Are There Hopeless Situations in Marketing?

Take a look at the chart below and think, how one should behave when the market seems to be already completely taken and the whole world sees you as a failure.

The correct answer: don’t create a „me too“ product. Think outside the box and create something completely new and better. Be different or die

Being different is the most important element in marketing

Learn from Google Plus

After failing with a „me too“ product Google Buzz, Google knew it had to get into social networking business and started working seriously. Here is the result – their new project (social network?) got 10 million users with only 16 days and is growing fast.

Google found Facebook’s weaknesses and made them it’s strengths. Facebook’s user management is rudimentary and very few people use that. In Facebook, your posts are sent out to everyone of your friends by default. In Google Plus they only go to the people you choose to send them. Circles as the tool to manage your contacts is visual, innovative and allows more flexibility than Facebook. It was one of the first things people noticed in Google+.

But Facebook already had a friend list grouping function a long time ago? Okay, Facebook has had it for a long time, but only about 5% of Facebook’s users actually use it. You don’t always have to invent something new, but you can also turn your competitors weaknesses into your strengths.

Google+ Circles brings user management to the front line and make sure you can separate business and pleasure.

Conclusion

  • Be different or die! Exactly the way Google Plus has made itself different from Facebook.
  • Think of different solutions to old problems and create something that runs circles around the incumbent offering. Google+ is not the second Facebook or Twitter. It’s different. It’s #1 there. The name of the category could be „socialnetwork with cloud services“ (Gmail, Google Docs, Youtube, etc).
  • Never lose hope. By acting smart you can find a new ways to be different and take a bite out of your competitors’ market share.

PS. Google Plus is a great example, but only time will tell if Google+ is going to be the Facebook killer. Some say that Google+ could get to 100 million users in 3 months. The difference is there. Now they should just continue in the same direction – being different and offering new solutions.

2 Responses

  1. Annes Org says:

    Thanks for the comment, Jeremy!

    Your arguments are very solid and I’ve to agree with you.

    This example wasn’t very water-proof, but the most important that I wanted to say with this post is that there are any hopeless situations in marketing. Don’t ever give up and then everything is possible! 🙂

  2. Not to be a curmudgeon, but I’m calling this post out. I don’t think you built your whole “novelty” argument on solid ground.

    After beginning with: “don’t create a ‘me too’ product … create something completely new … Be different or die,” you talk about a product that is intentionally very similar to Facebook, an existing product, with only a couple enhancements on elements Facebook already has. So I must assume you have a generous idea of “new.”

    You also made a comparison with Buzz, implying that Buzz failed because it was a “me too” product. Buzz is Google’s version of Twitter, and I can’t help but notice that Buzz has enhancements and features that Twitter doesn’t have. I submit that Buzz is at least as new and different from Twitter as Google+ is from Facebook.

    What I’m saying is, unless you have some other evidence up your sleeve, I doubt your novelty hypothesis is accurate. It may be premature to say that Google+ succeeded where Buzz failed, because Google+ has yet to see the level of activity that Facebook has, which is a much better measure of success than registered users. I do hope Google+ will eventually succeed, however, because it’s a solid product.

    Thanks for the article, and feel free to tell me I’m wrong. 🙂

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