It’s that time of year again.
You’re all back from holiday (except the empty nesters, who are grabbing a kid-free cheap break) and the FD/CFO has issued the first instruction that will turn into the annual budget pitch-fest.
Quarter 4 gets busy. Everybody is chasing a year-end target and management is fixated on what comes next. Deep joy!
Happily, the markets that you sell into don’t change radically overnight so, generally, there’s time to adapt the budget to meet any short-term competition that has cropped up this year: a bit more promotional work; some entertaining; don’t replace anyone who leaves – at least, not straight away. Marketing has the new designs and subtle changes to your line-up in-hand, and everything looks good for next year too.
Of course, marketing might not have all the answers. Market research tends to report signals of change after they’ve happened – and that’s all it can do: MR needs data, and data, by definition, is historical.
So, maybe there’s a ‘but’…
What if somebody’s chipping away at your market without you knowing yet? What if customer sentiment is shifting to a shiny new idea? What if there’s a new kid on the block and your disruptive competition hasn’t really got going?
What if we need to be looking just a bit beyond Q4 and Q1 2019? What if a new plan would be a good idea?
Is your market in decline? Resurgent innovation is your ticket out.
Any market today presents incumbent businesses with challenges that need to be considered in a new way.
Technology-led start-ups are increasingly insurgent and can steal your revenue without carrying your overhead. But why should they?
You’ve got customers, revenue, profit to re-invest, brand equity, reputation, tradition, trust – and people working with you who know the market in detail. Look at it this way and you’ve got all the tools that a new start-up would give its right arm for.
The only difference is that they want to do something new and you want to keep doing the same thing.
Just because it’s old, doesn’t mean it’s over.
Online may take away from some professional services. Virtual may take away from physical. Digital may take away from personal. But the real point is that you have the business today, and it’s always been easier to keep it than to grow it from scratch.
So we want to put a fire back in your belly and add a new word to the business lexicon. Let the underfunded start-ups be disruptive, watch investors tip money into the black hole they call ’emerging’ and ‘insurgent’. Here is the chance for established business to push back and be RESURGENT with innovation as the tool of choice. Drop the feeling that the world’s working against you and start using the tools that you’ve been given.
Let innovation lead you away from the looming shadow of emerging technology and unspecified threat.
Seeing it differently. Future-proofing. It’s what we do.