Key Questions

  • Are you positioned in the most profitable and highest growth market segments?
  • What value shifts have occurred in your industry and what does this mean for your business?
  • What differentiated products and services do your target customers value?
  • What do you need to do differently to win in high potential segments?


Our client was a major player in the domestic steel market and like most companies in asset-intensive industries, was biased towards a product-out strategy given the need to maintain low costs and drive margins.


However, new leadership was interested in breaking this paradigm and tasked the business units with identifying high margin opportunities in the market where they could provide innovative products and differentiated services. 

Key Learnings

A New Perspective in an Old Industry:  The market wants more than a product

We learned quickly that certain customer segments needed more than standard product offerings. For example, automotive OEMs were most concerned with achieving weight savings to meet rapidly evolving fuel economy regulations. Our client could take advantage of this shift in the marketplace by developing advanced steel grades that provide comparable strength at a lower weight. However, automakers were still switching from steel to aluminum. Why was this the case?


We discovered that for any new model, the material selection decision occurred far before the actual purchase in the design phase; our client however, had limited sales focus in this phase. We worked with our client to develop a technical sales capability that could win in the design phase, aligning sales, marketing and innovation resources. This allowed them to increase their win-rate on high-value parts for new models, shifting the mix towards higher margin differentiated products.


A Market-In Approach

  1. Start by scanning the market for pockets of growth and profitability, assessing opportunities vs. current strategic knowledge and priorities 
  2. Dive deep into these high potential segments to understand how customers buy your product, why they buy your product, and what they really want from their suppliers
  3. Finally, with opportunities identified, develop new concepts for how to penetrate these markets through differentiated product and service offerings

Have you lost touch with your customer?

Treacy & Company can help you quickly build the evidence to shift your market focus to high growth and margin segments to achieve accretive results.

Our understanding of customer perspectives allows us to guide clients towards opportunities which significantly impact both the top and bottom line.

Our 6-week Market Insights analysis provides:

  • A segmented view of market growth, revenue, and margin potential
  • A clear understanding of what customers need
  • A path to meaningful product and service differentiation and innovation

Learn More from our Experts:

James Potter,    Partner

James Potter,  Partner

Xiaohang Liu , Engagement Leader

Xiaohang Liu, Engagement Leader