Blue Ocean

When they zig, you zag.

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In business, Blue Ocean is a strategic concept that focuses on finding uncontested market space and make competition irrelevant. A great example of a Blue Ocean strategy comes from Nintendo. In the late 90s as the video game industry was becoming more and more competitive, Nintendo, the once leader of the pack began losing to longtime rival Sony Playstation and newcomer Microsoft Xbox. As a result, to regain market share, they started to focus on a different audience that was generally not targeted due to social norms. They shifted their focus from the predominate gaming demographic which includes teenage and young adult males, to women, children, and elderly people with their new Nintendo Wii and fitness sports games. At a price point of 200 dollars per Wii console, it was more targeted towards the less hardcore gamers and focused on those who enjoy short challenges without having to invest in long hours. Additionally, they started the trend of fitness tracking with their Wii Fitness and became vastly successful until other companies like FitBit overtook them. However, the success from Nintendo provides a great example of how existing companies can still find opportunities in a hyper competitive market.

The ability to create demand out of thin air can be only successful if the company delivers on those demands. While other companies tried to make electric cars, Tesla was the only one to succeed because it was able to feed on the demands of the public while delivering something that is appealing. Instead of creating typical sci-fi bulbous ugly cars, Tesla created a super car that was not only fast, but loaded with tech, looks great, and performed better than most supercars for half the cost. Additionally, they released their patents for other car companies to learn while still improving on their products and creating more demand for their new Model 3. Some may argue that the electric car may not be a blue ocean anymore as other car companies have now created their own 100% electric vehicle; however, Tesla is so far ahead that other car companies may not be able to catch up.

The concept of Blue Ocean not only works with companies but also for ourselves. Often, we get caught up trying to fit in with everyone and we lose who are. But what we should do is be ourselves and focus on what makes us unique and different from the crowd. Instead of trying to match the current styles or trends, we should do things that make us happy and comfortable. When not being a mold of society, we become those who molds society.

Author: Nhan Le

By way of Anaheim, CA.

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