Being a leader in an industry or a market place is a good thing. Your margins can be higher than your competitors and your cost of acquiring a customer can be lower. Being a leader often times means doing things that your competition isn’t doing or doing things they are doing – but doing them better. Being better can involve innovating and taking risks which may give your business an edge for a period of time. If your business is not able to iterate and continue to deliver a better product or service you may find that your window of time has closed and that can lead to unfavourable outcomes for your business.
Privately held Bose was a pioneer in creating retail spaces where their customers would go and experience their products in a setting that made Bose a leader in their market. They designed, manufactured and sold high quality products to loyal customers that would connect with Bose through a unique retail experience. Since 1993, Bose has opened more than two hundred locations across the world but has made the decision to close every location in North America, Europe, Japan and Australia. While their retail strategy made sense for the time period in which they were doing it, Bose has come to the realization that their products are now purchased mostly through e-commerce channels including Amazon, Best Buy, Target, Apple and other third parties making their retail locations unnecessary.
Is your business doing anything innovative or are you taking risks that your competition isn’t in hopes of delivering a better experience to customers looking for the product or service your business offers? If not, there is never a better time than right now to consider how your business may take the lead of setting the bar for your market. If your business isn’t growing, it’s shrinking and doing the same thing everyone else is doing will get you the same average result that everyone else is getting. If you are relying on yesterday’s tactics to find tomorrow’s customers you may want to rethink your strategy.