November 29, 2023

Revenue Growth at Autobooks, Powered by Jobs Theory

This is a story about Chris Spiek, CPO at Autobooks used Jobs Theory to create a feature that now accounts for 50% of their revenue.

The success of a business lies in the ability to understand the desires of its customers and provide them with products and services that help them make progress on those desires. Understanding customer needs takes a willingness to untangle what can feel like a spaghetti mess of paths and decisions. Anybody who has talked to me knows I am partial to Jobs Theory, as I think it hews closest to the truth of how and why humans make decisions to pull solutions into their lives.

In a recent episode of the Experience Leader podcast, Chris Spiek, Chief Product Officer at Autobooks and co-founder of the Rewired Group, joined me to discuss the power of Jobs Theory in directing product strategy in a customer-centric way. Because Jobs Theory focuses on understanding the causal factors behind a person choosing to use a product or service and the context in which they made that choice, it has the ability to move you away from feature-focused product management and marketing to customer intent-focused product and marketing strategies. By understanding the jobs that customers are trying to get done, companies can create products and services with the customer’s end goals in mind, which creates a better experience, which earns you more business—and that’s exactly how it went for Chris and his team.

Getting a Win

Chris shifted Autobooks from listening to the loudest voice in the room to making the customer the center of the conversation. That’s not to say this is easy. Anyone who has worked on a team trying to launch anything can tell you that. But that’s why Chris emphasized the importance of getting that first win. All it takes is one win to prove to the organization that putting the customer at the center of product development is the path to growth.

Speaking of wins from applying Jobs Theory, one of the key insights that Autobooks gained from their customer interviews was the importance of giving small business owners a way to get paid without having to create an invoice. 

Enter The Payment Link

Chris and the product team took this insight and created a simple feature payment links for small businesses. By stripping away unnecessary functionality from their invoicing solution and focusing on the specific job of getting paid, Autobooks was able to significantly improve their product and they now generate over 50% of their revenue from payment links. You read that right. One insight from using Jobs Theory to put the customer at the center of Autobooks’ product direction resulted in a grand slam for revenue. I’m going to go out on a limb and say nobody’s questioning whether customer-centric product strategy works over at Autobooks at this point.

It’s Your Turn

The great thing about this story is that you can make your own story at your company. It just takes the willingness to put the customer’s desires at the center of your strategy. Learn what those desires are by asking the right questions. After that, you and your team know what to do: move heaven and earth to help the customer make progress on those desires. Get that one win, take it to the bank, and the rest will be history.

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