Focusing on Markets

I am learning more and more about a startups vehement focus and understanding of the market they are going after.

In Richard Branson’s autobiography he speaks about entering already existing markets like he did with Virgin Atlantic and doing a much better job than what existed in that market prior. Virgin does an outstanding job of doing this. In South Africa, Virgin tried to enter the cellphone market with Virgin Mobile and failed, but acknowledged this and left this market. Here is a nice article about Brait’s recent purchase of Virgin Active, a market Virgin has done a very good job of conquering

In the case of AirBnB they entered a market that never existed and have done a fantastic job of owning that market.

Steve Job’s seemed to take a different approach. He focused on a product and believed that the market will be created around that. He did that brilliantly with the iPhone, iPod and iPad.

“It’s really hard to design products by focus groups. A lot of times, people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.” Steve Jobs.

This was defiantly in the vain of Henry Ford who famously said “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.”