The Whole Product Game

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The Whole Product Game was inspired by Ted Levitt’s “Whole Product Strategy,” which categorizes products based on customer expectations in order to help companies differentiate their products. Use this online game to discover opportunities to attract and keep customers.

Timing: 1 hour

Ingredients:

  • Online access

Players (5..8 recommended):

  • Product Manager / Product Owner
  • Development Team or Customers

Directions:


The goal of this game is to discover effective ways to differentiate your product from the competition. Clicking on this image will take you to an “instant game” at innovations.com. You will see this image used as the “game board” and an icon of light bulbs in the upper left corner symbolizing ideas. To add an idea to the board, simply drag it to a region and describe it.

As facilitator, invite customers or your own internal staff, taking the perspective of the customers, to play the game. Players drag the light bulbs to one of the four regions of the game board. The regions represent:

  • Generic Product – the fundamental “thing” that you are marketing
  • Expected Product – the minimal conditions customers expect from your product
  • Augmented Product – aspects of your product that go beyond customer expectations
  • Potential Product – what could be done to your product to attract and keep customers

Players can edit the placement and description of each light bulb, which can be viewed in real time. Use the integrated chat facility to communicate with your players throughout the game to understand the reasoning behind each move.

Key Points:

  • This productive game involves visual organization and critical thinking to gain insight on what can be done to make your product stand out from the competition. Expand your point of view by playing The Whole Product Game to understand what your customers truly want from your product.
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