HKSTP Seminar named “Marketing Strategy through Transient Advantage (瞬時競爭優勢)” was hold on 1 Jun 2017. The guest speaker was Dr. Jeffrey Hui (Founder and Principal, Dr. Phoenix Education; Chairperson of Hong Kong Institute of Marketing (HKIM)). He said the term Transient Advantage was from an article of Harvard Business Review.
In the beginning, he introduced three great marketing gurus and they were Prof. Andrew Chan (HK), Prof. KC Mun (China) and Prof. Philip Kotler (The Father of Marketing) (USA). Dr. Jeffrey Hui had studied from them before.
Firstly, Dr. Hui introduced a book named “Your Strategy Needs A Strategy” and then he briefed the diagram which separated into four parts by Malleability and Unpredictability. He told us Classical marketing strategy like SWOT & BCG Matrix may not be useful in internet world. Adaptive needs “Be Fast” for small company and Visionary needs “Be First” for startup with huge funding. Shaping like Apple or Google that not everyone can do that. Renewal (expanded by author) means “Be Viable” especially in poor economic. Dr. Hui called it “The 4+1 Strategy Sets Matrix”. For startup, Adaptive, Visionary and Renewal strategies are more suitable.
Then Dr. Hui quoted Michael E. Porter statement that “Competitive advantage is at the heart of a firm’s performance in competitive markets”. He compared the Competitive Advantage (CA) and Core Competence (CC).
After that he explained the differentiation and cost advantage sources and commented two points from Porter’s CA that were Growth and Profitability. But now we did not own resource but access resource (e.g. Uber, Airbnb). Many disrupters appeared and competed with you.
Finally, he pointed out the following two old thinking were no long worked.
i) Industries are stable and five-year plans allow for good ROI by investing in analytical capabilities to spot industry trends and base strategy.
ii) All that is needed to optimize systems and processes around sustainable advantage.
He quoted Prof. Rita Gunther McGrath’s Transient Advantage. She said Advantage last only for a short time, impermanent. In the article “The End of Competitive Advantage” pointed out (Competitive) Advantage is transient, not sustainable. There are two main ideas below.
i) Companies in high-velocity industries must learn to cycle rapidly through the stages of competitive advantage. They also need the capacity to develop and manage a pipeline of initiatives, since many will be short-lived.ii) Mind-shift: All comparative advantages are temporary; no longer any sustainable competitive advantages.
Lastly, Dr. Hui concluded six key driving forces and explained as follows:
i) Digital Revolution
ii) A “FLAT” World
iv) Fewer Barriers to Entry
v) Disruptive Technology / Innovationsvi) Ever-demanding Customer Needs
At the end, Dr. Hui used I Ching to conclude that “Overtime, the only constant unchanged is CHANGE”. He asked us to think about Arenas (戰區), Not Industries and quoted Rita McGrath (2013) statement “… to stop thinking of within-industry competition as the most significant competitive threat. … We are seeing industries competing with other industries, business models competing with business models even in the same industry, and entirely new categories emerging out of whole cloth.”
HKSTP - http://www.hkstp.orgTransient Advantage – HBR - https://hbr.org/2013/06/transient-advantage