Michael Porter is the darling of most business schools, and rightfully so. Porter is an academic and leader in the subject of business strategy.
In his article, What Is Strategy, Porter offers managers nuggets of gold.
Here are a few insights that marketing managers will find valuable.
1. Porter says strategy is the creation of a unique and valuable position, involving a different set of activities.
2. Strategy is about choosing what not to do—it requires trade-offs.
Deepening a position involves making the company's activities more distinctive, strengthening fit, and communicating the strategy better to those customers who should value it. But many companies succumb to the temptation to chase "easy" growth by adding hot features, products, or services without screening them or adapting them to their strategy.
Porter argues that organizational realities also work against strategy.
“Trade-offs are frightening, and making no choice is sometimes preferred to risking blame for a bad choice. Companies imitate one another in a type of herd behavior, each assuming rivals know something they do not,” he says.
As a marketing manager, don’t be afraid of making trade-offs. And be wary of following the herd out of fear of making a bad choice.
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