Crossing bridges

There’s a reason that most marketers advise us to sell things to people who are already buying: getting something important into the hands of people who have never had it – and doing it in a way that makes a sustainable difference – is difficult. An incremental improvement on a single axis is unlikely to be enough: You’ll need to…

Overcoming barriers

With this in mind… How does what you offer reduce the barriers to people consuming something important to them? In other words, how do you make it easier (or even possible) for them to get the job done? How do you (dramatically) lower the price? How do you make it available in places where it hasn’t been before? How do…

Efosa Ojomo on market-creating innovation and overcoming barriers to consumption

This is a powerful lens for thinking about how to unlock possibilities and bring about change, drawing on the work of Clayton Christensen. Market creating innovations are innovations that transform complicated and expensive products into products that are simple and affordable so many more people can afford them. Those people who historically could not afford existing products on the market…

McDonald’s miracles and me

McDonald’s gets a lot of stick, much of it deserved. But critics of McDonald’s are often blind to the value it adds – in large part because we never knew (or have forgotten) the context it emerged in. In the pre-McDonald’s era, I suspect more so than now, the quality of food and service available in local restaurants across small-town…

César Hidalgo on the importance of trust in networks of innovation

Another great episode of Exponential View – recommend. Azeem Azhar: It seems like the richer, faster growing economies require these dense and intricate networks of people, and these people need to have ways of communicating with each other, norms, behaviours that ultimately get reflected – measured – as trust. … César Hidalgo: Trust is fundamental for economic growth, because it…

Astro Teller on planning, experimentation and innovation

This extract is from another great interview on Exponential View with Azeem Azhar. Depending on how you count, [at Google X] maybe 1000 ideas turned into ten ideas. … I would put it this way, with respect to how we think about X: if you’re serious about innovation, you would be lucky to succeed one percent of the time. You…

Tom Peters on the “services added” narrative

“It helps to be as helpful as you can be” Rolls-Royce now earns MORE from tasks such as managing clients’ overall procurement strategies and maintaining aerospace engines it sells than it does from making them. Thus the quintessential lumpy object producer, akin to yesteryear’s IBM, principally becomes a services-added company that also happens to make lumpy objects. … Twenty years…

Amazon: working backwards and other stories

I’m late to the party on this, but I’ve just come across this very helpful technique for developing products and services, as used at Amazon. Essentially, you start by immediately writing a customer-facing press release for the finished product, and work backwards from there: Each consists of a one-page “press release” (for an offering that doesn’t even exist and might…

Clayton Christensen: Jobs to be done (1)

Here’s a great insight from Clayton Christensen: people don’t buy a product or service because of abstract needs, but rather when they have a specific job to do. So people don’t use public transport, or cars, or taxis because they need transportation in general, but when they need to go and do something specific at a specific time. All people…

Resources: Steve Blank Playlist

If you’re not familiar with Steve Blank, start here: The Principles of Lean “No business plan survives first contact with customers.” On Acting on Customer Discovery If you’re going to go out and discover whether customers like your idea or not, this is not an outsourceable problem. The founders need to do this. Particularly, the people capable of changing strategy…