“Demand Triggers” prove elusive in emerging businesses — at least for me
Those who have been following this blog since I fired myself from the lawyer training biz to seek out my next big thing may recall that my expectation was that, by following the conversations in a handful of industries undergoing transformational change, I would spot a high-impact problem I could solve (in the parlance of my former business, a Demand Trigger) and that would form the basis of a new venture.
I still believe that’s true, however, after absorbing information through a firehose since June, I’m reminded of some wisdom repeatedly offered by my friend, Mike Shetzer, who raises capital for some truly unusual stuff: “Whatever it is, it will take twice as long and cost twice as much as the entrepreneur projects.” Right again, Mike S.
It seems that demand-triggering problems are easier to spot in mature business categories, perhaps because more of the conversation is centered on problems, whereas in emerging industries the conversations seem more frequently to be about opportunities, milestones, etc. Why, you may ask, would conversations about opportunities not be exactly what I’m looking for? IMHO, if people have already found the opportunity, I’m inherently trailing the play. I realize that I might recognize a way to improve someone’s approach to their opportunity, but it’s been my experience that, until a strategy or tactic proves itself deficient, there is limited appetite to challenge it.
Now, it may simply be that I’ve not yet figured out how to leverage “opportunity” conversations as well as I know how to do so with “problem” conversations, and I may have to learn how to break out of an old thought pattern to get out of my own way.
So, I guess it’s back to crowd-sourcing. (With a nod to Blanche DuBois, I’ve always been comfortable depending on the kindness of strangers.)
Here is a short (certainly not exhaustive) list of industries that I perceive as undergoing fundamental change:
- Media, publishing
- Mobile tech
What do you see as some of the most significant strategic or operational issues/decisions facing these industries?
What information sources would you suggest to help me answer this question for myself?
To whom would you encourage me to speak to progress down this path?
Thank you in advance for your thoughts, suggestions and, where needed, bops upside the head.
Filed under: Personal view | 1 Comment
Tags: Crowdsourcing, Publishing