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Getting to know business frameworks

There are hundreds of models and frameworks to help develop our business strategies. For example some models cover overall strategy - examples being SWOT, Porter's Five Forces, and PEST. Then there are models that help find a competitive edge such as Porter’s Four Corners, Porter’s Generic Strategies and USP analysis. Some models are focused on marketing strategies, such as customer journey mapping, Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, Roger's Diffusion Curve and the 4Ps. We should be familiar with all these different models as they each play to their strengths. Successful business models have a simplicity about them. Once someone is introduced to the model, it makes perfect sense. It is a formula that explains a situation. It is a toolkit for the user. Often the model includes templates which, once completed, clarify the subject. The models eventually become a shorthand which makes it easy to have a conversation with colleagues. We refer to “our USP” and everyone knows it is our unique selling proposition – the thing that distinguishes us from the competition. Useful as they are, business models should not be regarded as the Holy Grail. Just as we can get tired of the use of Smart Art in PowerPoint, we should be careful not to use models as cookie cutters. They are there to be adapted. Each chapter contains a note on the development of the models and how they have changed. Indeed, you are encouraged to think of your own model. And, of course, we would love you to buy our book on the subject.

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