Seth Godin tells us about the marine iguana.

The interesting lesson for marketers is this: if iguanas had had predators and competition while this was going on, they never would have survived. The barren nature of their marketplace gave them the time they needed to evolve (or as marketers with egos would say, “figure out”) a strategy that worked.

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A great example from nature of the value of being the first and only one to do something. One thing I don’t agree with, though, is how he says later on in his post that “It takes a lot of confidence to walk into a hyper-competitive market with something new”. I think it takes more confidence to try to build the market from scratch, to enter a non-existent market. But if you’re good at it, you’ll succeed.

Look at the iPod, they redefined the market for portable music players. There weren’t many other music players at that time. They practically built the market. Others have entered it after it became a big market, but none have become that successful.

Don’t focus on the existing markets and what everyone else seems to be doing. Instead, ask yourself: What new market can you build today?