Disruption and its Meaning for Communications

Disruption and its Meaning for Communications
Disruption

The term „disruption“ has become one of the top buzzwords of the actual economy. But what is disruption?

Disruption describes a transformation process, which powerfully changes existing business concepts (or even the whole market by a radical innovation) so much that these concepts are driven out of the market. The economist Clayton Christensen developed the theory of disruption in 1997 (“the innovator´s dilemma”): according to the theory even any successful and established company will be threatened by such a revolution which deprives it’s existence.

 

Disruption as creative destruction

The term “disruption” means “to destroy” or “to interrupt”. The economist Joseph Schumpeter already described this changing process with “creative destruction” a half century earlier. However Schumpeter didn´t know the current breath-taking tempo of change.

There are enough examples for disruption in the economy. The transition from vinyl records to CD for example wasn´t a disruptive process. But the development of the iTunes-Store has turned the classical music business upside down. There weren´t streaming services 20 years ago. Today they are part of everyday life.

Nowadays there are taxi companies like Uber, that don´t own one single taxi. Airbnb, provider for holiday apartments, can´t call one apartment his own. The distributor Alibaba has no warehouse.

There haven´t been mobile phones in the past, just landlines. And after the mobile phones the smartphones were quickly on their way. All these processes are disruptive developments, whereby established market participants falling by the wayside and are replaced by insignificant startups.

 

Disruption offers many approaches for communication

Disruption is an interesting process for communication, insofar there´s very much movement at the market and companies have to attract attention.

Because startups with disruptive innovations have something to tell, public relations are a suitable tool to create awareness. Mostly the startups want to attract the top online media by good placements. Firstly because communication more and more takes place online and secondly because publications via online media with backlinks lead to a quickly good positioning of the startup´s website by Google.

 

Content is still king – combined with SEO-PR

SEO-oriented PR or just SEO-PR is a great help to reach this goal. Thereby it is the matter to place crucial keywords in the articles of the publications. But the article will not be written because of the keywords. Important is good content, good storytelling and a nice hook for the story, which creates interest by the media. Content is king. Content remains king.

Furthermore the PR agency needs to have excellent contacts to the media. Many stories have to attract the attention of journalists, online editors and bloggers via verbal communication. Just an online mailing isn´t enough.

 

Connecting SEO-PR with Influencer-PR

Moreover SEO-PR has to be combined with Influencer-PR. You gain much, if you realize the contact between the startup and the right personalities from economy, science and politics. The entire better when you get good usable statements from these personalities, which you can use for the PR.

Also you can perform events for media-effective usage with well-known influencers.

 

Disruptive startups offer PR agencies many approaches

Because startups per se attract attention with their new products and services, it makes sense to perform PR-stunts with them. If you have developed a self-driving car, you should show it around at many places in your country. If it doesn´t work on public streets, then perform them at traffic practice areas or the like. So it is guaranteed that the local and regional press appears at the demonstration date.

Disruption is a buzzword. But behind it are dynamic changes at markets. These changes have to permanently be communicated. It’s a perfect field of activity for PR agencies, which also have understanding of SEO.

An excellent explaining video for disruptive innovation offers the Harvard Business Review.

 

 

Avatar for Uwe Schmidt
Uwe Schmidt ist Vorstand und Mitinhaber der Industrie-Contact AG (IC AG). Seine Schwerpunkte sind die Führung der Agentur, die Geschäftsentwicklung im In- und Ausland sowie die internationale Vernetzung im Public Relations Global Network (PRGN).

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