Review-Digital Disruption

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Digital Disruption: Unleashing the Next Wave of Innovation, James McQuivey, 2013, ISBN 9781477800126

The increasing digitization of our world has turned the business world upside down. In every industry, some companies are getting closer to their customers and undercutting other competitors. This book gives the details.

There are many, many free digital tools available to potential innovators. Next, a digital platform is needed to get it, whatever it is, to the customer as quickly as possible. These are usually very inexpensive. Keep a very close eye on your feedback. For example, if it says that upgrades should move in this direction, instead of that direction, don’t wait until next quarter, or even next month, to do the upgrade; start on it today.

“Our company is innovative.” “Our customers are totally loyal to us.” “Our company is un-disruptable.” Can you really afford to take such a chance? Companies no longer sell products or services; they sell total product experiences. It starts when a person visits your company online for the first time, and goesall the way until they get the product home and open it. There are ways to measure just how much time a person spends at your website or Facebook page. A company goal might be to get people to spend more time there, instead of simply increasing sales.

Don’t ask “What new thing can we sell?” Instead, you should ask “What is next thing our customer needs? What adjacent need can we fill that our customer does not even know that they have?” It’s tempting to fill any new product or service with benefits for the customer, to be all things to all people. Don’t do it. Pick just a couple of the biggest benefits, and concentrate on those.

This book is full of examples of how even non-digital experiences like selling shoes can be digitally disrupted. It does a very good job of helping any company to be the disrupter, and not the one being disrupted. It is very much worth reading.

Paul Lappen is a freelance book reviewer whose blog, Dead Trees Review, emphasizes small press and self-published books.