The Trouble With Clean Innovation And Getting Into A Marketplace Late
Markets are always universal in how they are accessed. You can either be part of a market, or you can dominate it. The issue becomes whether you can recognize a market before it is cornered and dominated, therefore buying in before establishment of the supreme share is taken.
I have this conversation a lot with vendors when talking sponsorship investment in advertising, especially those seeking advice on how to spend money. Several vendors like to do an escalator (i.e. the safe route). Go from the bottom level of sponsorship support to the medium to the largest amount. That’s the easy route, and it often pays the least in dividends.
When a new market becomes available, the key is to grab onto it with both hands, and buy-in at the top level.
Specifically, because no pecking order has been established yet. That means that a dominant group in every other marketplace hasn’t cornered this one, and if you can get there before a competitor and dominate, you end up ruling.
This isn’t always an easy argument for marketplace vendors, who see what they have in a budget and try to splash everywhere. That’s where most marketplace vendors tend to fail, since they are attempting to make a splash everywhere. Consider how many wasted efforts are performed trying to be all things to all people. You cannot do it effectively, and in reality, why make that attempt at all?
Vendors performing their sponsorship seek numbers, to establish themselves after the market has already been formed and built. And that’s an issue in itself, as it almost creates a belief in the process of “clean innovation.”
Clean innovation is a myth. Nothing is clean. Nothing is absolutely respected when it comes online for the first time. In fact, most of the first editions of a product are often the worst, as they have to establish some type of new features to improve over time. Yet, those that come to market first are often able to dominate, or set the tone of the rest of the products that come after, especially by competitors.
No matter how great a Galaxy tablet is, there is only one IPad. Same with an Android phone. Unfortunately, IPhone was released first.
That’s the thing the about clean innovation, or the idea of waiting to see if something is already able to trend. By doing so, there is a lose of opportunity, and in the end, those that buy in last often do not see the results of those who buy in first at the highest level. Go big or go home.