Outcome-Based Persona


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In a recent blog post and several others, Increase your Innovation Capacity: Manage your Sphere of Influence, I contend that the typical tools such as marketing funnels, customer journeys or sales cycles limits us to Goods-dominant logic (GD-logic) thinking and prevents us from viewing from the perspective of Service Dominant Logic (SD-Logic). If that is not a big enough picture, it is what separates commoditized products/services from building an eco-system and platforms such as Starbucks, Amazon or Apple.

What I like to create is a different type of mapping strategy that I call Outcome-Based mapping and is derived from the non-profit world of Outcome Mapping. What makes it unique is it focuses on changing behavior through boundary partners (influencers).

In an Outcome-Based Mapping approach, we recognize that a change of behavior must occur for us to achieve our goals or make the desired impact that wish to obtain. In traditional sales and marketing we can develop the simplest of all marketing funnels based on a pre-purchase, purchase (buy), and post purchase. We have a tendency to complicate this into numerous steps and activities. When we view an outcome-based approach we like to separate the group very similarly into Expect to see, like to see and love to see. We can separate it more into something similar to a customer journey may but the point is not get to prescriptive on the actions but continue to focus on the behaviors.

I created an outcome persona of how we may look at a boundary partner in the outline below. It is important to note that every block is not expected to be completed, and certain components in the persona may not have to change to create the desired outcome.


Along the top, we identify the partner and create the standard columns of Expect to see, Like to see and Love to see. We write several scenarios of  the outcomes of each column. I like to view the upside and the downside of each scenario instead of thinking. Also, try not to create the best case scenario a replication of the next column.

The bottom two-thirds of the board consist of using the BACKS measurement process. More about this process is in the post, The BACKS Approach to Building an Eco-System.  Again, I emphasize that each component of BACKS will not be completed for every block. If it is, you probably have narrowed the definition of a boundary partner or influence to much. On the other hand, there should be changes in at least 50% (roughly) or you have not defined the he partner enough.

This approach, I have found allows me to move away from viewing a customer as a transaction and allows me to view them from a behavior standpoint. It is an entirely different way of segmenting and organizing your efforts.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Joseph Dager
Business901 is a firm specializing in bringing the continuous improvement process to the sales and marketing arena. He has authored the books the Lean Marketing House, Marketing with A3 and Marketing with PDCA. The Business901 Blog and Podcast includes many leading edge thinkers and has been featured numerous times for its contributions to the Bloomberg's Business Week Exchange.


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