Six Ways Out of Business Stagnation

Six Ways Out of Business Stagnation

Blue Ocean Articles, Strategic Models, Strategic Planning
Six ways out of business stagnation. Doesn't sound terribly overwhelming, does it? What most companies need is an underlying core strategy to provide a compass for all tactical implementations. Let's share some of the most common problems contributing to business stagnation. Ivan Dimitrijevic recently posted on Lifehack.com his six reasons for business stagnation. I feel they are a strong list of reasons businesses are struggling. We don't engage our customers. We try to do everything ourselves. We don't use modern tech to its full potential. We don't set ourselves apart from everyone else. We focus on growth at the expense of everything else. We can't handle extra workloads effectively. This is a great list. I include myself in this list because I find I have some history in each of…
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Sports Challenges are Thriving with Blue Ocean Thinking

Sports Challenges are Thriving with Blue Ocean Thinking

Blue Ocean Articles, Six Paths Framework, Strategic Models, Strategic Planning
Sports challenges are thriving with blue ocean thinking. Our culture loves the thought of winning big. Winning big with a half-court throw at a basketball game or a mid-rink puck strike into the net at a hockey game. One of the more popular prizes fantasized about by those who golf is the hole in one prize offered in most golf tournaments. If you've done any golfing and found yourself in a foursome in a local tournament, there is a good chance at some par three hole on the course, there was a car parked close by. The car had a bow on it and the premise was simple. Get a hole in one and the car is yours. Sometimes it's cash, sometimes a vacation, or something else of significant value.…
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Executing Your Strategic Implementation

Executing Your Strategic Implementation

Blue Ocean Articles, Strategic Planning
It's a new year. Many of you are now executing your strategic implementations. It doesn't matter if your initiative is a blue ocean shift or a more traditional red ocean implementation you can take steps to make sure your ideas move forward. The companies that execute are the ones that feature a workforce, stakeholders, and a public that are all on the same page. In the end, companies, whether large or small have to harness the cooperative attitudes and behaviors of all people involved in the company. If you're a small business, this cooperation may come from a spouse or partner. If you're a large business, it may come from your board and employees. No matter what, to successfully implement strategic change, you have to have buy-in. So how to…
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From Exceptional Utility to Getting Your Price Right

From Exceptional Utility to Getting Your Price Right

Blue Ocean Articles, Strategic Planning
Revenue streams are a function of transactions. In most cases, more transactions lead to more revenue. Today, we are going to move from exceptional utility to getting your price right. Getting your price right is a process in blue ocean thinking. We have discussed the sequences around product design in blue ocean terms. We have covered the importance of developing the AS-IS Strategy canvas and distinguishing your offering from that of your competition's. Review these topics if desired here. Reconstructing Boundaries with the Six Paths Framework Focus on the Big Picture and Not the Numbers Finding Markets from Non Customers Implementation of Blue Ocean Strategy  Most companies think that an analysis of competitor pricing is the determining factor in pricing their offering. They fall for the red ocean trap of…
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Don’t Do Your Strategic Plan Until You Do This

Don’t Do Your Strategic Plan Until You Do This

As-Is Strategy, Strategic Models, Strategic Planning
Strategic planning is a must. Most business owners know it. Most small business owners and sole proprietors don't do it well.  Don't do your strategic plan until you do this. What is "this"? Construction of a Blue Ocean Strategy As-Is Strategy Canvas. There is a significant argument to be made for going through the As-Is Strategy Canvas process as prescribed in Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant. This strategic planning book and its later companion Blue Ocean Shift both describe Blue Ocean Strategy case studies and in Blue Ocean Shift, some high-level details on the implementation of blue ocean strategies. W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne, the authors are worthy follows on social media by the way. John P. Kotter states in…
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Blue Ocean Strategy for Solopreneurs: Focus on the Big Picture, Not the Numbers

Blue Ocean Strategy for Solopreneurs: Focus on the Big Picture, Not the Numbers

As-Is Strategy, Blue Ocean Articles, Six Paths Framework, Strategic Planning, To-Be Strategy Canvas
You may recall, the first principle of Blue Ocean Strategy is the reconstruction of market boundaries. Without permission internally, and a process to break your industry boundaries, it will be impossible to move into blue oceans of uncontested market space. In today's post, we learn how important the second principle is in blue ocean strategy for solopreneurs. Focus on the big picture, not the numbers. The temptation when planning is to launch into a business plan or strategic plan and use templates that one finds online or using some process read about when researching a business, marketing, or strategic plan. I have been guilty of the same thing. Before I know it, I've played office and have spent a week mocking up fabulous charts, graphs, marketing and sales projections, and…
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Blue Ocean for Solopreneurs. Reconstruct Boundaries with Path 5 of Six

Blue Ocean for Solopreneurs. Reconstruct Boundaries with Path 5 of Six

Blue Ocean Articles, Six Paths Framework, Strategic Planning
Blue ocean for solopreneurs is a series written to provide a translation of the business best-seller Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant into language more useful for the solopreneur or small business owner. Today in Blue Ocean for Solopreneurs we Reconstruct Boundaries with Path 5 of Six. Path 5: Look Across Functional or Emotional Appeal to Buyers. Companies of all sizes generally default to doing what the competition does. There is generally little thought given to strategic planning that leads to true differentiation of one company's product over another. In most cases, companies will compete on functional price-oriented factors or emotional feeling-oriented factors. These two competitive defaults end up training the entire customer base of entire industries. The cycles of function or…
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Blue Ocean for Solopreneurs. Reconstruct Boundaries with Path 3 of Six.

Blue Ocean for Solopreneurs. Reconstruct Boundaries with Path 3 of Six.

Blue Ocean Articles, Six Paths Framework
In this article, Blue Ocean for Solopreneurs. Reconstruct Boundaries with Path 3 of Six, we break down path 3 of the six paths framework. Path 3: Look Across the Chain of Buyers In most marketing and sales training, you are prompted to develop a buyer persona. The buyer persona will be focused on your opinion or history of who purchases your offering. In the absence of other processes, this a great exercise. Some businesses resist strategic thought about buyer personas. Blue Ocean Strategy invites the participant to broaden the definition of the buyer. As a sole proprietor, small business owner, or division leader, there are more possible definitions of buyer than you may realize. When Joann K, a distiller with a growing spirits brand seeks to sell her products to…
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Create New Value by Answering These Questions (Introductory Offer)

Create New Value by Answering These Questions (Introductory Offer)

Strategic Planning
As a Blue Ocean Strategist,  my role is to help my companies, clients, or projects increase value by asking the right questions. You can start today. Create new value by answering these questions. Aside from price, what are six key factors of competition your company's offering or product faces in the marketplace? Imagine your answer being organized the following way. On a simple table, the left vertical axis would start at the bottom with the word low. The axis would have the word high at the top. This axis represents the perceived value. Low at the bottom, high at the top. The horizontal axis from left to right starts with price. To the right of (price), your answers to the question above are added. It looks like the image to…
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Seven key sampling factors for the spirits and wine industry

Seven key sampling factors for the spirits and wine industry

Strategic Planning, To-Be Strategy Canvas
Over the last couple of years, the team at Shared Spirits asked the following questions. They ended up with seven ways to grow sampling success. Seven ways to grow sampling success didn't happen overnight. Tremendous technology was built. It was ahead of its time according to the Shared Spirits team. They had to ask a lot of questions to uncover the real problems facing the spirits, wine, and beer industry. To a Sales Director of a National Beer Brand: How did your last sampling program work? “Poorly. I spent $140,000 on merch and product for 7 young ladies that didn’t know anything about my brand, my retail or distributor relationships or my customers. I got zero data. It’s a curse.” We asked a craft brand consultant: What is one of…
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