Differentiation, must-have to survive and grow

Today I want to tell you the subject ‘What to differentiate’. Differentiation is the unavoidable headache that every planners encounter on their daily life.  What do think with which point Nespresso, Starbucks, Dongseo Power Coffee and EDIYA are differentiated?  After your read this article, you can identify the exact CPSE point to find differentiation point in most products and services around you.

CPSE viewpoint to boost differentiation

To begin with, What is the CPSE? It is the acronym of Customer-Problem-Solution-Empathy. Those are the zones where differentiation  blooms. For example I will explain CPSE view with coffee business cases.

First, customer differentiation.

We can differentiate by conquering people mostly who were not our customers for a long time. When Nestle invented instant capsule coffee machine Nespresso, they tried to sell them as a B2B products. B2B customers are un-cultivated at that time. So if Nestle could hit the market, it would have been a good way to enter the new market.

Second, problem differentiation.

We can differentiate by discovering new customer problem, needs and wants. Many market insights comes from knowing what customers want exactly. For example, Starbucks concentrated on what the meaning of cafe space to its users. Cafe can be a social solution to who want the space not belonging to office nor home. They found a new customer problem, and it is a big part of differentiation.


Third, solution differentiation.

We can differentiate by leverage solution itself with price, function, quality. You have to carefully compare between better and different at this point. Mostly new brilliant approach is needed to be different enough with price, function and quality. For example, Dongseo Foods invented powder coffee that is widely accepted today. Frozen coffee powders makes the difference of lowering the price, saving the time and storing easily plus longer all at once.


Fourth, empathy differentiation.

It is about giving customers reason to buy and handling perception. EDIYA is a cafe brand that have more than 1500 franchisees and high margin structure. It used unique approach called ‘Sub Street’ strategy. Which means that EDIYA opens its cafes nearby starbucks. That’s because Starbucks is usually very crowded in lunch time. EDIYA make customers from Starbucks who can not find their seats in there.  EDIYA coffee is very cheap and usually offered as a take-out one.



Now you can identify differentiation with CPSE viewpoint. In fact CPSE is linked each other. Customer has a Problem. Problem needs Solution. Solution can be sold by Empathy. So you have to consider all the elements. Differentiation comes from your focus on specific element.

Let me give you one last question. You might know Paik’s Coffee made by famous business person and casual chef  Paik Jongwon in South Korea.


Please guess what differentiated Paik’s Coffe among CPSE – Customer, Problem, Solution and Empathy. I will give you the answer later on below comment line.