Brian Solis sat down with venture capitalist Mark Suster to discuss the state of innovation and the differences between emerging and disruptive technology – and it is an interview every entrepreneur, investor and even business owner should take 18 minutes out of their day to listen to.
Being able to recognize the difference between emerging and disruptive technology and measuring its impact on your bottom line, customer relationships and products is a necessary discipline needed by businesses today to successfully evolve:
- EMERGING: Emerging technologies are contemporary advances and innovation in various fields of technology.
- DISRUPTIVE: The term disruptive technologies was coined by Clayton M. Christensen and suggests that successful companies can put too much emphasis on customers’ current needs, and fail to adopt new technology or business models that will meet customers’ unstated or future needs; he argues that such companies will eventually fall behind.
Companies can become ‘stuck’ if their industry has not experienced a disruption, and many become complacent. It does not matter if you are a small business or one of the Fortune 50, complacency has the potential to kill your business. Anyone remember Friendster? For you computer geeks – what about Commodore? Wait, did I just totally date myself here?. Businesses nowadays should constantly be innovating; whether around your product/service, your internal business processes, your customer support, etc. Remember, you can always do better, and if you don’t – someone else surely will as Friendster found out with the launch of MySpace, and MySpace found out with the launch of Facebook.
For me, the ‘nugget’ of this interview is when Suster discusses the need for businesses to embrace social tools that are distributed across the company’s website rather than [only] driving everyone to their Facebook fan page. While the latter can be an important marketing tool for your business, bringing them to a web property that you own and control will not only ensure better communications and service opportunities for you and the people using your product/service, but also bring better visibility and statistics on who is actually interacting with your company. These are critical insights missing from today’s social networks (well, to the user any way), and as Suster so eloquently says…”be thinking more about the Goose and less about the Golden Egg“.
Hit the big old play button here and have yourself a listen. It is a great discussion on the future of the web and hope you will enjoy it as much as we did:
We too are excited about the coming of social tools *cough* Swipp *cough* that are distributed across websites bridging social media, personal data and commerce for the betterment of businesses and their customers.
So Mark, think it is safe to say…we’ll be in touch.