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Strategic choice and evaluation paper: Barnes and Nobles - Essay Example

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Strategic choice and evaluation paper: Barnes and Nobles

Barnes and Nobles is a great company that has enjoyed tremendous success in the book industry. The firm as of 2010 was the market leader in the industry with over $7 billion in revenues in an industry that generates approximately $24 billion in revenues each year. Despite the success of the company the firm has to realize that the book industry is in decline. In 2009 book sales went down 1.9% and during the last few years a lot of book stores have gone out of business including the popular book selling chain Borders. Barnes and Nobles has a lot of good things going for the company including a variety of over 2 billion books and e-books. The firm has done a good job of combining the traditional physical book store operation with its online offering. The firm also had the foresight to diversify into other product lines including toys, video games, and movies. Despite the good things the company has going for itself it is imperative for the managers of the company to implement a new strategy to ensure the long term success of the company. The firm has to consider all strategic options including value disciplines, generic strategies, and grand strategies in order to find the optimal solution for the company. Valued Discipline The three main value disciplines available to marketers are operational excellence, customer intimacy, and product leadership. The operation excellence strategy entails improving the operation of the company in order to achieve world class results. This strategy is better suited for implementation for companies in the manufacturing sector. A company that achieved tremendous results using operation excellence is the Japanese auto maker Toyota. The use of operation excellence allowed Toyota to become the market leader in its industry. Barnes and Nobles on the other hand runs a bookstore. There are simply not too many things that Barnes and Nobles can do to improve the efficiency of its 1341 bookstore network. A potential solution associated with the operational excellence for Barnes and Nobles is to improve the quality of customer service the company offers. This can be achieved by investing money in training and development for all its employees. Due to the dispersion of employees it would be hard for the company to organize training and development efforts for all its employees at once. A potential solution to implement this strategy is for the firm to develop an online customer serving training seminar. The firm could offer a cash incentive for the employees so that the employees can complete the online customer service training during their own time. The use of the value discipline of customer intimacy may also not be suited for Barnes and Nobles. When a person walks into a bookstore the last thing they want is to get hassle by an employee trying to push a sale on them. Book readers take their time evaluating a book prior to making a purchase. As far as product leadership the firm already has in place a strategy to offer its customers the greatest variety of book titles selection. Barnes and Nobles has the highest selection of books and e-books in the world. Being the company with the greatest product selection should not prohibit the company from looking for ways to improve their product offering. Some ideas on how to improve the product offering of the company will be further discussed in the grand strategy segment of this term paper. Generic Strategy Generic strategies are often used by managers to improve a business operation. The three types of generic strategies are cost leaderships, differentiation, and focus (Kotler, 2002). The cost leadership strategy is achieved when a company is able to lower its structure more than the competition therefore being able to offer its customers lower prices than the competition. A firm that achieved tremendous success implementing this generic strategy is Wal-Mart Corporation. Unfortunately the low cost leadership s ...Show more

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Barnes and Nobles is a great company that has enjoyed tremendous success in the book industry. The firm as of 2010 was the market leader in the industry with over $7 billion in revenues in an industry that generates approximately $24 billion in revenues each year…
Author : brendanstiedema
Strategic choice and evaluation paper: Barnes and Nobles essay example
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