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Secret Sauce

A company’s “secret sauce” is a metaphor for what makes a business unique. It could be a new method of doing things, a special way the company treats its customers or a clever idea. A great secret sauce must fit three categories: Firstly, it should deliver specific benefits to a target audience. Secondly, it must demonstrate that the company has mastery of a market. And thirdly, it should describe what only that business can offer. A start-up might not even know its special sauce until a few quarters into its journey as is settles on the right market audience. But if a founder doesn’t eventually learn which factors are responsible for the company’s traction, they may sabotage their own success when they alter their products and processes. In the context of intangible assets, secret sauce is the specialised knowledge, expertise, processes or trade secrets that contribute to a firm’s success but are not easily replicated or imitated. Businesses work hard to protect their secret sauce with legal protections or by keeping their special methods and ideas hidden.