On acting local – the Morocco case


Image courtesy: wilbertbaan

Working on the right thing is probably more important than working hard. 

Caterina Fake, co-founder, flickr

The world has become a small village. Any product or service you’d like to launch will be subject to the competition, maybe coming from a small village in China! If you’re working on a research, there is at least another team out there working on relatively the same subject. Everything you do has become measured against a far too large scale called “the Globe”.

Why am I bringing this up? I’ve been thinking a lot lately about finally concretizing some ideas of mine. The first issue was obviously answering the question: What makes my ideas better than what is out there? 

I think it comes down to this:

– Your idea is innovative enough to race against the world. This would normally necessitate resources, continuous innovation and full-time attention.


– Your idea takes into account your particular context. This makes your idea unique enough to have a chance to succeed locally, and it can be more than enough at times.

So you have a choice, come out with an amazingly innovative idea and go Global Or focus on your particular context and go Local. 

Due to the limited resources, most of the aspiring serial-entrepreneurs like myself would go for the second option. So I started decorticating my context considering the techy aspect of these ideas. If you're also thinking about launching a small (IT, ecommerce, web…) project in the Moroccan context, you might want to consider these points as well.

– Morocco is a widely Arab speaking country. But Arab content on the net is still scarce relatively to the number of Internet users and compared to other languages. One can see this as an opportunity rather than a hindrance. 

– The main use of Internet is in French or English. A multi-language service/product would be a good idea.

– The main users of Internet are under 30. Facebook is their platform of choice. Maybe you'd want to start there?

– There is also a huge lack of user-friendly contextualized websites that could help students and young workers leverage their knowledge and share their experiences…

– Which brings me to communities of practice. r-a-r-e!

– The average user would more consume than produce a content of quality. It would enable adoption if the product or service demands less from the user than it offers. 

– Many new technologies haven’t gone mainstream here yet. Lots of virgin fields are just waiting for qualified resources to jump in.

– Mobile apps’ use is still embryonic.  Apps such as foursquare haven’t reached the adoption threshold. And there is a huge need for apps that can meet everyday needs of Moroccan citizens.

– Personalization is trendy. More and more people think their belongings should reflect their personalities. I know a lot who would pay more to get unique pieces or to be offered personalized services. Maybe the product you're trying to e-sell should consider this as well…

– There are few product/services that reflect the true Moroccan identity. A niche to jump on?

These are mainly the aspects I could come out with. Can you think of anything that would make the Moroccan entrepreneurial context unique? I'm all ears.

To be continued…

Lamia Ben