Matt Merrifield – GIS Manager, The Nature Conservancy
“We had developed a simple web and mobile application to collect harvest information from the Conservancy’s industry partners. The application had a small set of users but we thought the concept was novel. Our expertise is in conservation science and planning and as such we did not have a good method for evaluating opportunities and defining market strategy. We hired LeanCog to help. LeanCog brought experience and a rigorous, proven methodology to help us do a comprehensive and creative evaluation. They provided a level of critical thinking that was invaluable in evaluating our own assumptions and keenly identified how our core strengths could be leveraged. We’re extremely pleased with the results which have brought focus to our effort that’s exciting.”
The Nature Conservancy is a global non-profit whose mission is to conserve the lands and waters on which all life depends. In one of their projects, the Conservancy had a need to independently collect data to ensure the resource was being managed in accordance with the terms of their partnerships. Unfortunately, there were no good off-the-shelf solutions to do this – so they made their own. A clever, intuitive, and user-friendly application that provided actionable insights that led to an order of magnitude improvement in conservation management. With that kind of result, the obvious question was: how to leverage that success where the Conservancy may not have as much influence?
This is where The Nature Conservancy looked for help from a partner. While solving data problems with technology is something the Conservancy does every day, developing these solutions for the market is not. They selected LeanCog because of their focus and experience on addressing “product-market fit” using strategic and lean start-up methodologies. LeanCog “got out of the building” (as Steve Blank would say) and interviewed prospective customers, partners, competitors and regulators to identify user segments based on shared pains. We took an hard look at what the Conservancy did well compared to other organizations and helped them identify strengths to define a differentiated offering. By determining the intersection of the Conservancy’s expertise the pains of the market, and the unique feature of the application, LeanCog was able to help TNC pivot their technology strategy to solve a much bigger problem than that previously considered.
I never imagined when we started this that we would end up here!
“I never imagined when we started this that we would end up here!” – George Yandall, Director of Real Estate The Nature Conservancy
The Nature Conservancy is continuing on their Customer Development roadmap with LeanCog by implementing several pilots to collect feedback.