Start Up Blog

Stripped back

Posted in entrepreneurship by Steve Sammartino on February 25, 2010

If you live in a western urban environs you’ve seen lots of bicycles of the ilk displayed below:

The single speed, fixed gear, mono color racer with white wall tires. Very hip, very now. But why?

It’s classic one downsmanship. In a world where people strive to have more, where increasing wealth has given many of us everything, the trend of tomorrow is diametrically opposed. The more of tomorrow, isn’t stuff, or consumption, rather experience, artistry and simplicity – the luxury of a stripped back existence. We often see these trends early in what may be considered the trivial, like bicycles. The trend will run much deeper than this.

Leading edge urbanites riding such bicycles (they are too cool for me) are showing the world they are more, but publicly displaying they can live with less. It’s a classic display of confidence.  By wanting less, they are showing the world that they are more. Conspicuous consumption has been a preferred method for people displaying self worth for most of the Post world war 2 era. But I really think that this is another example we’ve turned the corner.

The question for entrepreneurs is this: What category or business is waiting to be striped back by you?


12 Responses

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  1. Steve said, on February 26, 2010 at 11:27 am

    Well i just stripped back and redesigned bulk buying with a dash of social media. allows buyers to network and get a better price on products.

    lol after that plug am i allowed to ask for people to vote for us as finalists in the PayPal Developer challenge?

  2. Josh Moore said, on February 26, 2010 at 6:25 pm

    An additional question could be “How can I strip back aspects of my life in order to become more lean and adaptable in life?”

  3. Clare Lancaster said, on February 26, 2010 at 6:35 pm

    Love this.

    I think for a lot of online publishers (bloggers, service providers demonstrating their skills/experience) the question is how can you strip back information overload in your particular industry by filtering the best of the best. Of course what is the “best” is biased but if you build trust – that’s what people want from you.

    You’re stripping back the anxiety of “too much info” and presenting what you know to be useful based on your experience.

    Win. win.

  4. […] Steve Sammartino (in a post I will refer to again) suggests there is a trend for a stripped-back, more simple design experience for products. And web2.0 can often make available the simple entry point to having just the tool for doing just the job we (or our customers or students) want. […]

  5. Ender Baskan said, on March 2, 2010 at 9:18 pm

    Sweet post on key consumer trends amongst innovators.

    Ender (@enderbaskan via twitter)

  6. Luke Hallam said, on March 2, 2010 at 9:20 pm

    Fixies to explain changes in consumer behaviour… Hope it’s correct.

    Luke (@lukehallam via twitter)

  7. Jussi Pasanen said, on March 2, 2010 at 9:23 pm

    A friend recently paid $1,5k or so for a single speed … stripped back inexpensive/affordable

    Jussi (@jopas via twitter)

  8. Trevor Young said, on March 2, 2010 at 9:25 pm

    The trend is experience, artistry and simplicity. Good piece.

    Trevor (@prwarrior via twitter)

  9. Andre Sammartino said, on March 3, 2010 at 9:17 am

    There’s always scope for entrepreneayrs to see such trends and think about the best way to get to such customers. This cross over between “fixies” and mainstream retail is already happening in the US:

    Oh, and another example of a “stripped back” startup: Twitter!

  10. Stripped back 2 | Howard Errey said, on March 4, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    […] had many thoughts about this post  from Steve Sammartino.  Steve makes a case for a stripped back consumer trend.  At first I wanted to argue with the […]

  11. […] bare bikes favoured by trendy urbanites – has been much talked about (e.g. by my cousin here, and me […]

  12. fubarbicycleproducts said, on December 16, 2010 at 5:31 am

    Very Very Cool!

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