Blue Ocean Strategic Sequence for Barnes and Noble
Jonathan Jolley, Member
Barnes and Noble while it is not presently in a Blue Ocean environment it is certainly a company that has a history of pursuing such environments and appears to be following the same procedures to achieve Blue Ocean strategy success yet again. In the past it achieved its success by creating bookstores that were a destination, complete with Starbucks coffee bars and comfortable, rather than just a marketplace in which to buy commodities. Next, Barnes and Noble introduced the Nook and recently sold an interest in its business to Microsoft.
The Blue Ocean Strategy Sequencing for Barnes and Noble's nook follows the standard model of utility, pricing, cost, and adoption. It is all fairly straight forward with the Nook:
- The utility is rather obvious it allows users to carry hundreds, if not thousands, of books in the space of a modestly sized paperback. In addition, it creates added functionality by including a dictionary that is linked to the books so that readers can easily see the definitions of words as they read them simply by pressing the word on the screen. Also, the Nook offers the ability download other apps in order to add functionality to the unit.
- The strategic pricing aspect of sequencing is achieved by offering what is essentially a light weight tablet at the price of an e-reader. While it is largely intended as an e-reader and a customer might be reluctant to use the nook for all their computing needs the nook is still capable of offering quite a bit of computing power for its price. Also, Barnes and Noble is able to offer books and magazines at a significantly lower price because the cost of the electronic versions of books and magazines is such much lower than that of the traditional paper versions.
- The cost step of sequencing was covered while discussing the price, the cost of electronic media is significantly lower than the traditional paper media, allowing the company to pass the savings on to the consumer.
- Barnes and Noble had an advantage in the adoption of an electronic e-reader of its competitors.