Imitation Is Not A Strategy

We spend so much time thinking about, talking about, fretting about the fast follower, particularly the big company who sees what the little guy is doing and then knocks it off.  The theory is that many of the new companies that have been started in the past couple years are subject to this risk.

Umair weighs in on this debate with the observation that imitation is not a strategy and he levels his criticism squarely at Yahoo!

I am not going to get into who is an innovator and who is a copycat.  I will leave that to others to discuss. 

But this is an important point that we should all get our heads around.

Is imitation a strategy and does it put the innovators at risk?

Historically, I’d say that is the case.

What’s different now?  I am not sure.

But Umair’s a smart guy and when he says it ain’t gonna work this time around, I pay attention to that.