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Innovate - Leverage - Commoditize, a practical bidet example

In the realm of business strategy, there's a mind-bending concept known as "Innovate - Leverage - Commoditize."


It's not just a mouthful of buzzwords; it's a model described by the brilliant Simon Wardley that reveals how businesses can thrive by navigating innovation, leveraging metadata, and commoditizing services.


In simpler terms, it's the art of growing your business while taking minimal risks. But how does it apply to a niche market like bidet showers? Well, grab your toilet humor, because we're about to embark on a witty journey into the world of bathroom equipment.


The Bidet Shower Producer's Predicament


Picture this:

You're the proud producer of a handy yet seldom-purchased gadget—the bidet shower. It's a little-known gem that adds oodles of value to bathrooms but seldom gets chit-chatted about at brunch.


You've set up your online shop, but there's a snag—the world isn't Googling "bidet shower" all that often.


Instead, they're flocking to speciality stores for all things bathroom-related. These shops stock your product and offer a dazzling array of choices to discerning customers. To make matters worse, designers have the freedom to select any brand for their bathroom masterpieces.


But, being the ambitious business owner you are, you yearn for growth. You've expanded your product line, and you daydream of ousting those middlemen.


Here's the rub: the status quo seems pretty darn stable. Intermediaries charge a premium, so if you slash your e-shop prices or create a formidable brand, they'll drop you like a hot potato. It's a logical move for them. And if you upset the delicate balance, chaos could ensue.


Strategic Shenanigans


This conundrum presents a juicy strategic choice. Maybe you don't want to make your e-shop the ultimate bidet shower destination. Just a smidge less tempting than expected, so that only the particularly inattentive customers will stumble upon your offerings. Your shop isn't about raking in the cash; it's about maintaining a healthy dose of competition in the market and ensuring other sellers uphold certain standards.


Now, here's where it gets spicy. Instead of head-on competition with the sellers of your products, consider nibbling away at their businesses in bite-sized chunks. Offer services that make their lives easier—stand management, out-of-the-box inspirations, or designer communities. The goal isn't just to siphon value from your intermediaries; it's about enhancing their efficiency, so they gobble up space in the market. Your services become irresistible, improving your bargaining power and lessening the intermediaries' burden. Soon enough, they'll realize they're merely bricks-and-mortar shops with fancy brands, while you, my friend, are the de facto operator of their businesses.


Innovate - Leverage - Commoditize, Bidet Style


In the wacky world of bidet showers, innovation isn't about reinventing the wheel; it's about subtlety and finesse. It's about keeping the status quo intact while masterfully pulling the strings behind the scenes. You're not just a bidet shower producer; you're a strategic genius, orchestrating an elegant dance of competition and cooperation in the bathroom accessory universe.


So, the next time you contemplate your bidet shower empire, remember the wisdom of Simon Wardley and the power of Innovate - Leverage - Commoditize.


Your quirky, life-altering gadgets may not make headlines, but they can certainly make waves in the world of strategic business thinking. And who knows, one day, bidet showers might just become the talk of the town. Until then, keep innovating, leveraging, and commoditizing, one spritz at a time.


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