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Jun 11

Is “Crossing The Chasm” Irrelevant In Today’s Modus Operandi?

Recently we heard, that the book “Crossing The Chasm” by Geoffrey A. Moore was redundant in today's on-line world. We disagree!

Before I explain, here's a bit of history; In 1991 Geoffrey A. Moore wrote a revolutionary book called “Crossing The Chasm”. Well, it was revolutionary for us techies trying to peddle our wares and when I say “revolutionary”, I mean from a technology perspective, because, as Michael Gerber pointed out in “The E-Myth”, new companies, especially technology based, are typically started by a technician, not an experienced marketing / sales type. So, for these people, i.e., the startup entrepreneur, Crossing The Chasm was a fantastic insight…I recall when I finally got around to reading it how much it inspired me. What Geoffrey did in Crossing The Chasm was take traditional marketing concepts, applied them to selling technology, then wrote the book around the different approach needed in order to sell it. Or, in Geoffrey’s words, make it “easy to buy”.

So the book is based on the premise that your target early adopters, i.e., the pioneer user of the technology, must have a physical connection, relationship, with the next level of adopters in order to cross the gap between them. E.g., think of the first person you met who had an iPhone, these early adopters were probably the reason you got one (if you got one). They're usually gadget people, love to show off the latest piece of technology and told you how great it was. In other words, Geoffrey's principles still apply. The only difference today is that you may be using FaceBook, LinkedIn et al., to have those dialogs in order to cross the chasm.

Having said this, Crossing The Chasm was not written from the perspective of the startup company. It was more entrenched in the established business, i.e., it's examples were existing companies that did a turnaround because they followed his principles. So for those of you who read or heard that Crossing The Chasm is redundant in today's market, please don’t pay attention, it is still a great book and will give you a great foundation for you and your business. But, wait until you have clearly defined the problem you are solving, your customer, validated the solution and have a revenue generating business.

 

"This article may not be reproduced in whole or part without including the name of the author (James Naylor) and an acknowledgement of the fact the article was originally published in Shoestring Advice for Technology Startups (http://www.KENOVATech.com/blog). Any other use of this material is unauthorized and is a violation of law."

One Comment

  1. james Naylor says:

    Thank you! We just released one wbout whether you should write a business plan or not…it may be of interest.

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