Blue Ocean strategy for Management

For my final blog I thought I would relate my field of study, Management, with a relatively entrepreneurial strategy in marketing, called the Blue Ocean Strategy, developed by Professor W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne. I have tried to source  peer reviewed content from those that have  studied this theory and related it back to strategic management, but I have not been able to find the relevant information, so here is my attempt at mapping it out myself.

The Blue Ocean strategy in marketing is designed to create uncontested markets for companies explains Swan (2014) as he navigates through the theory that has formed this strategy. The four action framework is designed to support a marketing strategy that ultimately positions the business or product into the Blue Ocean, from the Red Ocean.

Red Ocean v Blue Ocean.JPG

Image source: Kim, C. and Mauborgne, R. (2016).

Now as you can see competing in the Blue Ocean looks far more attractive, but it is much harder to create a new market than it is to compete in an existing market, however the rewards are much more sustainable. The same can be said about strategic management, change in management mentality. Is. Hard. But the rewards are much more sustainable. How can this strategy apply to Management? Consider this, can you seriously relate the top five traits listed below with your current manager or management team? If you have answered yes to at least three traits, you have a pretty good boss, just saying.

The top 5 traits of an effective leader for consecutive years are

Top 5.JPG

(Filipkowski & Donlon, 2014)

If you can effectively build a strategy around these traits you will ultimately set yourself apart from the competition and make them irrelevant.


Fig 1. Comparison of the Blue Ocean strategy applied to Marketing and how it might apply to Management & Strategy

Marketing v Management.JPG



Blue Ocean strategy is a framework for developing Marketing goals and Objectives (Ferrell and Hartline, 2014). It is designed to challenges traditional assumptions about marketing strategy, so in retrospect it can also be the fundamental objective for a strategic manager, to challenge traditional assumptions about management and strategy. As a marketing tool the use of this framework is to support a marketing strategy (Chaffey & Ellis-Chadwick, 2016, p. 178), whereas the management framework would support a business strategy through effective leadership.


Chaffey, D. and Ellis-Chadwick, F. (2016). Digital Marketing: Strategy, implementation and practice. Edinburgh Gate: Pearson Education Limited

Ferrell, O. and Hartline, M. (2014). Marketing strategy. Mason, OH: South-Western/Cengage Learning.

Filipkowski, J. and Donlon, J. (2014). Top 10 Skills Needed for Effective Leadership | Chief Executive Magazine. Chief Executive Magazine. Retrieved September 10 from:

Kim, C. and Mauborgne, R. (2016). Four Actions Framework | Blue Ocean Strategy Tools and Frameworks. Blue Ocean Strategy. Retrieved September 10 from:

Swan, S. (2014). Applying Blue Ocean Strategy to digital marketing – Smart Insights Digital Marketing Advice. Smart Insights. Retrieved September 10 from:


14 thoughts on “Blue Ocean strategy for Management

  1. Not a bad read at all.

    You said “If you can effectively build a strategy around these traits you will ultimately set yourself apart from the competition and make them irrelevant”, as a good marketer, shouldn’t the traits you mentioned already be apart of the strategy? I like the way you have compared the two and put them together, but to me it feels like those traits should just appear in the strategy naturally.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Fair point, and when I came across this strategy (in marketing) I instantly thought this could support a business process. But as I further investigated I quickly learned that it is a difficult strategy to implement, and from that I assumed it would be difficult to implement in management , hence only ‘few’ operate in the Blue Ocean. With management the ones that really stick out for me personally are those that are natual leaders, but i don’t think it is naturally formed, more so developed. I am always extremely relieved when I finish a difficult project at work, or even an essay or exam, but it’s not because it is done but because it was uncomfortable, being uncomfortable certainly brings out the best in me. So to answer your question, yes I agree and a good marketer with those traits in their strategy will certainly be successful, my point was that like in marketing only few compete in the Blue Ocean.
      Appreciate the comment as it has made me further reflect on what I was trying to achieve.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s a really intresting take on the blue ocean strategy. I chose the same topic for my last blog as well. It’s by far the most interesting strategy I’ve come across in marketing.

        Would love to hear your thoughts on my blog, it can be found at http//


  2. This was a really intriguing post to finish on. The framework behind the Blue Ocean Strategy is elegant in its ideology – but you are completely right: by comparison, the difficulty of creating a market rather than just entering an existing one could easily been as hard (if not more). Overall, an awesome and polished blog – great job 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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