Eastman Chemical Company chose “The results of insight™” as a tagline to summarize and capture their focus on marrying innovation and solutions that work. They are referring to their deep insight into chemical and industrial processes, and into the many diverse markets they serve. For a large chemical company, Eastman has a very sophisticated approach to marketing, and they understand that B2B marketing is primarily about developing deep knowledge of your customer’s business model in order to add value. One recent challenge in evaluating how value is added was with a new-generation material, Eastman Tritan™ copolyester, that offers a compelling alternative to traditional clear polymers, including polycarbonate. Eastman used the full range of the Monitor Group marketing tools covered in LeveragePoint for Marketing Strategy in uncovering the marketing opportunity for Tritan™, and used Economic Value Estimation™ or EVE® to understand how to create and communicate value.
The project that led to Tritan™ began in 2004. One of Eastman’s early hypotheses was that there was a strong market need in the housewares industry for a clear, tough plastic with good dishwasher durability. However, the low heat resistance of heritage copolyesters had limited Eastman’s penetration into dishwasher safe applications. Eastman Tritan™ copolyester provided an opportunity to engage this market space with a new material. Success depended on understanding and capturing the differentiated value that would be provided to all key participants in the value system including the end consumer.
Initial market research found unmet needs where Eastman could provide differentiated value. Manufacturers in areas such as commercial and consumer housewares and sports bottles were looking for improved dishwasher durability, lower mold-in stress, more design freedom, a BPA-free (Bisphenol A) material and lower system costs. All of these are potential value drivers. Understanding where value could be created for customers informed the product development process and market activation plan. The end result was Tritan™, a new-generation polymer now being used in many new applications and markets, opening major new business opportunities for Eastman. Tritan™ is also beneficial to consumers in that it is an excellent alternative to existing clear materials that contain BPA, thus winning respect from health conscious consumers.
As Eastman prepared to take Eastman Tritan™ copolyester to market, they built a series of EVEs to help them understand the differentiated value they were providing and to communicate this to potential customers across many market segments and many end-use applications. Presented in LeveragePoint for Value Management, an example EVE for Tritan™ is shown in Figure 1 (Eastman conducted this project before theLeveragePoint for Value Management application was ready so their EVE’s have been crafted by hand).
This is just one of many EVEs for Tritan™, as each customer and application has its own value drivers and variables the differentiated value can differ in each case. Importantly, Eastman has been able to develop, demonstrate and capture differentiated value through the effective use of EVEs within product development, in value communication and as a sales tool.
Former CEO, LeveragePoint Innovations Inc.