Here’s the Business Strategy Silicon Valley Giants Use to Disrupt Industries. You Can Use It For Your Business.

By: Daryl Kulak

SERIES: HOW TO BEAT THE SILICON VALLEY GIANTS AT THEIR OWN GAME

In this series, we will show you how you can compete against the Silicon Valley giants and win. They won’t be able to copy you. They won’t be able to catch you.

THE COUNTER-POSITIONING STRATEGY

Counter-positioning is finding part of your competitor’s business model that they cannot do without and flipping the script on them. It was popularized in a book called “7 Powers” by Hamilton Helmer. It is especially effective when you are a smaller and/or newer competitor going up against an established giant.

NETFLIX AND BLOCKBUSTER VIDEO

Here’s one famous example of counter-positioning. Many people know that Netflix is a successful streaming content company that has come to dominate movies and TV worldwide. But you may not know how it all began. The modern myth is that the Netflix founder, Reed Hastings, had rented several movies from Blockbuster video and forgot to return them promptly and, therefore, owed a hefty late fee upon returning them. (This may or may not be true; Reed has changed his story often.) This upset him enough that he decided to start a competing company that charged no late fees — ever. That company became Netflix.

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