Be 2nd to the Market and Deliver the Wow

Be 2nd to the Market and Deliver the Wow

Since I’m moving, I’ve been scanning my old photos and letters, taking pictures of old sentimental items, and organizing my digital/real life. I’m really glad that a service like Dropbox exists. What would I have done four years ago when Dropbox didn’t exist? Oh wait… I would have used iDrive and I did. Why did I stop using Dropbox and move to iDrive? I don’t really remember the specifics. But, I do remember at the time while I was using iDrive it costs \$10 for 10 GB/month. It didn’t work on Linux and it didn’t have the autosync feature that Dropbox has. I remember when I first used Dropbox, it almost felt like magic. There was a ‘wow’ factor.

Consider all of the producers of products that you use today. I’ll bet that most of them weren’t first to market. Consider Google, iPhone, Tumblr, Facebook, Honda, etc. These companies were not the first to the market. But, according to their customers, they deliver a substantially better experience.

Steve Blank refers to these types of companies as fast followers:

Why do fast followers win more often? It’s pretty simple. First Movers tend to launch without really fully understanding customer problems or the product features that solve those problems. They guess at their business model and then do premature, loud and aggressive Public Relations hype and early company launches and quickly burn through their cash.. This is a great strategy if there’s a bubble occuring in your market or you are going to bet it all on flipping your company for a sale. Otherwise the jury is in. There’s no advantage.

Astute fast-followers recognize that part of Customer Discovery is learning from the first-mover by looking at the arrows in their backs. Then avoiding them.

Move fast, don’t be first, and deliver the wow. Most importantly, know the problem that you solve.

You might also enjoy:

  1. Leverage Simplicity and the Desire for Information
  2. Give Your Customers a Story to Tell
  3. Be Exceptional and People Will Market for You

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