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Changing with the audience

As opposed to changing in search of new audiences.

Every product follows an adoption cycle. But very few have the same audience transition through all the stages.

The early adopters flocked to the product because they liked the simplicity of it, or the lack of clutter, or the elegant way it solved a problem. It is very difficult to keep this reason alive as the product transitions from early adopters to a larger scale adoption. Zappos was one, DigitalOcean (perhaps?) another that I can think of that kept its magic sauce alive through the transition.

Many fail.

And when they fail, they are starting the fight all over again for a new audience, albeit with a little bit of brand recognition and hype. But that is rarely enough to steal attention away from big guns who have a lot more clout in the market. Very few manage to make a mark and trudge on. Some get acquired.

On the other hand, it is not enough to keep doing the same thing for the same people. They get bored and move to the next shiny thing.

The key is to keep delighting the existing audience and take them along in the journey, to change with the audience.

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