Crossing The Chasm With Category Science: 7 Ways To Use Historical Data To Spot Future Exponential Growth Opportunities
After this, you'll never look at data the same way again.
Dear Friend, Subscriber, and Category Pirate,
In our last mini-book, we explained Category Science 101.
If you notice, we regularly practice the principles of Category Design in our own work.
“Category Science,” for example, is a new category of data science. And a “Category Scientist” is a new category of “data scientist”—a new category of person. And you can’t use old language to describe new ideas. So we must continually practice Category Design in order for us to explore and create new intellectual capital about Category Design. (All Category Designers create new intellectual capital. That’s what a new category is!)
To give you a sense of how we find buried treasure in our own work, here’s a quick synopsis of how we created this new category called Category Science:
Pirate Eddie has built a legendary career learning the ins & outs of data science and management consulting. And over time, he has transmuted that knowledge into net-new Intellectual Capital, inventing his own frameworks and mental models to help companies discover multibillion-dollar category growth opportunities.
As a result, Pirate Eddie formed his own unique POV: Legacy data analysis uses a backward-looking lens to discover insights that prove how the future is going to be a continuation of the past, while Category Science uses a forward-looking lens to discover insights that reveal how the future could be different from the past. (See the chasm between the “old” world and the “NEW world? And see how the POV is the bridge between the two?)
When Pirate Eddie first introduced us to his net-new Intellectual Capital and unique POV, we grabbed our guitars and started jamming with him. Like many people who create breakthrough new Intellectual Capital (IC that leads to an exponential new category like Category Scientist), they don’t realize how powerful their idea is. The more Pirate Cole and Pirate Christopher got to work with Pirate Eddie, the more we could see a) how different Pirate Eddie’s POV is from the legacy world of “data analysis,” b) how valuable this new POV could be, and c) that what had become Obvious to Eddie was radically Non-Obvious to (almost) everyone else.
Then we had an a-ha. Eddie was the rare management strategist who used data to create the future (vs study the past). And that’s when we began to understand that our brother from another mother was a new category of business person. So we did what Category Designers do. We Framed, Named, and Claimed a new category: Category Scientist. And then we wrote and published the first piece on the topic, giving the idea to the world and evangelizing this new POV.
It’s not “better data analysis.” It’s Category Science!
Which means Category Science becomes yet another niche underneath Category Design.
We will continue to evangelize Category Design, and its many connected / adjacent disciplines as long as we are able, transforming more and more legacy marketers, entrepreneurs, executives, investors, writers, artists, and creators into Intellectual Capitalists and Category Designers. (And if we are successful, then it won’t be long before some of those legacy “data analysts” jump ship from the old category and embrace the new—and start calling themselves Category Scientists.)
But this is just the tip of the iceberg.
Let’s keep jamming on the Category Science front—and show you some tangible ways you can use historical data to spot future exponential business growth opportunities.
Crossing The Chasm With Data Science
In 2009, author Geoffrey A. Moore published a breakthrough book called Crossing The Chasm: Marketing and Selling High-Tech Products to Mainstream Customers.
In it, he describes (languages) the “chasm” innovative startups must cross in order to move their products out of the phase of early adoption and into the mainstream market. And he explains why companies that fail to cross this chasm, despite inventing wildly ambitious technologies, fail to achieve a level of adoption and profitability that establishes them as real companies.
We love Crossing The Chasm, and there isn’t a tech executive on planet earth who hasn’t read the book or at least seen the chart with the “chasm” separating the early adopters and later-stage customer segments. Everyone in business knows (or should know) this book, and “Crossing The Chasm” (through a Category Design / Languaging lens) was a brilliant way of reframing, and giving language to, an age-old problem: “Our product is amazing—so why isn’t it taking off?”
Unfortunately (and we can see this with more clarity after publishing our best-selling business book analysis), Crossing The Chasm does a great job of educating the reader on how to think about the problem (it’s clearly a Thinking/Insights book), but it fails to ascend further up the ladder and become an actionable How To guide instructing entrepreneurs and executives on exactly how to solve this problem themselves.
Luckily, Category Science can help!
7 Ways To Use Historical Data To Spot Future Exponential Business Growth Opportunities
Category Design, based on deep Category Science, is the most effective growth strategy in the world. Furthermore, Category Science can stand as the bridge that helps you cross the chasm from innovative new technology to mainstream product and established business.
If you can master the core skills of Category Design and Category Science, it will feel like you have a Superpower that unlocks clarity on how you can:
Be a missionary (not a mercenary)
Focus on finding, understanding, engaging, and leveraging your Superconsumers
Create a POV using Obvious & Non-Obvious insights such that word-of-mouth marketing catches fire.
Deploy the lion’s share of your marketing efforts in Super-Geos such that you create the illusion for your Supers of being “everywhere.” (This creates a word-of-mouth multiplier effect.)
And watch as demand in these Super-Geos increases and your CAC decreases. (do this in enough Super-Geos and you’ll dominate a whole country)
So, here’s how you can use historical data to spot future exponential business growth opportunities and successfully cross the chasm separating you from mainstream success.
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