The Impossible AdvantageWinning the Competitive Game by Changing the Rules
Conventional business strategies tell you that differentiation, the right positioning, and defining your superior edge will turn you into the ‘best player’ in your market – but this is wrong. The Impossible Advantage reveals that success can be achieved by changing the market in which you operate, rather than trying to beat the competition. The authors illustrate that the biggest, most spectacular and groundbreaking business success stories feature companies that make the rules – instead of just following them. The best companies seem to know how to break, change, or reinvent the rules of the market that everyone else follows. This book: Will help you to break through to an entirely new level of thinking: winning the game by changing the rules in your own favour. Explains that you don’t need a technological breakthrough, product innovation or a massive marketing budget to change the rules of the competition. Shows you that you can become a ?game changer? and gain a seemingly ‘impossible’ advantage even over far larger competitors, no matter how large your market or how small your segment is. Introduces you to four compelling ‘Game Changing Strategies’ that work for managers from any industry or business sector. For more information on The Impossible Advantage, go to the official website: http://www.impossible-advantage.com
About the Authors. Foreword. THE SURPRISING LIMITATION OF THE WORLD’S NUMBER ONE BUSINESS STRATEGY. Why There Are Limits to the Power of Positioning. The Rule Maker's 'Impossible' Advantage. Game Changing Strategies Start Where Positioning Stops. Six Prejudices to Ignore. IT'S TIME TO THINK RADICALLY ABOUT GROWTH. Someone Committed to Breaking All the Rules. Games as a Strategic Model. Four Classical Game Strategies. Wanted: A 'Highly Infectious' Game Changing Idea. Our Plea for Free, Open and Radical Thinking. FIRST GAME STRATEGY: REDEFINING THE MEASURES OF PERFORMANCE. Influence the Criteria of the 'Customer Jury'. How to Make Stronger Opponents Play Your Game. Attack on an 'Invincible' Market Leader. Surprising Escape from a Price War. How Global Power Players Rule the Game. The Essentials in Overview. SECOND GAME STRATEGY: RESHAPING THE MARKET LANDSCAPE. How Market Structures 'Regulate' the Competitive Game. Balancing Act Between Flop and Global Success. Outfoxing a Negative Trend in the Market. How to Conquer 'Impossible' Market Potential. The Law of the Self-Fulfilling Prophecy. Change the World with a Radical Idea. The Essentials in Overview. THIRD GAME STRATEGY: RESTAGING THE COMPETITIVE CONFRONTATION. What are 'Game Patterns' and How Can You Use Them? 'Staging' the Competitive Confrontation – Hollywood-Style. Lessons Learned from Political Campaigns. Breaking Free from a Negative Role Pattern. Moving out of the Shadows into the Limelight. Turning the Tide of an Almost-Lost Battle. The Essentials in Overview. FOURTH GAME STRATEGY: TAKING THE GAME TO THE NEXT LEVEL. Taking the Game to the Next Level . . . What Does That Mean? Old 'Top Dogs' Can Become Terribly Short Sighted . . . . Why It Takes so Little to Control a Category's Evolution! Courageously Slay the Sacred Cows! Take the Lead When a Value Shift Hits the Market. When the Market Needs a Complete Overhaul. Radical Visions and Their Pitfalls. The Essentials in Overview. HOW YOUR BUSINESS CAN PROFIT FROM GAME STRATEGY. 1. Explore the 'Ideas that Rule the Market'. 2. Nothing Can Beat a 'Game Changing Idea'. 3. Game Changers Can Take a Certain Degree of Control in the Market – and over Their Competitors. 4. Game Strategy as a 'Behavior Changing' Instrument. 5. Finally . . . Game Strategy Is a Truly 'Democratic' Tool. The Five Steps to Game Strategy. It's Time to Explore Your Own Game Changing Opportunities. AFTER THE GAME. POSTSCRIPT: HOW GAME STRATEGY DIFFERS FROM GAME THEORY. THANKS! Index.
Andreas Buchholz, Wolfram Wördemann and Ned Wiley all began their professional careers at Procter & Gamble, where they occupied executive positions in marketing. Buchholz and Wördemann are management consultants for the development of 'topline' growth strategies, and have published numerous articles in the professional press, including the Harvard Business Manager. Wiley is the managing director of a new media operation of the Axel Springer group.
The competition in the marketplace is a game, no doubt, much like any other game… except for one small, but most significant difference: in the market, some of the players are also the rule makers. From a classic game perspective, these rule makers or Game Changers enjoy nothing less than an ‘impossible advantage’ over the vast majority of their competitors who are happy to simply play along by the rules. Few managers truly understand the fine art of how to control the intangible and somehow enigmatic ‘laws and rules’ of the competition in the marketplace. And hardly anybody knows about the compelling and proven techniques of how to purposefully change them in their own favour. ‘The Impossible Advantage’ reveals some surprising news: how virtually anybody can learn the art of the Game Masters and Game Changers. There are no demanding prerequisites: just get ready to engage in a mind-opening and provocatively different way of thinking.
Just about any business strategy tells you how to become a better or even one of the 'best players' in your market – through innovation, quality or price leadership, differentiation or positioning. The Impossible Advantage takes you straight to an entirely different level of thinking: How to win the competition by Changing the Rules of the Game in your own favour. Make your competitors play your game and follow your rules! 'Impossible for us!' is what 8 out of 10 managers firmly believe. But does it really take a market leader to 'rule' the competition? Or a major technological breakthrough? Or even a massive new product campaign? – No, not necessarily! This book delivers stunning evidence that virtually any player in the marketplace – and you too! – can emerge as a Game Changer and gain an ‘impossible’ advantage over competition. Find out how to disarm seemingly invincible market leaders, how to transform prevailing power relationships, how to mastermind a paradigm shift in your market environment. All you need is something anybody can come up with, namely, a Game Changing Idea! The Impossible Advantage introduces you to four compelling 'Game Changing Strategies' that work for managers in any industry or business sector, B-to-B or B-to-C, even in the political arena or in major legal cases. These strategies are as relevant to modern lifestyle categories as they are to conservative or traditional ones, no matter how big your market or how small your segment may be. Explore the fascinating case studies and start taking a refreshingly different look at your market, your competitors and your growth opportunities. "After founding RTL -- the first private TV channel in Germany-- in a garage, it took us eight years to dethrone the two giant public channels, and become market leader. When we started, our perspectives were modes and our budgets were tight. But then we came up with that Game Changing Idea which then turned the market dramatically in our favour. Read this book and find out how to make The Impossible Advantage work for your business, too." —Helmut Thoma, Founder of RTL, Germany's Number-One TV station "Changing the rules of the game always works to the advantage of the one who takes the initiative. The Impossible Advantage abundantly proves this and what's more gives some good recipes for success. A must-read for all marketing and advertising people. Particularly in these challenging times." —Maurice Levy, Chairman & CEO, Publicis Groupe "Most surprising about the ideas in The Impossible Advantage is that they haven't been widely spread among business and management schools for years." —John C. Kornblum, Former US Ambassador and Chairman of Lazard Germany
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