The following is a list of quotes from my Marketing Principles text book. It comes from chapter 11, "Product Concepts."
The chapter covered five adopter categories in acceptance of new innovations in order of adoption. The first were the Innovators (2.5%), followed by Early Adopters (13.5%), Early Majority (34%), Late Majority (34%), and finally the Laggards (16%). Some of the greatest ideas have always had their skeptics. This list covers just a few of the quotes by closed minded reasoning later trumped by success. Enjoy!
"I think there is a world market for maybe five computers."
- Thomas Watson, chairman of IBM, 1943
"This 'telephone' has too many shortcomings to be seriously considered as a means of communication. The device is inherently of no value to us."
- Western Union internal memo, 1876
"The wireless music box has no imaginable commercial value. Who would pay for a message sent to nobody in particular?"
- David Sarnoff's associates in response to his urgings for investment in the radio in the 1920s
"The concept is interesting and well-formed, but in order to earn better than a 'C,' the idea must be feasible."
- A Yale University management professor in response to Fred Smith's paper proposing reliable overnight delivery service (Smith went on to found Federal Express Corporation)
"Who the hell wants to hear actors talk?"
-H.M. Warner, Warner Brothers, 1927
"A cookie store is a bad idea. Besides, the market research reports say America likes crispy cookies, not soft and chewy cookies like you make."
- Banker's response to Debbie Fields' idea of starting Mrs. Fields' Cookies
"We don't like their sound, and guitar music is on the way out."
- Decca Recording Company rejecting the Beatles, 1962