Just like any other term, a business strategy also has varied definitions, but the bottom line is that organization formulate business strategies to derive & defend their competitive position in the market. The ultimate goal is to be the go-to for customers and have a market share.
Strategy, at its essence, is about competing differently—doing what your competitors don’t do or can’t do.
A company’s strategy provides direction and guidance, in terms of not only what the company should do but also what it should not do. Knowing what not to do can be as important as knowing what to do, strategically. At best, making the wrong strategic moves will prove a distraction and a waste of company resources. At worst, it can bring about unintended long-term consequences that put the company’s very survival at risk.
There are coherent array of well-considered choices that organizations make about how to compete.
Here are some of them: [NB: This is to give you guidance on when and why organizations promptly formulate strategies.]
• How to position the company in the marketplace.
• How to attract customers.
• How to compete against rivals.
• How to achieve the company’s performance targets.
• How to capitalize on opportunities to grow the business.
• How to respond to changing economic and market conditions.
In most industries, companies have considerable freedom in choosing the hows of strategy. Some companies strive to achieve lower costs than competitors, while others aim for product superiority or more personalized customer service dimensions that rivals cannot match. Some companies opt for wide product lines, while others concentrate their energies on a narrow product line-up. Some deliberately confine their operations to local or regional markets; others opt to compete nationally, internationally (several countries), or globally (all or most of the major country markets worldwide).
Now, which strategy should you be developing for your business right now?
A business strategy focused on positioning your company in the market (Branding strategy]?
A business strategy focused on attracting and acquiring customers? (Sales Strategy)
A business focused on competing against rivals and responding to market conditions? (Competitive Strategy)
A business strategy focused on leveraging on opportunities to grow your company? (business growth strategy)
A business strategy focused on achieving your performance targets? (operations strategy)
Either way, if you don’t have at least one of those strategies, you are setting your business for failure. To stay in business requires you to strategically plan.
In the next blog post I will share various and common ways you can consider as your next strategies to give you a competitive advantage. We will also share a case study on Starbucks and how they gained their competitive advantage over their rivals in the coffee shop industry.
I hope this creates a starting point for you as a business owner, towards formulating your company’s business strategy.