SmartBrief is partnering with Big Think to create a weekly video spotlight in SmartBrief on Leadership called “VIP Corner: Video Insights Powered by Big Think.” This week, we’re featuring The Cambridge Group CEO Steve Carlotti.
Apple offers two very different examples of approaching latent demand, Carlotti says. He says iTunes is an example of emerging demand, while the iPad is an example of finding and filling a gap in the market.
Carlotti notes that iTunes unbundled and curated the music experience, which was a turnaround from its past. While Napster did something similar and offered it for free, iTunes charged for the service, and iTunes’ success illustrates that the unbundled and curated experience is the core value for customers, not that it could be free. “So it’s a great example of a market evolution where the market went from bundled for money, to unbundled for free, to unbundled for money, where the core element of the consumer value proposition was the unbundling and the curating, rather than the free,” he says.
The iPad, on the other hand, is an example of gaps within markets, Carlotti says. Before the iPad, consumers had the cellphone and they had the personal computer, which left some kind of dissatisfaction. He says video is one of those lacking elements for which cellphones and PCs competed. But then the iPad came along, which is a “smartphone plus” and a “PC minus,” and offered a medium for viewing video, as well as searching, using Skype and other things, Carlotti says. He points out that consumers also use the iPad as a productivity device, making it similar to the PC in some ways. “So I think in a way, iPad is a good example of latent demand, but it’s also a good example of a tool whereby sometimes you can find the gap in a market as a way of uncovering latent demand,” Carlotti says.