A Dublin based technology company identified a market opportunity surrounding secure document storage solutions for people to safely file and access personal items of importance such as wills, insurance paperwork, power of attorney and after-life care instructions. Indeed, in today’s society, even storage of online access passwords has become an important component of a person’s estate and can lead to great confusion for future generations if not filed safely. The entrepreneurs involved were not just driven by commercial gains but saw a societal need for people, in their later years, to feel confident in their management of potential ‘intergenerational wealth’ accrued over a lifetime. The use of such a storage tool was identified as a good opportunity to open the conversation on succession rights with future generations. Quite similar to the Irish Hospice foundation’s Think Ahead movement which has opened the narrative on peoples’ preferences for end of life care and after-life wishes.
The company requested RIKON’s assistance with the development of its business model to fully develop the core building blocks and assess how best to position the product in the Irish marketplace. There was also research required into whether competing products had been established elsewhere in the past and to ascertain whether lessons could be learned from their model and positioning.
As the product had many potential benefits to many different customer cohorts there was significant work required to streamline the product’s value propositions and align these with a relevant target cohort. If too broad an approach was taken the product had the potential to become a confusing proposition which would prove very costly to promote once launched into the market.
RIKON carried out multiple workshops with the company involved to narrow down the potential of the product until the core value propositions of the product had been identified. The challenge here was finding a balance between the desires of the company to provide a societal benefit with the challenge of creating a commercially viable product.
- Product Positioning
Once the principal VPs had been established, RIKON conducted market research at home and abroad and studied how other companies, many of them international banks, had attempted similar enterprises with varying results. Many lessons were learned from this research, in particular about the positioning of the product, always with a mind on the eventual target segment – elderly customers who may be wary of said technology, may be reluctant to address the issues involved, may be difficult to target with mainstream marketing channels.
- Revenue Model
Once again, many options here meant that work had to be carried out to determine how best to price the product. Some options included one off fee versus subscription with tiered payments.
- Technological Requirements
Reassurance was a key element of this product’s value propositions. A reluctance to trust an online storage solution was identified as a potential barrier to uptake and the company worked hard to secure the most reputable data storage partners to bring an authority to the brand. A balance between the ‘softer’ elements of the product and the core strength of the technology underpinning these value propositions was implied in messaging and partner choice.
- SWOT Analysis
Toward the end of the project a SWOT analysis identified gaps and opportunities in the marketplace as well as internal strengths and weaknesses which required work before the launch of the product.
By the end of the project the company was happy with the balance struck between the production of a commercial product, since launched, and the delivery of a technologically secure service that can provide people with ‘peace of mind’ that their affairs are in order for future generations.
Peter Fearon, Group CEO:
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We found the team at RIKON well versed in asking the pertinent questions to really force us to streamline our business model. The workshop engagements in WIT were invaluable in keeping us focused on the core offerings of the product and how these matched with our intended audience. I would recommend the process to anyone interested in testing their business model, whether in a new venture or existing product or service