a B2B innovator’s secret weapon. The methodology is based on hundreds of discussions with successful and unsuccessful B2B entrepreneurs, thousands of hours of research and experimentation, and key input from leading B2B innovators.

The methodology is laid out in our books and courses. A major update to the methodology was released in 2022 via the second edition of Lean B2B: Build Products Businesses Want.