The nine building blocks are:
- Customer Segments;
The Customer Segments Building Block deï¬nes the different groups of people or organizations an enterprise aims to reach and serve. Customers comprise the heart of any business model. Without (profitable) customers, no company can survive for long. In order to better satisfy customers, a company may group them into distinct segments with common needs, common behaviours, or other attributes. A business model may define one or several large or small Customer Segments. An organization must make a conscious decision about which segments to serve and which segments to ignore. Once this decision is made, a business model can be carefully designed around a strong understanding of specific customer needs. Customer groups represent separate segments if:
• Their needs require and justify a distinct offer
• They are reached through different Distribution Channels
• They require different types of relationships
• They have substantially different prof tabilities
• They are willing to pay for different aspects of the offer
- Value Proposition;
The Value Propositions Building Block describes the bundle of products and services that create value for a speciï¬c Customer Segment The Value Proposition is the reason why customers turn to one company over another. It solves a customer problem or satisfies a customer need. Each Value Proposition consists of a selected bundle of products and/or services that caters to the requirements of a specif c Customer Segment. In this sense, the Value Proposition is an aggregation, or bundle, of benefits that a company
offers customers. Some Value Propositions may be innovative and represent a
new or disruptive offer. Others may be similar to existing market offers, but with added features and attributes.
The Channels Building Block describes how a company communicates with and reaches its Customer Segments to deliver a Value Proposition. Communication, distribution, and sales Channels comprise a company’s interface with customers. Channels are customer touch points that play an important role in the customer experience. Channels serve several functions, including:
• Raising awareness among customers about a company’s products and services
• Helping customers evaluate a company’s Value Proposition
• Allowing customers to purchase specific products and services
• Delivering a Value Proposition to customers
• Providing post-purchase customer support
- Customer Relationships;
The Customer Relationships Building Block describes the types of relationships a company establishes with specieï¬c Customer Segments. A company should clarify the type of relationship it wants to establish with each Customer Segment. Relationships can range from personal to automated. Customer relationships may be driven by the following motivations:
• Customer acquisition
• Customer retention
• Boosting sales (up selling)
In the early days, for example, mobile network operator Customer Relationships were driven by aggressive acquisition strategies involving free mobile phones. When the market became saturated, operators switched to focusing on customer retention and increasing average revenue per customer.
The Customer Relationships called for by a company’s business model deeply inï¬‚uence the overall customer experience.
- Revenue Streams;
The Revenue Streams Building Block represents the cash a company generates from each Customer Segment (costs must be subtracted from revenues to
create earnings). If customers comprise the heart of a business model, Revenue Streams are its arteries. A company must ask itself, For what value
is each Customer Segment truly willing to pay? Successfully answering that question allows the firm to generate one or more Revenue Streams from each Customer Segment. Each Revenue Stream may have different pricing mechanisms, such as fixed list prices, bargaining, auctioning, market dependent, volume dependent, or yield management. A business model can involve two different types of Revenue Streams:
1. Transaction revenues resulting from one-time customer payments
2. Recurring revenues resulting from ongoing payments to either deliver a Value Proposition to customers or provide post-purchase customer support
- Key resources;
The Key Resources Building Block describes the most important assets required to make a business model work. Every business model requires Key Resources. These resources allow an enterprise to create and offer a Value Proposition, reach markets, maintain relationships with Customer Segments, and
earn revenues. Different Key Resources are needed depending on the type of business model. A microchip manufacturer requires capital-intensive production facilities, whereas a microchip designer focuses more on human resources. Key resources can be physical, financial, intellectual, or human. Key resources can be owned or leased by the company or acquired from key partners.
- Key Activities;
The Key Activities Building Block describes the most important things a company must do to make its business model work. Every business model calls for a number of Key Activities. These are the most important actions a company must take to operate successfully. Like Key Resources, they are required to create and offer a Value Proposition, reach markets, maintain Customer Relationships, and earn revenues. And like Key Resources, Key
Activities differ depending on business model type. For software maker Microsoft, Key Activities include software development. For PC manufacturer Dell, Key Activities include supply chain management. For consultancy McKinsey, Key Activities include problem solving.
- Key Partnership;
The Key Partnerships Building Block describes the network of suppliers and partners that make the business model work. Companies forge partnerships for many reasons, and partnerships are becoming a cornerstone of many business models. Companies create alliances to optimize their business models, reduce risk, or acquire resources. We can distinguish between four different types of partnerships:
1. Strategic alliances between non-competitors
2. Coopetition: strategic partnerships between competitors
3. Joint ventures to develop new businesses
4. Buyer-supplier relationships to assure reliable supplies
- Cost Structure;
The Cost Structure describes all costs incurred to operate a business model
This building block describes the most important costs incurred while operating under a particular business model. Creating and delivering value, maintaining Customer Relationships, and generating revenue all incur costs. Such costs can be calculated relatively easily after defining Key Resources, Key Activities, and Key Partnerships. Some business models, though, are more cost-driven than others. So-called “no frills” airlines, for instance, have built business models entirely around low Cost Structures.