Click here to close now.

SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, Carmen Gonzalez, Kevin Jackson, Peter Silva

News Feed Item

Innovators Should Beware of "Fools Gold": Seeing Opportunity in Empty Market Spaces That Are Empty for a Very Good Reason

Look for Three Red Flags and Ask These Six Questions to Make Sure Your "Blue Ocean" and "Greenfield" Opportunities Are What You Think They Are

NEW YORK, NY -- (Marketwired) -- 04/22/14 -- Innovators often use terms like "greenfield" opportunities and "blue oceans" to describe empty market spaces that appear to hold enormous growth potential. But often these empty "white spaces" exist for a reason that the innovator fails to see.

"Many great growth businesses came from creating new markets, so it's not hard to understand the attraction," says Scott D. Anthony, Managing Partner and head of the Asia-Pacific operations of the innovation consulting firm Innosight, and author of The First Mile: A Launch Manual for Getting Great Ideas into the Market (Harvard Business Review Press, May 2014). "But innovation requires specialized structures and systems to weed out the great ideas from the non-starters. Without the right innovation skill set, companies seeking big growth opportunities can go drastically wrong."

He cautions that innovators need to pay particular attention to three red flags that may indicate the market isn't what they think it is:

  • NO NEED: The presumed customer need isn't a real customer need -- even when research may identify and define a need, customers quite often say they will do things that they actually won't do.
  • BARRIERS TO ADOPTION: There are powerful stakeholders that can inhibit adoption of a new idea -- e.g., regulators, purchasers, or other market players.
  • POOR ECONOMICS: The fundamental economics of the space/idea aren't attractive.

"Executives and managers of every stripe need to resist the urge to continue doing the same thing that is making them successful today," says Anthony. "They need to see past the corporate culture, controls, and mindset of the moment to envision what will be driving growth five or ten years from now. But in doing so, they need to be realistic in their assumptions and projections. Not every great idea translates into a viable business or a commercial success."

Example: A medical tourism business that failed before launch.

Anthony points to an example that failed all three tests: a business based on medical tourism to Asia (e.g., Singapore, Thailand), where low cost and high quality might attract American customers. But the business model failed in three critical ways:

  • NO NEED: American patients showed tepid demand for all but a few expensive procedures.
  • BARRIERS TO ADOPTION: American hospitals were willing and able to lower prices on those procedures to attract patients to domestic providers.
  • POOR ECONOMICS: The economics of long-distance travel were not as attractive as travel to closer international medical sites like those in the Caribbean and Mexico.

Six key questions to ask before trying to create an entirely new market.

Anthony believes that innovators approaching "blue ocean" and "greenfield" opportunities need to ask some very tough questions, including:

  • Why hasn't this been done before?
  • Who are the people who might have done it?
  • Did they try?
  • Why did they or didn't they?
  • If it is obvious to us, why wasn't it obvious to other smart people who had opportunities to make money?
  • What do they know that we don't?

"'White spaces' exist because some technological, regulatory, or societal shift has opened up a new opportunity, or the innovator has a unique asset that suddenly makes an unreachable market reachable," says Anthony. "If that's the case then by all means proceed. Some people see markets before the world does. But if your future success is based merely on your superior intelligence, that you think you see something that others don't, then you need to proceed with a high degree of caution."

To arrange a conversation with Scott D. Anthony of Innosight, and/or receive a copy of The First Mile: A Launch Manual for Getting Great Ideas into the Market, contact Katarina Wenk-Bodenmiller of Sommerfield Communications at 212-255-8386 or [email protected].

ABOUT SCOTT D. ANTHONY
Scott D. Anthony is the Managing Partner of Innosight. Based in the firm's Singapore office, he leads its expansion into the Asia-Pacific region as well as its venture capital activities (Innosight Ventures). He has worked with clients ranging from national governments to companies in industries as diverse as healthcare, telecommunications, consumer products and software. He is the author of The Little Black Book of Innovation (Harvard Business Review Press, January 2012) and The Silver Lining (Harvard Business Review Press, 2009). He is the co-author of Seeing What's Next (Harvard Business Review Press, 2004) and The Innovator's Guide to Growth (Harvard Business Review Press, 2008).

About Innosight
Innosight is a strategy and innovation consulting firm that helps organizations navigate disruptive change and manage strategic transformation. We work with enterprise leaders to identify new growth opportunities, accelerate innovation initiatives, and build innovation capabilities. Innosight is based in Lexington, MA, with offices in Singapore and Lausanne, Switzerland.
www.innosight.com

More Stories By Marketwired .

Copyright © 2009 Marketwired. All rights reserved. All the news releases provided by Marketwired are copyrighted. Any forms of copying other than an individual user's personal reference without express written permission is prohibited. Further distribution of these materials is strictly forbidden, including but not limited to, posting, emailing, faxing, archiving in a public database, redistributing via a computer network or in a printed form.

Latest Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Dyn, the worldwide leader in Internet Performance, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Dyn is a cloud-based Internet Performance company. Dyn helps companies monitor, control, and optimize online infrastructure for an exceptional end-user experience. Through a world-class network and unrivaled, objective intelligence into Internet conditions, Dyn ensures...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Open Data Centers (ODC), a carrier-neutral colocation provider, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Open Data Centers is a carrier-neutral data center operator in New Jersey and New York City offering alternative connectivity options for carriers, service providers and enterprise customers.
SYS-CON Events announced today the DevOps Foundation Certification Course, being held June ?, 2015, in conjunction with DevOps Summit and 16th Cloud Expo at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. This sixteen (16) hour course provides an introduction to DevOps – the cultural and professional movement that stresses communication, collaboration, integration and automation in order to improve the flow of work between software developers and IT operations professionals. Improved workflows will res...
SYS-CON Events announced today that On the Avenue Marketing Group, a sales and marketing firm that utilizes events to market and sell products to consumers, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. On the Avenue Marketing Group (OTA) is a sales and marketing firm that utilizes events to market and sell products to consumers. On behalf of our clients, we attend thousands of fairs, festivals, exp...
SYS-CON Events announced today that ActiveState, the leading independent Cloud Foundry and Docker-based PaaS provider, has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's DevOps Summit New York, which will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. ActiveState believes that enterprises gain a competitive advantage when they are able to quickly create, deploy and efficiently manage software solutions that immediately create business value, but they face many challenges that ...
BroadSoft on Tuesday announced that it is a recipient of the 2014 Frost & Sullivan Market Leadership Award in the Hosted/Cloud Internet Protocol (IP) Telephony market for Latin America. According to Frost & Sullivan market research, the Latin America (LATAM) hosted/cloud Internet Protocol (IP) telephony market, including integrated unified communications and collaboration (UC&C) applications, is currently experiencing a rapid growth trajectory and is expected to exhibit a tenfold rise in annual...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Vitria Technology, Inc. will exhibit at SYS-CON’s @ThingsExpo, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Vitria will showcase the company’s new IoT Analytics Platform through live demonstrations at booth #330. Vitria’s IoT Analytics Platform, fully integrated and powered by an operational intelligence engine, enables customers to rapidly build and operationalize advanced analytics to deliver timely business outcomes ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Alert Logic, the leading provider of Security-as-a-Service solutions for the cloud, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo® and DevOps Summit 2015 New York, which will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 17th International Cloud Expo® and DevOps Summit 2015 Silicon Valley, which will take place November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Plutora, Inc., the leading global provider of enterprise release management and test environment management SaaS solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's DevOps Summit 2015 New York, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Headquartered in Mountain View, California, Plutora provides enterprise release management and test environment SaaS solutions to clients in North America, Europe and Asia Pacific. Leading companies ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Akana, formerly SOA Software, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo® New York, which will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Akana’s comprehensive suite of API Management, API Security, Integrated SOA Governance, and Cloud Integration solutions helps businesses accelerate digital transformation by securely extending their reach across multiple channels – mobile, cloud and Internet of Thi...
SOASTA, the leader in performance analytics, today reported record growth of the CloudTest community, exceeding 30,000 registered users of the CloudTest platform in Q1 2015. SOASTA also announced widespread adoption of its Web and mobile testing solutions, with more than 1,600 customers completing more than 285,000 tests using CloudTest during the quarter. This rapid growth shows that DevOps-driven digital businesses are embracing a more continuous approach to testing, and CloudTest is meeting t...
SYS-CON Events announced today that CommVault has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. A singular vision – a belief in a better way to address current and future data management needs – guides CommVault in the development of Singular In...
ProfitBricks, the provider of painless cloud infrastructure for IaaS, today announced the release of a Node.js SDK written against its recently launched REST API. This new JavaScript based library provides coverage for all existing ProfitBricks REST API functions. With additional libraries set to release this month, ProfitBricks continues to prove its dedication to the DevOps community and commitment to making cloud migrations and cloud management painless. Node.js is an open source, cross-pl...
SYS-CON Events announced today that SafeLogic has been named “Bag Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo® New York, which will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. SafeLogic provides security products for applications in mobile and server/appliance environments. SafeLogic’s flagship product CryptoComply is a FIPS 140-2 validated cryptographic engine designed to secure data on servers, workstations, appliances, mobile devices, and in the Cloud....
SYS-CON Events announced today that FierceDevOps will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. FierceDevOps keeps software developers and IT operations personnel updated on the latest news and trends around the rapidly evolving role of the traditional IT worker.