Product Innovation Discipline

In the 1997 book, “The Discipline of Market Leaders: Choose Your Customers Narrow Your Focus, Dominate Your Market” by Michael Treacy and Fred Wiersema… I had come to understand that in business, you are either one of these two types:

1) Operational Excellence -or-
2) Customer Intimacy Based.

You can try to do both, but to be truly successful, you can only be known for one of them.

Late last night as helping a friend study for her MBA, I came to realize that I missed a critical insight from that book: A 3rd option called “Product Innovation”.

“Product Leadership” as a market discipline is when you attempt through massive innovation to provide products or services that the markets want/need and slightly ahead of when they know they need them.

I had thought of as an Operationally excellent site, but I can see now that we are clearly more juiced with leading the market or attempting to innovate faster than the market requires.

Have you read the Discipline of Market Leaders book, and if so, what did you think of it?

1 Comment »

Benjamin Lynch writes:

I firmly agree with this. Recently a study came out which showed customer satisfaction very low with online stores – may have low pricing but service is garbage. So as I am a small store, Ive moved into a very targeted niche and create very personal service. It is working very well. I also did this with my landscape design/firm.

Stay small. Stay very focused. Stay very committed to your customer base. They will support you way more than the biggest marketing agency will.

I heard somewhere that getting a new customer is 7 times harders than getting an old customer to make another purchase. That’s a huge stat. Take it to heart.

Stop by my site and see what I mean – how I try to make it personable and interactive for my customers.

I also post quite a few articles on Chris’s awesome site – Ive been writing a lot lately but not posting here…oops! Sorry Chris – Ill get on it! :)

In health,

Comment provided January 27, 2006 at 10:27 PM


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