Our corporate clients require new information, new competence and new formats and accordingly we are faced with the challenge of updating our offering to meet the needs of the market and the corporate client.
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What this means is it makes great sense to annually once a year sit down and analyse our portfolios and one way of doing this is with the BCG matrix from the Boston Consulting group.
The BCG Matrix was originally developed to understand the product life cycle. It can be applied really well to reflecting on your offerings as intercultural trainers. The BCG matrix consists of four types of offerings or products:
Your question marks, which are new ideas for new training or new formats or new content we haven’t designed into training offerings just yet. Topics which ideally, nobody ideally else is offering which will give us an advantage on the market.
When we turn those into real offerings, these new training topics are our stars. Products which have designed which not everyone else is offering, making it cutting edge, state of the art. If you have stars you have higher margins and higher demand for your services.
The third category or quadrant on the matrix are our cash cows which are basically products and services – in our case training content and concepts that make up a large part of our business. This is what fills our fridge, pays our bills keep the wolf from the door. in many cases, these were our stars a while before, however now the market has caught up with us and others are offering them as well. Cash cows often have a reasonable margin, however as others are offering the same topic with time this margin dwindles.
This is when the cash cow becomes what they call a poor dog. The type of training product that every else offers, that is mass market, ten a penny, which you have delivered so often you have stopped enjoying it. It’s worth bearing in mind that our question marks of today will one day become stars, then cash cows and one day our poor dogs. It often takes courage to let go of the poor dogs and stop doing them and focus on the products that bring us forward instead.