Executive Briefings

Create - and Dominate - Product Category if You Want Your Company to Stand Apart from Others

Think different. Apple's Steve Jobs drummed that message into consumers for many years and it was core to the company's identity and its meteoric growth.

Apple was not the bland world of beige desktop PCs (think Microsoft). It was about color and cool, about providing elegantly designed devices that worked seamlessly within a product and service ecosystem (think iPhone and iTunes).

In Play Bigger: How Pirates, Dreamers and Innovators Create and Dominate Markets, Silicon Valley veterans Al Ramadan, Dave Peterson and Christopher Lochhead, along with business journalist Kevin Maney, make the case that business leaders who want to create a powerful, lasting company (or new division of an existing firm) should focus not simply on creating a better product but on creating a product category in which their new product and company will dominate.

Why is this so important? The difference between establishing a category and following can be staggering. Research by the authors shows that companies that define and dominate a category take about 75 percent of the profits and market value. The advantage is so lucrative that venture capitalists are beginning to tailor their investment decisions to focus on identifying such companies.

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Apple was not the bland world of beige desktop PCs (think Microsoft). It was about color and cool, about providing elegantly designed devices that worked seamlessly within a product and service ecosystem (think iPhone and iTunes).

In Play Bigger: How Pirates, Dreamers and Innovators Create and Dominate Markets, Silicon Valley veterans Al Ramadan, Dave Peterson and Christopher Lochhead, along with business journalist Kevin Maney, make the case that business leaders who want to create a powerful, lasting company (or new division of an existing firm) should focus not simply on creating a better product but on creating a product category in which their new product and company will dominate.

Why is this so important? The difference between establishing a category and following can be staggering. Research by the authors shows that companies that define and dominate a category take about 75 percent of the profits and market value. The advantage is so lucrative that venture capitalists are beginning to tailor their investment decisions to focus on identifying such companies.

Read Full Article