@Michiel posted a text before about Scrive on the subject short versus long term ideas. His main question was if you should launch a short term idea even though it eventually loses it’s customers. I agree with Michiel and would like share my thoughts to bring the discussion further.
I enjoyed the post and it got me thinking of short-term solutions myself. First of all, in some way, aren’t all business solutions somewhat temporary? The market isn’t constant and we live in a changing business environment. When thinking of it more closely, I couldn’t think of any company who haven’t changed their product even a bit. Telephone companies catches up with technical progress, service companies as taxi-drivers like uber update their offer to match the need of their customers. So, is there really a permanent offer and business idea? What do you think?
My second thought was how this affected the example with Scrive. Even though a customer solution might me temporary, they can still make it a successful business. The problem is probably more about the strategy of the startup since the investment costs and the development time has to be minimized for the company to be profitable even in the short run.
And the last thought about the question “should they still launch their idea?”. There’s other aspects to it when starting a business based on a short term solution. If you create an agile company with the possibility of changing their product, they can get long term use out of their short term business idea. First of all, they can build up an installed base of users that represent a customer network that can be used for future business. They can also build up structure capital that can be utilized when changing their business.
What’s your thoughts on this? Can you come up with a company that hasn’t changed their product/service at all?