Jun 22, 2015
“If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.”—Henry Ford
Of course, this quote has also been used by entrepreneurs as an excuse for ignoring market reality. (It’s a GREAT idea!” Everyone SHOULD love it! Who needs a business plan? Or a market analysis? We HAVE no competition! LET’s GO!”)
And, I’m all for wild ideas and out-of-the-box thinking. Once upon a time, I’m sure the general consensus was that newfangled fire thing would never catch on…and what’s with that big round gizmo that rolls? Who needs that?
However, whatever the idea—wild or otherwise—when all is said and done, someone has to buy it. And buy more than one.
And what if your customers are perfectly happy with their “horses” and, yes, are saying they will pay you for faster ones?
So, whenever you look at potential new markets, keep those horses in mind. (And don’t leave your customers behind.)
P.S. It should be noted that it took a long time for the internal combustion engine to replace horses. As recently as WWii, horses were the primary transportation method for artillery.
Related posts from the archives:
Avoid Customer Focus Myopia
Are You (Really) Developing a Product?
Competitive Suicide: We’ll Just Introduce A New Product!
Strategy Blind Spots
Innovation Ain’t Always Pretty.
“I’ve Got A Great Product. Now I Need Some Marketing.”
The BIG Marketing Secret!!
The Not-So-Secret Reasons Secret Failed
Mind Share Before Market Share
Bridging the Gap Between Product and Customers
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