The economics of the music industry have changed drastically in the past 15 years. Of the several reasons two stand out: digitization, and a large contingent of music listeners that grew up with electronics see no moral or ethical problem with file sharing all music for free.
The economics of the newspaper industry have changed drastically in the past 10 years. Of the several reasons two stand out: wide access to the internet, and an expectation of instant news better met by other providers.
The economics of the television industry have changed drastically in the past 15 years. Of the several reasons two stand out: the digitization of signal and the alternate distribution models of satellites and cable.
The economics of retail have changed drastically over the past 10 years. Of the several reasons two stand out: new expectations for choice, availability, price, information and fast delivery created by the internet, especially Amazon, and the uninformed service providers in many brick & mortar stores.
The economics of the manufacturing industry are changing right now. China may represent the best known example of differing ethics (aka, respect for copyright and or patents) affecting manufacturers. Digitization is everywhere, which enables the 3D printer to increasingly meet the “I want it and I want it now” aspect of demand. New distribution channels are evolving, impacted by the need for cost reduction and the expectation of immediate supply.
If you assume your industry is immune from these shifts you are wrong. Whether B2B or B2C, your world is morphing into something you haven’t faced before. But there are plenty of examples from which we can learn.
Sam Cooke may not have talking about the economics of the music industry, or of the manufacturing industry, but don’t stick your head in the sand believing “we’re different.” You’re not. As Sam wrote, “this is a mean old world to try and live in…”