Unlocking the Customer Value Chain — Thales S Teixeira

  1. Phase 1 — Unbundling
    This was a phase wherein you could purchase a single favorite song track. You need not have to purchase the entire CD inorder to listen to that one favorite song of yours. Companies like Apple made it possible to do so. Same goes with TV channels. You need not have to purchase a package of 100 other channels inorder to get those 2–3 favorite channels of yours.
    This is unbundling. The separation of products and services from one giant bundle to a single offering. Customers get to buy only those products and services that they wanted.
  2. Phase 2 — Disintermediation
    This phase resulted in the elimination of middle men as as Companies could reach out to their customers directly. Prior to this, middle men who acted as an interface between the Producer and the Consumer. The internet allowed customization of products and services that suited individual Customers. Take the example of Travel. Earlier you’d go to travel agents and based on your criteria, Travel Agents would book your tickets. Now with Kayak.com and other travel booking sites, many users prefer to book their own travel.
  3. Phase 3 — Decoupling (This is what the book is about!)
    In this phase Startups (especially), identify the activities that customers perform while buying a product or a service. Once identified, these Startups kept some of these activities for themselves while allowing incumbents to retain those activities that were difficult to replicate or had a high cost to setup. These steps or activities that customers perform while purchasing a product or service is known as a Customer Value Chain (CVC).
    Example: Inorder to drive a car, a customer would perform these steps:
    1) Search 2) Go to various showrooms 3) Inquire about price and features 4) Pay 5) Own 6) Drive. These steps are steps in a CVC. These are how traditional car manufacturing companies operated.
    Enter ZipCar. Their innovation was separating the activities ‘owning a car’ & ‘driving it’. Inorder to drive a car, you no longer needed to ‘own’ a car.



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