The starting situation
In 2017, WITTE Digital launched their retrofit solution for digitising car access, originally known by the name of WAVE. The product was initially designed for the B2B market. Occasional conversations and interviews with customers though showed that there was interest also in a B2C version.
Based on the initial market feedback, WITTE started a project with the aim to build an MVP and test its market acceptance among potential end customers. It is for that reason the company engaged with Wyte to validate the product close to the market, while maintaining the demanding flexibility of a startup-like approach.
Our mission was to set-up an MVP that would allow us to make a reliable statement about the market potential and user adoption rate of flinkey in the B2C domain within six months.
Revision of branding
In a first step, we wanted to better understand the market and how customers would actually perceive and use the product. The idea was to get an unbiased and spontaneous opinion. So, we defined a set of personas and conducted several interviews from our 75,000+ pool of test customers to verify our hypotheses.
One of the findings was that we needed to rethink the branding as the product was perceived rather plain. We thereupon modified the name and logo of the product, and shifted towards a more end-user friendly look and feel.
We also revised and redesigned the website, as well as the iOS and Android app. Subsequently, we reached out to potential B2C and existing B2B customers again to validate the effect of the changes.
Working with WYTE put us in the position of the customer. We redesigned some of our assumptions for a product all of us fell in love with for its simplicity and ease of use.
Paul Meier, Director WITTE Digital
Following a tested product understanding, we were able to specify and work out potential use cases and benefits for identified target groups. This was necessary to develop, test, and eventually deploy different pricing models as part of establishing a sustainable business model for the company.
At the same time we were able to attract our first pilot clients, who helped us revalidate the idea and our modifications in a more profound manner. It turned out that opening and closing a car via an app alone would not be sufficient to adopt the product. We therefore developed the concept of an open mobility marketplace that would allow third-parties to provide services around the access to a car. After initial discussions, flinkey soon entered into relationships with an on demand cleaning as well as towing service.
Dedicated marketing plan
Following a soft launch, we developed a comprehensive digital strategy going along with a dedicated marketing plan. Within the next few weeks we created several videos, images and partner posts to spread the message. All our initiatives and on-site interactions were constantly measured and evaluated based on defined KPIs.
To issue a qualified recommendation, we needed to determine the potential and implied risks of entering the B2C market with flinkey. Our strategy, therefore, was to maintain maximum flexibility in order to quickly identify weaknesses and adapt to demands while investing as little time and money as possible. Our main measurand was the quality of reliable customer feedback we collected throughout the process. With different variables such as pricing, product features, and sales messages we tested the impact on actual orders.
Within only six months we found out that end customers were generally open to the product as well as services, but could not overcome their concerns of sharing a valuable asset like a car (yet), especially when it comes to distant family and friends, yet alone strangers.
This led to the understanding that WITTE should continue focusing on the B2B market with a refined offering while preparing for a potential B2C relaunch when the market is ready and the sharing economy more mature. Most of the adaptations of the product, however, turned out to be valid and appreciated also in the B2B domain.
With the investment of a six-month MVP, we helped WITTE Digital to focus on their core business while quickly testing a potential business opportunity.
The team convinced us with their creativity and result-driven style of working. WYTE‘s interdisciplinary approach bringing together designers, hackers, and business experts may not be new, but you usually do not get to this level of authenticity.
Paul Meier, Director WITTE Digital
WITTE Digital is the digital division of WITTE Automotive GmbH, a leading automotive supplier with headquarters in Velbert, Germany. The company is a specialist in locking, latching, and security systems for vehicles since 1899. WITTE Digital is committed to developing innovative, digital solutions for the mobility of tomorrow.
Wyte is a collective of entrepreneurs unlocking innovation at corporates. We call this startup-as-a-service. Together, we make innovations happen in both digital and technical domains. We follow an approach related to human-centric design to create products and services that work. We also develop our own products, just like a start-up.