Crossing the Chasm (Geoffrey A. Moore)

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Geoffrey A. Moore, Crossing the Chasm, HarperBusiness (Revised edition 2002), ISBN: 0060517123

High-tech marketing expert identifies the greatest challenge facing new ventures and shows how to address It

Every year, according to high-tech marketing expert Geoffrey Moore, millions of dollars invested in high-tech entrepreneurial ventures are lost trying to "cross the chasm" from early market success to mainstream market leadership. Moore, President of Geoffrey Moore Consulting, identifies and addresses the key challenges facing such ventures in the long-awaited paperback edition of Crossing the Chasm: How to Win Mainstream Markets for Technology Products

Targeted at venture capitalists, product managers, and tech marketers, Moore's book identifies a fundamental flaw in the standard high-tech marketing model, which postulates smooth sales growth through a series of well-defined, ever-larger markets. In fact, says Moore, there are really two, fundamentally separate phases in the development of any high-tech market: an early phase that builds from a few, highly visible, visionary customers; and a mainstream phase, where the buying decisions fall predominantly to pragmatists. Transitioning between these two phases is anything but smooth, and confidently assuming that success in the early market will translate into mainstream success is the fatal error that causes so many high-flying start-ups to crash into the chasm.

Crossing the Chasm grows from Moore's extensive consulting experience at Regis McKenna and at his own firm, working with hundreds of technology ventures struggling with these problems. The transition, he notes, is always perilous: typically, the new venture commits significant resources to modifications promised to secure its initial base of early market customers. The venture requires continued growth to support these commitments, growth into the lucrative mainstream markets. But these markets require a very different approach from that of the early visionaries; and if a company does not attack them properly, it will quickly fall short of projections and find itself in trouble. Moore's book presents specific strategies in marketing and all other areas of the business to help technology companies cross this critical chasm successfully.

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