10 Strategies to Topple the Goliath in Your Industry
By Stephen Denny
(Portfolio Hardcover, Hardcover, 9781591843832, 256pp.)
Publication Date: March 31, 2011
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Everyone thought Eric Ryan and Adam Lowry were crazy to start Method, a new cleaning products company. The category had long been dominated by P&G, Unilever, and Colgate-Palmolive. Those giants had so much clout with the retail chains that their soaps had barely needed updating for decades. But by taking advantage of its underdog position, Method carved out a very profitable niche: environmentally sound products in stylish, innovative packaging. Despite having a far smaller marketing budget than their competitors, Method connected with a substantial minority of people who wanted to "buy green" but who also wanted high-quality products.
Marketing expert Stephen Denny argues that, like Method, any brand can directly challenge the giant of its category and not only survive, but thrive. While it's inconvenient to be the little guy, it can also be a blessing in disguise. Giant- killers can afford to shake things up and take bold steps. They can be faster and nimbler than giants who are too slow and hidebound to make the painful but necessary changes to stay competitive. By the time they notice that slingshot, they're already keeling over.
During his two decades in the trenches, Denny has taken on quite a few giants. And he has interviewed more than seventy other giant-killers across industries- from software to cosmetics to aviation-for their most powerful techniques.
Our need to work smarter, with fewer resources, isn't dependent on the state of the economy or on any sense of stability you think you have in your industry. Denny's ten powerful strategies will help you overcome stale business thinking and bureaucracy. They include:
? Win in the last three feet. Leverage someone else's investment-just be there the moment the customer grabs their wallet.
? Create "thin ice" arguments. Shift the conversation to places where the competition can't-or won't-go.
? Fight unfairly. Learn how the underdog can turn the tables.
From the hypercompetitive world of social media to high-stakes business-to- business sales to the trenches of retail, Killing Giants is The Art of War for a new era. It proves that size does matter-the size of the fight in the dog.
"Killing Giants is an essential manual for any company with a habit of fighting above its weight class. If you want to take on the big boys and win, this is required reading."
-Michael Port, author of Book Yourself Solid and The Think Big Manifesto
"For Method, taking on Big Soap means moving fast, fighting dirty, and changing the game by flipping the giants' strengths against them. Now you have the playbook."
-Eric Ryan, cofounder of Method
"A mind-clearing book for startup entrepreneurs, cash-strapped strategists, and other Davids armed only with their wits."
-Marty Neumeier, author of Zag
"This book reconfirms, through insightful and diverse stories, what I've always believed: We are most creative under the greatest constraints."
-Karim Rashid, designer, author of KarimSpace and Design Your Self
"Size and scale are not the only formula for success. With examples from around the world, Denny outlines powerful strategies that you can use to overtake larger competitors in any business and marketplace."
-David Meerman Scott, author of The New Rules of Marketing & PR and Real-Time Marketing & PR
"Chock-full of provocative marketing strategies, this book might just give you the stones to take out the Goliath in your industry."
-Roger von Oech, author of A Whack on the Side of the Head and The Creative Whack Pack
"Learn why quick and dirty is better than shock and awe in this timely book."
-Guy Kawasaki, author of Enchantment and cofounder of Alltop
"Killing Giants recounts the tales of successful entrepreneurs who started from scratch, became scrappy and innovative, and learned how to compete successfully in an arena of giants. The information here is practical, valuable, and actionable."
-Jim Koch, founder and brewer, The Boston Beer Company, maker of Samuel Adams