what i believe...
Well that's loaded, but I can tell you it's all about branding.
It really all starts with branding... If you're an existing brand, you are in one of three places... 1) Brand Focused 2) Sales Focused or somewhere (unsure) in-between... Long dead are the days of mass marketing... Today's markets are rife with products on top of products. If Apple releases a phone with no earphone plug, in no time there are more than 15 products that can solve your problem. Heck, even Apple is cashing in on it.
When you are focused on the masses, you focus on Sales... but when you're focused on brand (not the logo) then you're more interested in reaching your "audience", and the difference between these two is big!
Once you've defined or, redefined your brand, everything else that comes after that should be primarily aimed at serving your brands purpose. If your current brand strategy is built around a model that focuses primarily on getting as much sales as possible, while the iron (product offering) is hot, then your "brand" won't be long for this world, unless you've made it your primary mission, like Walmart.
Then there's scarcity... Scarcity gives you free rein to enjoy the windfall of opportunity gained through inventions of new, or even simply more optimized experiences. This is "King of the Hill" at it's finest... For, whomever can race to the top the quickest, wins!... at least for a while. See, once the market (or rather marketers) realize there is a real need in that category it will be like a gold rush, with everyone running up the hill to take what you've built.
The ability to keep the king from toppling is engineered into your brands ability to help its customers, and knowing which customer's are the ones that actually want your help. While racing to the top you need to make sure you are properly seeding the brand meaning into everything you touch. What your brand stands for will in time grow roots and keep you stable. The mass market appeal once known, will begin to diminish and only strong, true fans will remain.
The cool and most essential thing to know when being the first to the top is that this is the time to really ask the hard questions, of your brand and your audience. "Make a ruckus early", said Seth Godin. This means, pushing hard at the beginning to ensure you deliver on time... Your audience is prime and ready to tell you what's wrong, because they are excited someone is doing quality work in this niche, so use this time to really get to know them and what they are looking for... and what they're not!
If you are the first to the top you have a captive audience. They can't run off to another prettier, shinier brand, so their full concentration is on you, so your focus should be honed on them. And... the early adopters are the first to jump on board of a first of it's kind product/service offering, and those early adopters are the ones with the greatest feedback because they are the most enthusiastic to get it and also the key influencers to the greater masses.
In the end, branding (done well) is the relatable and comfortable connection between you and your customers... everything that follows should always keep that and them in mind.