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Disruption Is Rarely About Better Product, Improving an Industry, or Helping Consumers

Kin Lane offers an opinion on what disruption really means (and what it doesn't).

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I often fall for the Kool-Aid flavor of the day, out of tech community. I'll be sipping it regularly, thinking I'm immune to its effects, until one day I'm like, "that is some damn good cool raspberry flavor!". Even though I know better, I still get duped by the magic of it all sometimes.

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When I read the regular flow of marketing coming out of startups, it can be easy to fall prey to the belief that startups are truly building a better mousetrap, changing how business is done, and redefining an entire industry. We all love a great American dream story! When in reality, 95% of the time this is the marketing Kool-Aid of the day, and when startups wield the term "disruption" or "revolution" it does not mean what they often say in their marketing.

Despite popular claims, startups are less interested in building a better product, running a better business, helping consumers, and redefining the way things occur in an industry than they are attracting the interest of a buyer. Often times this is the 1000 lb gorilla in the space, and what better mating dance than the disruption and revolution chest thump.

Disruption isn't a threat, it is a mating call. If you don't buy me, we will take your customers, and make you look old and outdated. We are young, new and shiny and people like us better. If you buy us, then people will be forced to love you, and all will be OK.

It helps to step away from the regular flow of storytelling in the space, allowing me to see what much of the information is really about, and who the coded marketing speak is really crafted for--not us (well unless you are looking to buy? Are you?).

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Published at DZone with permission of Kin Lane, DZone MVB. See the original article here.

Opinions expressed by DZone contributors are their own.

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