The 1-9-90 of Innovation

The 1-9-90 of Innovation

Sandeep Barve 04/06/2020 8
The 1-9-90 of Innovation

You don’t have to be an innovator to offer something innovative in the market.

I am sure we all have heard of 1-9-90 of online marketing. If you haven’t here’s the link.

I could draw the parallels of this in innovation. Here it reflects:

A) 1% : These are the actual innovators of technologies and disruptive ideas. Mostly universities or company funded initiatives and might takes ages to come close to its commercial application( e.g. AI evolution since 1950). Lot of ideas fail and one needs deep pockets and foresightedness to invest to innovate something.

B) 9% : These are businesses that sense maturity of one or more technologies and partner with the innovators to build use cases around the innovation. There could be more than one use cases for any technology. e.g AR use cases across manufacturing, healthcare or education or IOT & AR combination being developed by companies across sectors ( link). An innovation or ideas become successful only after few iterations or early failures and requires high risk taking abilities and culture of accepting failures to pursue something unique and different.

C) 90% : Rest of the businesses that become actual deployer of the innovations taking those use cases forward for commercialisation & to be consumed by masses.

This 90% segment is crucial to decide the early movers, followers & laggards.

Amongst these 90%, only 10% companies adopt the technologies ahead of others and gain the early mover advantage, higher market share and gain competitive edge over others for a significant period.

Then there are 60% companies who adopt those once those are proven, tried and tested.

The rest 20% are laggards who adopt only when it becomes an existential crisis, almost like under coercion. Few of those become victim of adopting too late and enter the market in its downfall.

Therefore I will repeat my earlier statement “You don’t have to be an innovator to offer something innovative in the market.”

You just have to be amongst the early 10% adopters of the proven use cases.

Becoming an early adopter of #innovation can give a business significant competitive advantage.

Now it’s for you to explore, find out and think which use cases applies to your industries, fit in context of your business that no one has yet launched commercially.

What do you think?

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  • Mike Ross

    You are a great source of inspiration.

  • Pete Wilson

    Eye opening read

  • Eduardo Guerra

    Simply brilliant

  • Alice Clissold

    You have to be amongst the early adaptors !

  • Kathy Lunner


  • Sam Worthington

    That was very helpful

  • Owen Z

    You nailed it

  • Lee Johnson

    Thank you for the insights!

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Sandeep Barve

Management Expert

Sandeep is the Co-Founder and Managing Director of In-Unison Pvt.LTD;  a company engaged in business strategy, leadership & business transformation of different firms across diverse sectors, size & scale. He is an expert in leadership & organisational transformations having successfully completed many enterprise scale projects for multi-national companies and has consulted many firms in successful transition across business life-cycle stages. Sandeep holds a Bachelor in Banking & Finance from Osmania University and an MBA in Strategic Management from the Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta.

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