One way to grow your business is to outcompete your competitors with innovative products or services. But what is the right way to disrupt the market with your innovative offering?
Innovation leadership frameworks indicate that you should create innovative products or services to serve consumers or clients who are either not being served or only partially served by the market (usually a niche). In other words, you basically start from the bottom of the market offering better products or services than the competitors in terms of value and/or performance, and ideally in terms of price. The other option is to create a new innovative product or service proving higher value or performance, one that creates a whole new market where the competitors’ offering becomes completely obsolete. If you do this, you should also focus on clients or customers at the bottom of the market.
After consolidating your place at the bottom of the market, you should improve your offerings with the aim of meeting the requirements of the mass market, and then the high-end market. At all times, your products or services should be better than the competitors in terms of value or performance, and preferably in terms of price too. At this point if successful, you’ll be disrupting the market by challenging the existing incumbents.
Don’t be discouraged if you are a small fish in a big market pond. The big fishes are less likely to be able to compete at the low market end due to economic restrictions. Additionally, if being the small fish makes you quicker, then it will be easier for you to become a disruptor.
If you would like to see the sequence in practice, we invite you to do some online research about video/audio streaming services. What they did is an excellent example of disruptive innovation.