Posted by: Brandon W. Jones | June 15, 2011

Knowing When to Follow the Trend

Recently, I purchased a smart phone. It took me a while to buy a smart phone, but now that I have one I love it. I have found all kinds of applications (apps) to make life easier. I have also found that there are many companies without apps that are missing out on profit opportunities. They have not entered the market smart phone market yet so they are now behind the competition.

In many cases there is wisdom in waiting to see if a trend sticks before spending time, money, and effort following the trend. When the trend is temporary the companies that invest early lose a lot of money which may cause challenges for survival.

On the flip side, strategically waiting too long to enter/follow a new trend can cause a major setback for a company if they wait too long to enter the market.

The challenge leaders face is knowing when to enter a specific market by following a new trend. Each industry is different so the approach is different. As an organization you should set parameters to determine when your company will enter new markets and follow the new trends. By thinking through the process prior to confronting the decision, you will already be a step ahead of the competition.

As a company, you should also determine areas you will lead the industry by setting trends. When setting trends, it is essential to focus on your competitive advantages so you work to your strengths.

How does your company decide whether or not to follow a trend?

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Responses

  1. Brandon, trust me, it was definitely time to follow the trend on smartphones. What kind of leadership strategy prevented you from entering this trend?

    On a lighter note, I agree with you that some are too quick while others wait for the trend to be over to join in. Social media is a lot like this because so many companies are afraid to really embrace it, siting it a “fad.”
    Thanks for the great post. Miriam

    • Thank you for the comment Miriam! For my situation, there was no leadership strategy per se that prevented me from getting a smart phone. I just didn’t have a strong need based on my position within my current organization to have one.

      As you mentioned, there are many companies that have a fear of the social media environment. I have seen some companies that only entered the social media environment because they experienced negative effects from not being involved.

      Leaders need to have foresight to know when to enter new markets/follow new trends so their organizations see the most success. Thanks, Brandon

  2. Hi! I’m at work surfing around your blog from my new iphone 4!
    Just wanted to say I love reading your blog and
    look forward to all your posts! Keep up the great work!


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