Change The Norm For The Greater Good
Just because something is always done a certain way…doesn’t mean it is right.
It is easy to be complacent. If something is moving along smoothly, why make it difficult and upset the balance? Sometimes it just takes one business to shake things up and to do things differently for people to see that there is a better way!
Uber is the most common example people point to when they think about “disruptive” businesses. If you look around, there are plenty of others leading the way too. Let’s take a look at Tesla. While very few of us may be able to afford their cars…that doesn’t mean there are not things to learn from them.
Right now Tesla is fighting a battle in many states in order to sell their cars direct to customers. Old and outdated laws in many states only allow cars to be sold through a dealer (i.e. a middleman). As the industry and retail have changed, this no longer serves the function for which it originally was intended. Initially because there were only three big car manufacturers they needed franchisees in order to have national reach and those franchisees needed protection from coercive practices from the manufacturers. Tesla turned this on its head by offering direct to consumer sales, but in many states they are battling to be able to sell their cars this way.
If you enjoy the haggling and seemingly deceptive practices of most car dealers, then the traditional car dealer set-up works for you…but most customers these days would prefer to research and manage the transaction process online in order to avoid a dealership.
So what does one do when the rules of the game are not working in their favor? Change the game! Tesla has been very creative in getting around this. In many places they have galleries where potential customers can look at the cars and schedule test drives. They let the customer own the entire process, and keep it completely transparent especially in regards to pricing and add-ons. Customers can then order while in the gallery or from the comfort of their own home.
This method allows them to use smaller and more unique spaces like a pop-up store in a converted shipping container or space inside of a Nordstrom. It is driving the established car dealerships crazy because they are not nimble enough to be creative like this.
This mentality applies to all businesses. If you have a different way to do something, and it is more user-friendly for the customer, there is no reason to do it the way it has always been done. Find a way to do it how it works best.
Let us know how you are shaking up your industry!