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2014 - The year of the Entrepreneur?

Author: Jacapo Tabarelli

A LinkedIn article by Christopher Schroeder pointed out that, as a consequence of today’s technological advances, entrepreneurs have no boundaries when marketing their innovation.

 

Until about 10 to 15 years ago, when internet use was sporadic among the lower classes and social networking was unknown to most, an entrepreneur who happened to come across a brilliant idea could only start selling it locally using often expensive marketing tools such as pamphleting, door-to-door sales, and conventional media ads. If things turned out well for him, his innovation would slowly crawl up the ladder of success and start expanding to other geographic areas, reaching different cities first, then different countries, and, finally, different continents. However, much money would be spent on the process and the likelihood that such plans bore fruit were slim.

Today, entrepreneurs are not restrained by these boundaries. One can sell their innovation on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest and other social media avenues. Setting up accounts on thee networks is free and, in an instant – using sound marketing strategies – the budding entrepreneur is able to connect to millions of people worldwide. As a result, no geographical borders are in place and one’s business can grow at a far greater rate than what was possible until 15 years ago. Recent successes by start-ups in the technology industry serve as testaments to this new reality. Snapchat, set up by a young man in his basement, turned down a $3 billion offer from Facebook and is now valued at $10 billion.

Most people who have a roof over their heads have internet today. It is estimated that within the next decade, there will be 5 billion smartphones in circulation. That means approximately two thirds of the planet’s population will be able to access the internet in a instant, wherever they are. 

2014 might therefore be the year of the entrepreneur. It will be a step forward toward the finish-line – one step forward on the road toward that day when everyone, anywhere, will be empowered to change the world in the blink of an eye. The growth of the internet will incentivize more people to take their business from imagination to reality. Competition for attention on social media will increase – a development that will ensure that only the top quality products and those that appeal to the highest number of people will ‘make it’. 

Internet shifts the focus to the consumer. Consumers are given more choice as they can actively seek products from blogs and social media instead of being limited to those choices that are detailed on spoon-fed television and magazine ads, as was the case until the internet revolution took hold.

In summary, the future is bright: both for the innovator, as he will be able to rely on more effective and cheaper tools to market his product, and for the consumer, as he will be able to take on a more active role in the discernment of what product is particularly suited to his/her needs and desires.

Image courtesy of Vlado at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Tagged under: leadership, Innovation,

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