GrowthToon™: Build Next Generation Platforms

by Wayne Simmons and Keary Crawford

Next Generation Platforms can set the foundation for highly scalable business growth. A well-executed platform strategy can drive lower costs, faster ramp-up and multiple opportunities for network and scaling effects. The customer’s willingness to pay more for access to a bigger network allows for growth in margins and users. By marrying the power, agility, innovation, and cost structures of platforms, companies can identify new markets, reduce time-to-revenue and enable growth. Explore these strategic platform features:

Double-Sided Platforms—In the digital world, products and services that bring users together in two-sided networks can bring economies of scale on both the demand and cost sides of the platform.

Product Platforms—Create families of products, services, and businesses to build capabilities into multiple new domains and an entirely new ecosystem.

Freemium Platforms —By providing your offering free, you can “up-sell” at a premium for advanced features, functionality, or related products and services.

Consider the following questions when building Next Generation Platforms:

  • Can you create a platform where you charge an interaction or usage fee to users on both sides of the platform?
  • How can you subsidize one user while charging the other a premium for access to the subsidized group?
  • How can you generate cross-platform network effects between your service providers and customers?
  • What is your main product platform (technological, process, service)?
  • Can you provide a “lite” or “feature” version of your offering for free?
  • Can you provide account packages or capacity-limited offerings?

image credit: growthstrategy.com

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    Growth Thinking - Emerging Markets and GPIWayne Simmons is an accomplished executive, innovator, value creator, and entrepreneur and co-author of GrowthThinking: Building the New Growth Enterprise. As CEO and Co-Founder of The Growth Strategy Company, Wayne leads the vision, strategy and growth of the company. He has worked for global advisory firms Ernst & Young, Deloitte Consulting, and has been a trusted advisor to C-level executives at Fortune 500 corporations, venture capital firms, and small and midsized companies. Wayne was trained in airborne reconnaissance for US Army Intelligence; and is an alumnus and Fellow of The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. Growth Thinking - Emerging Markets and GPIKeary Crawford is a results-driven executive leader with extensive experience in operations, M&A and finance for start-up, entrepreneurial and middle-market companies. As co-founder and COO of The Growth Strategy Company, she manages the strategic growth and vision, and day-to-day operations; and is co-author of GrowthThinking: Building the New Growth Enterprise. Keary was trained in Behavioral and Social Sciences and is a Fellow and alumna of the Executive Development Program at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.