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When you hear the word ecosystem, what's the first thing that comes to mind? Ecosystems work in a particular way, wherein the biotic and abiotic components of any particular ecosystem work together to survive. Product ecosystems are not so different! A company creates a product ecosystem when they have several products that coexist to benefit the customer. Apple is an excellent example of a company that's made a thriving product ecosystem, with its synchronized phones, tablets, laptops, televisions, and even headphones. But how is a thriving product ecosystem built? Below, we have a few pointers for any companies that are attempting to establish their product ecosystem. 

Building a Thriving Product Ecosystem

 

Listen to your customers

The first step with anything concerning your customers is listening, but it's especially true for building product ecosystems. The only way to have a genuinely beneficial product ecosystem is to provide products and services that solve the challenges and pain points that your target audience is facing. Invest the time into listening to what your customers need. Are there any blind spots in your product lineup? Is there a feature that doesn't work the way it should? Are your products optimizing the customer experience? These are all questions that the customer will be able to answer. 

 Simplify the connections within your product ecosystems

Next, you need to be sure that your ecosystem works. Product integration and connection should be as simple as possible. The more straightforward this process is, the more value your ecosystem provides. Consider the previous example of Apple's product ecosystem: under your specific account, each piece of technology that you buy pairs with everything you already own. So, if you have a phone, you can pair that with a new MacBook, iPad, AirPods, or any other piece of Apple technology. People invest in Apple products because they work, not only individually, but as a greater whole. If you are looking to build a product ecosystem, make sure your technology can integrate seamlessly. 

Consistently update and improve your product ecosystem

Once you've built your product ecosystem, you begin the work of maintaining and updating what you've created. Essentially, you never stop listening to customer feedback. Improving the product ecosystem will enhance the customer experience. As your products expand and evolve, continue to work on how your ecosystem operates and how functional each piece of technology is. 

Make joining your ecosystem valuable for customers

If your product ecosystem is set up correctly, there's no reason that you can't achieve this last step. But for sales purposes, you will still want the world to know how great your product ecosystem is and all of the great things it can do for your customers. If your product ecosystem has nothing to offer anyone, there's simply no reason for it to exist. Give it purpose and make it a "must-have" for everyone in your target audience. Any product or service that can immediately address and resolve the problems that your customers face will have inherent value. 

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The Marketing Eye Atlanta team has a combined 35+ years experience in marketing and communications. Marketing Eye Atlanta is well-known for high performance, technology-driven marketing campaigns that deliver results. The team members are experts in all facets of the marketing mix including strategy development, content marketing, branding, website development, public relations, social media, digital marketing, SEO, lead generation, direct marketing, etc.

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