Usually we tend to think of companies competing with their products. But, in modern, networked age, competition is taking place on platforms. Therefore, if you have a better platform, you will surely have a distinct advantage over the competition.
If we use the construction terminology, a platform is something that can lift you higher, and at the same time, others can stay on it. The same is for digital platforms. If we build a digital platform for you, other companies can efficiently connect their business with yours and build products and services on it.
Digital businesses look LESS like fixed systems and MORE like platforms.
Let´s think of a traditional company – they produce a product (or maybe more close related products), than with marketing, they try to attract potential customers. This kind of company can no longer compete with a platform-based company, which have the ability to assimilate partners and customers into their own ecosystems.
So, if you are thinking about platforms, maybe for your own business model, we give some prosperity topics that might trigger you:
- Better/quicker feedback (time)
Platform companies can do things faster than their competition. If your products and services have the tendency to frequently change, it simply enforces you and your employees to accept changes quickly. This ensures that bad habits will appear less often. If we take Amazon for example – they started with selling only books! Then they went to selling everything possible; started with Kindle, e-services, …
- Bigger Brand Awareness
You can use your customers as an excellent way to extend your brand. Facebook – it started as a site for college kids, but with endless invention, they expanded its offering in enormous way. Now they have more than 1,59 milliard of active users “spreading” their brand.
- More customers
More products and services means more customers. If you have spinning lessons you surely cannot offer dental services, but you can start with building an app for tutorial spinning classes, or using a platform for coupons, …
Establishing a platform may boost diversification and reduce risk. Think of what would happened to Apple if they were still producing only expensive hardware?
- Cutting edge technology
The most successful platforms can connect more types of users, for example: end-customers, delivery companies and contests organizing company on a prize events portal, travelers and hotel operators on a booking service, … As in every new technology, also here we can face limits. But we can fiercely expand those limits! Having a special, powerful platform lets you cultivate a special interaction with partners, users, developers and other contributor that may help innovate your business.
Things are changing fast today. While, in past generations, we could expect to learn a job/trade and follow a direct career path, today things don´t last. For example: your job may not exist anymore in about 15 years. You can try and type your job title HERE to find out the likelihood that it could be automated within the next two decades.
We are cracking all the past assumptions, because we simply no longer live in a word of products, but platforms.
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