Secrecy Out Of Date
Don’t I need to be secretive to get an edge over competition?
Too many companies are overly secretive, protecting information that all their customers and competitors already know. What is the advantage of making a product inaccessible to potential customers in fear of losing competitive ideas when anyone who buys it has indeed the right to share what he has seen with others?
Secrecy may have been important, but may have now become an hindrance to effectively marketing and developing any product.
Today major writers submit their book outline to readers to comments, suggest and revise as to create a “perfectly tuned” product that is highly user-centered and which does indeed closely satisfy the requests and needs expressed by its future buyers.
For an up-to-date example please see Dan Gillmore “Please Help Me Make the News”.
I do acknowledge that it can be extremely dangerous to let too many potential competitors know about a new key feature or product being developed. But how much can you do to prevent that information from not spreading?
If you take strong measures in this direction you will also be loosing on the collaboration and exchange potential that may derive from your exposing your product to different potential users.
Indeed, the greatest involvement is provided to customers, partners and other interested parties in the development of a product the more chances there are that critical faults can be identified at early stages and avoided.
If the system is to be used by people, individuals should be used to find out what they want and how they like what you have developed.
See my review of Eedo WebClass inside my Robin Good's Official Guide to SOHO Web Conferencing and Live Presentation Tools, to get an idea of how badly this attitude can fire back to companies still using it.
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