Blue Ocean Strategy
By W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne
Imagine two oceans. The first is full of sharks and is colored red with the blood of competitors. This is the existing market space. The second is pristine and blue. This is the unknown market space. Wouldn’t you rather be in a blue ocean than a red one? That’s how blue ocean strategy starts.
Honestly, I found the presentation of the material rather hokey. The authors had a propensity to needlessly invent terminology for their ideas. I found myself on multiple occasions re-reading whole pages just to figure out what they were trying to say. Additionally, parts of it read more like an advertisement for their business than useful advice for yours. All in all the message was good but their execution left something to be desired.
That said, the authors really did have good ideas. The overall goal is help businesses think creatively to break into new market space. This allows a business to not bother with the competition, because there is no competition. The way that the “blue ocean strategy” works is to look at your industry in such a way as to see where the potential for new products/services/etc. would be profitable. It doesn’t have to be a new product. It can be a new presentation (like The Body Shop selling no-nonsense lotions), a new customer base (like Cirque de Soleil appealing to adults rather than children), or a new service (like the cinemas offering childcare on-site in Europe).
When you can determine what is really important for your business, you can focus better on your goals and get everyone on board. There is a lot of good advice on how to look for and attain new market spaces. Many, many examples are used by the authors illustrating what happens when you use (or fail to use) good practices in creating new market space, which made it easier to follow.
I would recommend this book to people who are interested in owning their own business and to current managers of a business.