The Irrational Challenger

Today, irrational is the new normal. People want products and services that break conventions and defy social norms. They have expectations that don’t fit the traditional business model and feel irrational. However, they are very real and have created an irrational economy with irrational challengers. To thrive in this new playing field, business needs to be human, irrational.

Think about it.

Having a concierge to run our weekly errands for $99 month. Alfred.

Ordering a healthy and delicious meal ready-to-eat under 7 minutes delivered at your door the next day. Hungryroot.

Booking unlimited blowout appointments at salons in Manhattan for just $99 a month. Vive. (A typical blowout cost $40 to $90 inNew York City.)

Renting a room on a month-to-month basis without going through the traditional methods of verifying applicants (e.g., two years of tax returns as proof of income).Common

Receiving loans from non-bank lenders to get your small businesses off the ground. Fundera

Renting and returning designer dresses for special events. Rent the Runway.

Buying quality lingerie at a price more affordable than brick-and-mortar retailers like Victoria’s Secret. A Zara of lingerie. AdoreMe.

These are just some of the hottest startups in New York City. They also represent the biggest threat to household brands. Irrational challengers play by different rules; they have grand ambitions and big constraints. So, they create products and services that defy the laws of business gravity. This is expected by today’s consumer. These are new realities that call for a renewed inventiveness.

To learn more about the irrational challenger, I suggest reading “Beautiful constraints: How to Transform Your Limitations Into Advantages And Why It’s Everyone’s Business Now.” A marketing must have.