How have we redefined the go-to-market strategy of $40M logistics player, Apaczka, through segmentation research?

by 

Maciej Wilczyński

 in 

Research Case Studies

December 28, 2021

Redesign of the whole go-to-market strategy based on potential clients' feedback.

How have we redefined the go-to-market strategy of $40M logistics player, Apaczka, through segmentation research?

Client: Apaczka isa company providing logistic services primarily to e-commerce SMB clients, and it’s one of the leaders in this market segment. Our client helps ensure thousands of consumers choosing e-commerce get what they order while caring about the overall experience. It plays a necessary role in the value chain of numerous companies, so changing the model needed 

Client’s opinion: Marcin Susmanek, COO: “Pragmatic approach & statistics. We follow these two principles, and Valueships handles them both exceptionally well. They had good referrals before we hired them, so we moved forward. They have delivered a robust quantitative and qualitative pricing research input, staffed data analysts on the project, worked thoroughly with our internal data and even remained flexible and agile enough to re-scope the project to better match the changing business context. The deliverables, knowledge, and recommendations were useful, impactful, and always prepared before the meetings. They've also ensured we communicated the strategy across the whole organization through workshops & meetings. One of the best experts team on the market.”

Situation: Apaczka was planning to question the logistics industry's status quo by focusing on the development and commercialization of SaaS products. The Client already had two products up and running; however, the revenue generated was not satisfying, compromising ROI. There were several SaaS products in the pipeline, but the team of Apaczka had serious challenges around final features’ packaging, the optimal value metrics, and ultimately the price point. Our role was to develop a go-to-market strategy, including the pricing for SaaS products. 

Approach: First, we applied revenue engine diagnostic to ensure a granular understanding of the client’s business economics. Simultaneously, we ran thorough desk research to get the complete picture of the logistics SaaS products market, eventually letting us figure out how our client compared to the remaining players. We were also hunting for market trends that would enable us to make sound predictions that we could further implement into our final recommendations.

Afterward, we run a bunch of individual in-depth interviews (IDI) and Focus Groups in cooperation with our research partners from one of the most prestigious universities in Poland. We identified the target group, which we divided into three categories. Our first objective was to determine if a given SaaS functionality was attractive enough for the customers to pay for it. Such action allowed us to understand the overall sentiment for each functionality our client had to offer. We identified which functionalities were perceived as table stakes and differentiators by the customers.

As a continuation of IDI, we decided to run a few Gemba Walks - we visited the actual warehouses of clients' potential customers. This approach allowed for a deeper understanding of the final customer’s everyday challenges, fears, and priorities to tailor communication against shortlisted SaaS products. Consequently, we could judge if the functionalities offered by our client were reflecting customers’ needs. 

Lastly, we run a CAWI research with 600 participants to set the prices for the client’s SaaS products. For that purpose, we used the Van Westendorp pricing tool to uncover optimal price ranges. CAWI also helped us precisely understand the preferred subscription models and how different customer cohorts diverged in their willingness to pay for various functionalities. 

Results: We redesigned the whole go-to-market strategy envisioned by Apaczka. It turned out that instead of dividing functionalities into ~ ten products, e-commerce customers prefer a couple of more comprehensive solutions tailored to specific use-cases that we discovered (the optimal number of products was 50% smaller than planned by the client while keeping all the functionalities that were already designed). Based on quantitative and qualitative insights, we proposed SaaS packaging and calculated the willingness to pay per product taking into account different growth scenarios (e.g., revenue-maximizing or market penetration). This ultimately led to recommendations around final pricing as well as discounting policy.

Thanks to great collaboration and granularity of insights, we were asked by the Board to prepare a sales narrative that would be in line with the research findings (which was initially out of scope). We devised a value-selling communication tailored to of client's target groupset.  We also helped the sales leadership and sales representatives implement our insights by organizing a series of dedicated workshops.  

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