Entrenched Player’s Dilemma

Some background… The line was uttered in a description of David Sarnoff, who was the president of RCA/NBC. At first, Sarnoff wanted the airwaves to be free of advertising and profit primarily from the sale of radios. After the company suffered because of the Great Depression, Sarnoff was forced to put ads on the airwaves and his company grew tremendously as a result.

Anyway, the line is this: “Once you’re good at connecting consumers with advertisers, it’s hard to be good at anything else.”–Get Excited

Ricky, it’s called the Entrenched Player’s Dilemma.

Wikinomics had a fairly good description:

“The problem with mature companies is that the very commercial success of their products increases their dependency on them. Making radical changes in the product’s capabilities, underlying architecture or associated business models could cannibalize sales or lead to costly realignments of strategy and business infrastructure. It’s as though popular and widely adopted products become ossified, hardened by the inherent incentives to build on their own success. The result is that entrenched industry players are generally not motivated to develop or deploy disruptive technologies.”

I know you know Tucker but we haven’t met. The stunt you guys pulled during your SXSW panel was the only time I laughed the entire conference besides from sadness and despair.

Written by Ryan Holiday
Ryan Holiday is the bestselling author of Trust Me, I’m Lying, The Obstacle Is The Way, Ego Is The Enemy, and other books about marketing, culture, and the human condition. His work has been translated into thirty languages and has appeared everywhere from the Columbia Journalism Review to Fast Company. His company, Brass Check, has advised companies such as Google, TASER, and Complex, as well as Grammy Award winning musicians and some of the biggest authors in the world. He lives in Austin, Texas.