Nearly all of the members of the Fortune 500 followed a similar plan and model to become the diversified behemoths they are today: “horizontal integration,” adding brands to dominate a category; or “vertical integration,” investing in—and controlling—all stages of the supply chain. But this growth formula has largely run its course and is perhaps even counter-productive, in this age of overabundant options in any product category. What is the new growth strategy for the 21st century?
The answer is functional integration. A new generation of successful marketers is building entire “ecosystems of value” that blur together products and services in ways that deliver greater value to consumers. Each new piece creates an additional node in the ecosystem, further driving up value. Firms like Apple and Nike are combining interrelated products and services—and consumers are responding by purchasing more and more from these single firms.
Unlock, Unleash, and Deliver is a guide for firms to understand and take advantage of this trend to thrive in the 21st century. The book will show how to conceive of new functionally-integrated products and services and delineate their business strategy. It will also show how to approach the development of underlying technology and user interfaces. It will demonstrate how to create brands, bring them to market through advertising and communications, and integrate them back into the broader digital ecosystem of mobile, social media, retail stores and live events. These are all the required pieces for the creation of functionally integrated ecosystems, as well as the future of business—and Unlock, Unleash, and Deliver is required reading for any firm competing in the market today.