Taking your market for granted (or how to fail slowly in business)

Ever wondered why different companies do different things? It’s not just because they perceive different opportunities, though this is likely to be the case. It’s mainly because different companies are able to excel at different things.

So, the fact that there is a market out there for something that you want to do is great. But it is no guarantee of success. That market may choose to buy from others.

Also, the fact that you have a market today does not mean you will necessarily have one tomorrow.

This is why ‘innovation’ is such a complicated thing. Having a great product unfortunately isn’t enough. There are many examples of technically excellent products that are no more.

Innovation is something that is self-evidently useful and crucial for all businesses (a subject I will return to in future posts). But it is possible to innovate for the wrong reasons. Knowing what the reasons are and how the innovation fits with your existing business (if at all) is really important.

Some things will finish a business quickly. Taking your market for granted will finish it slowly, as the gap between the company and its market is gradually exploited by others.

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