Taking Advantage of Disruption- From ride sharing to media consumption

Disruption is the new buzzword for all forms of business.  From retail to restaurants, it is all about the disruptions.  The first thing one thinks of with disruption is cutting losses.  While that is important the better thought is to find the new opportunities that disruption causes.

When the automobile started mass production the story goes that it put buggy whip makers out of business.  While that is mostly true, it also opened up the opportunity to make tires, sell gasoline, and expand the roadways.

If you were watching the first automobiles arrive in your town and you thought, I need to sell the fuel for that thing, and you did something about it,  you were a winner.  If you stared at the noisy horseless carriage and lamented that the loss of income from carrying horse feed to the barn, you did not come out of that era well.

Today we are seeing the end of Taxi and Limousine services and ride-sharing services like Lyft and Uber are becoming the norm.  There are opportunities to be had.  An example is rental car companies.  Many started losing revenue and people opted to just use a ride share when traveling for business, instead of renting that mid-size car.  What did they do?  Several have partnered with ride-sharing services to rent cars to drivers who want to reduce wear and tear on their own cars.

Media companies are still trying to deal with the disruption of the internet.  They have used market controls and bundling to keep the current methods of delivery alive as long as possible, but even those are starting to unravel.  Even the premier live sport of football is starting to lose its luster and ratings are declining.  NASCAR ratings are dropping but their revenue is not, thanks to cable channel deals that will keep the money flowing for many years to come.  But even these lucrative contracts will not hold off the inevitable changing habits of people.

NASCAR ratings are dropping but their revenue is not, thanks to cable channel deals that will keep the money flowing for many years to come.  But even these lucrative contracts will not hold off the inevitable changing habits of people.  NASCAR fundamentally changed how they choose a champion twice in the past 2 decades.  If you are not a racing fan you may be thinking, your champion is the guy who drives the fastest.  While that is true, it is also about consistency.  Now there is a huge weight placed in winning as well as finishing well.  You might think, 2 major changes that is a lot, but this year they changed the format of all races at all levels to increase interest in the early parts of their 3 hour plus races.

If a sport that started from moonshiners can recognize disruption and react, then any company can do so.  CART racing tried to be a disruptor, and you are thinking CART?  there is a reason for that.  They don’t exist anymore.  Also, ask about the XFL football league and USFL.  Not all disruptors succeed.  But each disruption and each disruptor are pointing out a flaw or failure in the status quo.  Pay attention to disruptors and disruption.

Disruptions happen, they will continue to happen.  They have to be noticed early and taken advantage of, not just reacted to.

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