How do you perceive the word "disruptive" , when talking about a new product
When you hear that a new product is “disruptive”, do you think first of the benefit that it may bring to you, or do you perceive it to be a marketing gimmick for the company selling it? Or is it something else?
I think the term may be overused and imply that a product or service will create or transform a market but actually be hyped by marketing.
Over my fifty years of observation of markets there have been transformational products that impacted a market and spawned more competition in response to the initial event.
Transistors, lasers, networking communication, the desktop computer, Google, Facebook, Apple in several areas, GPS systems, to name a few. But within a market as it is emerging I agree that once the breakthrough has reached a critical success point much of what follows is evolutionary.
For me, "disruptive" means going beyond incremental innovation into the realm of "transformational" innovation. It's hard to define perfectly, but you know it when you see it. Netflix disrupted Blockbuster Video. iPhone disrupted flip phones. Digital photography disrupted film. Automobiles disrupted horses. Typically, when I see true disruption, it is accompanied by the bankruptcy or near-bankruptcy of the incumbent because it's a big deal.
I see it depending on the context. Disruptive, within the description of a particular technology within a business plan, it means that the technology will be able to transform the landscape of existing technologies and self-impose as the technology of choice. This will be due to higher efficiencies, lower costs, and a considerable better connection between products and consumers, and such benefits would be accompanied by numbers and business cases. If it is within the marketing context, I see the term "disruptive" as slightly negative or as gimmick. The reason is that disruptive companies rarely portray themselves as "disruptive" (e.g. Apple, Microsoft, Netflix, etc), but rather bring products and technologies to the market that are finally accepted as disruptive. The reality is that all these disruptive products face in many cases a considerable level of resistance from the status quo and are only finally confirmed as disruptive by the markets.
A lot of good comments here, but the cynic in me admits that "disruption" has the same Buzzword Bingo feel as "agile", "innovation", or phrases like "it's like Uber, but for ...".
Less cynically, I'm a simple man who considers the term in its most simple sense! Disruption for me is about novel entries to the market that not only step outside standards for the product, but more-so ignore the process by which their more traditional competitors would reach the customer experientially. This is especially true where they can more genuinely meet the need of the consumer, and avoid the environmental or structural limitations of traditional players.
For example, right now I'm hungry and would like a pizza. I'm too lazy to find my phone, much less drive to the pizza shop. A disruptive player would somehow realize this hunger and laziness (perhaps buying some of Zuckerberg's data and running it through Watson's giant AI brain, or whatever the clever kids do these days), and then have someone turn up at my door with a large half-and-half pepperoni / Hawaiian*.
*Don't respond if your comment is about pineapple not belonging on pizza. We know that you are entitled to your opinion (even when it is objectively wrong).
I have a new perspective on the use of the term disruptive. I apply a limited view of it to situations where a new idea, process, or practice, causes a market response that indicates a discernible change. Tariffs for example, are disruptive, and in many ways. Since there was no way to predict the action of imposing tariffs, there is little way of determining the full impact of the outcomes. A tariff could cause the ultimate demise of a market, but would less likely immediately cause a new market to emerge (certain appliances get too expensive causing the supply chain to react, forcing distributors to source less expensive alternatives). So disruptions that are based on technology breakthroughs can generate ripples that spawn new markets, transform existing ones, and possibly eliminate others. Although important to predict, it would be more important to determine the ripple impacts and change to the market dynamics. Another hypothetical example would be the commercialization of fusion energy production. The ripple effects would be massive.
You missed the point of my comment David. We are no better today with our ability to forecast disruptions and the ripple effects. Likewise, we are not able to predict disruptions related to technological breakthroughs and when or if the ripples will profoundly impact business. We observe that many companies are disruptive adverse from a planning point of view and seriously misjudge the impact of a disruptive event.
Evolvement of the consumer product usually going by incremental improvement of the characteristics, for example smart phones. In this matter I will take word "disruptive" for modular smartphone (unfortunately now stopped) , when significant capability is added. Other word similar is "breakthrough" which no anymore a buzz word in marketing (tear and wear effect)
Add to my list of long term successful disruptive innovations CRISPR gene splicing and repair capabilities, and the seemingly endless application of Artificial Intelligence to every market segment and processes found within each.
But CRISPRs promise is one that has the potential to impact every life globally in a significant manner, and will have a future time ripple effect that we cannot fully imagine.
Likewise, AI will be embedded in an inestimable number of applications, products, services.
But consider that CRISPR and AI together clearly bring new meaning to the term disruptive innovation. The sum of the two bringing about massive global economic impacts.
I submit that were we to have commercially viable fusion energy production we would experience multiple disruptions to a number of industries and markets that could benefit from a new energy production cost point. A lower cost energy producing technology will transform a great number of businesses, and alter manufacturing processes far more than other disruptors like solar and wind power.
The “HEALTH CARE & INSURANCE DISRUPTORS” of Yesterday?
What about Today?
A decade or so ago, author Malcolm Gladwell wrote the book “David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants.”
Since then, these ten health care/insurance business model-styled case study examples sought to explain how the digital players would do things differently, more efficiently, with less time and less anxiety.
Much like the nascent ABJ initiative, special attention was paid to their potential service offerings, revenue model, perceived market performance, strategy, and perceived technology innovations that would impact the health insurance industry in the future.
- Oscar health
- Clover health
- Bright health
- Collective health
PS: I gave my nephew a birthday present. They next day, he asked me for another gift. So, I reminded him of my BD present the previous day. His reply: "What have you done for me lately."
Well - The future is now. So, how are these companies - first touted as "industry disruptors" - performing, today?