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Death of a Legacy-Minded Company

Dec 10, 2019

Today’s shifting consumer expectations require businesses to rethink the way they operate, as the warning signs are clear. 52% of Fortune 500 companies in the year 2000 have since disappeared. They went bankrupt, got acquired, or ceased to exist. Many failed to listen to their customers’ needs and lacked innovation.

Blockbuster was once the go-to of movie rentals, but falling behind in on-demand content and personalized viewer experiences left consumers searching elsewhere. The company went bankrupt in 2010 amid the growth of new digital giants.

Borders is another story of failure to appreciate the changing times. Major missteps of this fallen company were the risks it took at the expense of the customer. Among those risks were significant changes to its rewards program and removal of its music and video sections. Borders also neglected to move to a digital e-reader amid the growth in demand for paperless reading.

Tower Records is another cautionary tale of a successful business going under because of slow adaptation. As the accessibility of streaming music steadily increased, Tower Records was faced with digital disruption. Consumers wanted music on-demand, rendering the traditional Tower Records business model obsolete.

Companies today must recognize that history has not been kind to laggards, as the greatest beneficiaries of the digital age have not been those prone to implement mere  incremental change, but rather, companies fast to transform to serve the customer.

What are you doing to help your company stay ahead of shifting consumer expectations?