Blue Ocean Strategy does not require that you be the best in your business or assume that you have abilities others can’t match. Instead of such an exclusionary stance, BOS claims the opposite:
With the right understanding of target customers and strategy to serve them, anyone can create blue oceans. It is not about being best in every, or even in any one particular criteria, bur rather having the best mix of criteria which leads to unoccupied market space and high growth.
Consider the example of The Da Vinci Code. By May, 2004, in little more than a year since it began, the book went into its 56th printing with 7.35 million books in print, becoming by far the best selling book ever by an unknown author (beating out ‘Bridges of Madison County’, which sold 6 million). The book has maintained its grip on the public’s imagination since, sparking heated debates, TV shows and books about the authenticity of its claims, and originating a new type of cultural tourism. The movie version, starring Tom Hanks, will hit the screens later this year.
So why this unprecedented success? Envious critics rightfully point out that the author, Dan Brown, has very apparent flaws as a writer. His character development is weak and dialogues shallow. So what makes his book the runaway best seller and cultural phenomenon over the works of other, far more talented writers? The answer lies with Mr. Brown’s ability to tap into the psyche of his audience, to offer them an unprecedented blend of attributes. His book collapses and simultaneously fascinates several distinct groups of readers, from mystery seekers to history and religion buffs and art lovers, in the process blurring the boundary between fiction and non-fiction. And in creating a blue ocean, The Da Vince Code not only appeals to numerous existing customer groups, but captures a mass of new customers, thereby significantly expanding the overall market.
--Commentary on Blue Ocean Strategy and Value Innovation by Gabor Burt.