What is Strategy? Why The Strategy is Important? 1 Mart 2019, Cuma

In business life, the strategy has an important place in the success of the brands. Why the strategy is important? Behind the successful brands, there is the strategies and the meticulous application of these.  
The strategy is indeed a war term. It comes from the Greek word, strategia. The word of strategia comes to the meaning of general in Greek.
As the result of the increase in the business life, and the conditions’ getting difficult, pitched battles are being lived between the brands in its fullest sense. And this case reveals the importance of the word of strategy. The strategies of the brands influence their lifetimes seriously. It states a vital importance for the brands. Well then, what is the reason for this importance?
Why the strategy is important?
It leads the way

The strategy leads the way. It is a guide which shows the way to go and how to get from this way. In difficult situations, it lightens the way in front of you. It is a trustworthy harbour in days when everybody is making mistakes and the false is mixed to the correct.
Why the strategy is important? It helps the illumination of the dark points concerning the future. This provides making fewer mistakes. 

It removes uncertainties

One of the most important issues concerning the business life, is the uncertainty. So many brands do not know where to go and how to reach there. 
“Where are we going? What should we do?” are the questions which the employees ask most. When they get the answers of these questions, their views become clearer. Then the uncertainty in their minds shall be removed.  They work more comfortably.
Why the strategy is important? The uncertainty is one of the most important reasons of the stress. A good strategy decreases the stress of both the administrators and the employers. The question marks in their minds decrease. They start to look at the future more confidently. 
It differentiates

Recently, we’ve followed up the bankrupts of great brands as drawing lesson from them. One of the main reasons for these bankruptcy is to not being able to differentiate. They’ve lost for not being able to elude from their rivals. They’ve tried to proceed by doing the things which everybody do. As they couldn’t form a difference, they fall behind. 
Why the strategy is important? One of the most important advantages of the strategy is its ability to differentiate. Due to the strategy, you shall possess a road map and a thought system which are peculiar to you. Because there is no de facto strategy which can be applied for everybody.
The strategy of each brand is different from each other like the DNA of that brand. Namely, the strategy is special to the brand. And this helps the brand to elude from its rivals, to gain a ground which is peculiar to itself. And because of its eluding from its rivals and differentiating, it constitutes a preference reason for the customers. It means that it has taken its first step towards permanence. 

It adds value

Strategy is one of the most important powers of a brand. It is a factor which adds power and value to the brand. It individuates the brand. It provides the brand to come to a different position. Idea lies at the bottom of the strategy. 
Why the strategy is important? When good ideas combine with strong strategies, they carry the brand to a special place in the eye of the customer. The brand gains a meaning and its importance for the consumers increases as well. (About branding, you can read the article of “branding is flapping wings towards whiteness.”) 
It increases the productivity

The strategy contributes to the increasing of the productivity. You can know where to go and how to go by means of strategy. By this way, you shall not waste your time, you shall reach your target more rapidly. 
Why the strategy is important? As the strategy removes the uncertainty, it is used more efficiently. Taking action gets easier. The missing points shall emerge more clearly. The brand gains momentum. It spends less endeavour. And finally, it gains more.  This helps the profitability and the productivity as well.
Strategy is one of the most important concepts for the business life. As the brands put this subject on the agenda, as they make it one of the real agenda articles, they gain more power. They shall come to better places, and become more prominent. Of course, an important point should not be omitted. If the strategy comes out of the hands of correct people and applied by competent people, it provides success. Otherwise, failure becomes inevitable.
If you’ve liked our article, we recommend you the article of “What kind of features a good strategist must have?”

 What can the brands learn from Sun Tzu on the subject of strategy?
Sun Tzu* comes to the meaning of Master Sun. Sun Tzu is a Chinese general and military strategist. The things he said about the war strategies, are important information on the subject of war which have reached to our day. Let us see which interpretations we can get for the business life.   
1.“Success at war, starts with solving the aim of the enemy.”
In business life, if you want your strategy to be successful, primarily you have to know your rival well. Knowing your rival better than him is the basis of the good strategy. If you know him, perceive his targets, you shall increase your winning probability. 
2.“The winner of the war is the one who can evaluate his situation before combating.”
Strategy is the art of removing the uncertainty and increasing the productivity. When you examine the successful companies, you’ll see that they do not make spurts continuously, they use their energies productively. In business life, the companies go bankrupt while they are growing. Uncontrolled growth, unpredicted dangers may bring the end of the companies. The company whose strategy is strong, is the one which can use its resources productively.  
3.“The real victory is the one which is won without fighting.”
 In the business life, winning without fighting, is possible by invalidating the rivalry. For this, you have to form your blue ocean. If you develop a correct strategy, form your market by yourself, you can pass to the upper stage and can win without fighting. (If you ask how could we do this, you may take a glance to our article of “Blue Ocean Strategy.”)

4.“A clever warrior is the one who can select the right men and energy effectively.” There is the team work in the bottom of the successful strategies in business life. A good strategist is the one who can select his shareholders correctly and interlock them around a mutual aim. The strategy may seem so good on the paper but if the shareholders are wrong, it means that your losing is so near. 

5.“Every victory cannot be succeeded with the same tactic.”
The business life is undergoing an incredible change and transformation especially in the last 20 years. We’re seeing that the giant companies of the 20 years ago fall behind, new giants are coming to exist. The reason for this, is the continuous changing of the conditions and medium in its essence. The companies which cannot read the change of the world correctly, continue doin the same things. But they cannot obtain the same results. There is a saying which is quite valid in the business life. “The thing which bring you here, shall not bring you to another place.”  
6.“The neighbour whose intention is unknown, may be the greatest enemy.”
When you look at the Nokia example, Apple was not a rival for them but a neighbour whose intention was unknown.  Nokia paid a heavy price for not knowing the intention and targets of its neighbour. A company which it did not put into the category of rival, dominating its detail, brought the end of it with its smart telephone spurt.  
7.“Let your plan be dark as night, your motion be rapid like a thunderbolt.”
 The companies which win great success in business life, are the companies which make innovations. The plans and the strategies of the companies which make innovations, cannot be known generally beforehand. If you remember the good days of Apple, the innovations were kept as secret and created a shock effect like a thunderbolt in the launchings.
By this means, Apple got ahead of its rivals, made important innovations. When the thing which it would do become clear, the plans came to light. Their launchings could not create a thunderbolt effect. That time, it started to lose its old power. (If this subject has attracted your attention, you can look at our article of “Why Apple is losing power?”) 

Do not fall in love with your strategy
Strategy is one of the key concepts for the brand. For this reason, we use it frequently. We add it to the beginning or ending of our department names. 
As saying the marketing strategy, we feel ourselves better. We prepare showy excel tables.  We create visual feasts in power point presentations. We make long strategy meetings. 
We’re trying to collect scores from the tribune as starting with saying the strategies of our brand, interspersing a few grandiloquent English words among these. We like to put the strategy forward in our business cards too much.
In the interviews we give to the economy journals, we mention about our strategy in detail. Because the word of strategy is a grandiloquent word from wherever you look at it.
After such an introduction, I shall not say that indeed the strategy is good-for-nothing. Do not worry.
Why is this so?
Now the strategic management period is falling behind. Also the long meetings made on strategies are expected to be fallen behind. Because the new world is proceeding towards a new world not with strategy but towards a world which is managed with tactics. 
Your strategy is not adequate for you to be successful. What make you achieve success are the things which you do in the field, your understanding the market and the customer. Your capability of seeing the future. 
We’ve seen so many examples of the fact that the good cannot remain as good:
•    Until a few years ago, Nokia, the brand having the greatest market share, which was the most sold phone of the world, completed its era. It was obliged to stand aside.  
•    Blackberry, the flashy phone of the corporate life, is in coma. If you ask me, it has no chance of survival. 
•    The technology giant Sony is having hard times. It is trying to proceed with slow and bulky spurts. 
The strategies of these brands were so valuable 10 years ago. But now it makes no sense. In fact the examples are valid for all the brands though they are predominantly from the technology world. Their constituting examples of the technological brands are indeed related with the speed of the technology.  
The thing which happen to the technological brands today, shall happen to all the brands tomorrow. 
The world is changing, people are transforming. And the brands are insisting on remaining the same. It is something against the soul of nature and it is impossible. For to survive, one must catch the soul of the time and comply with the change. 
Well then what should the brand managers do?
 Let us continue to give a few advice to the brand managers:

•    Strategy is one of the most vital points for your brand. But unless it is put into action, and fed by tactics, it makes no sense.
•    There should be the change in the bottom of your strategy.  You cannot get result with a constant strategy and long-term plans.   Most of the time, you have to apply it without making a plan and throw your yesterday’s decision into the waste basket today. Yet, the important point is this; if the strategy works, it is meaningful. The strategy which seems grandiloquent but does not work shall unseat you. 
•    One of the most important subjects of our age is the speed. Being intelligent or smart is not adequate. You have to be rapid as well. Your decisions should be more rapid. Your application should gain momentum. If you are someone that is followed, you start to hear the footsteps of your rivals, the bells start to ring for you. 
•    It is the time for leaving long meetings aside. Most of the power point presentations which we love so much, are nothing more than loss of time. Unless getting into the field, touching the customer, understanding him, meetings are the greatest cost items. Please reduce them. 
•    Get rid of your brand ego. Get rid of the delusion of “we’re a great brand, we’re directing the market.” Indeed there is nothing such as a great brand. There is a valuable brand. There is a strong brand. There is a brand which gives guidance to customer.  And being a brand in which all these adjectives combine together, is the most important thing. Is your brand really a great one? Only time may tell this.
•    Change your brand into a dynamic state. Reduce your approval mechanisms. The brand is the whole of the perceptions in the mind of the customer. As the mind is continuously changing, why your brand is not changing? Why the management meetings are waited for taking decision? I’m sorry to say that the brand which is not dynamic, shall not be able to remain as a brand. Is being dynamic adequate? Of course, it is not adequate. 
•    Now, a match could not be won with a single punch.  With a single goal. Your advertisement study made with preparations which have continued for months, is forgotten one month after. Because, now the power is in the sustainability. In order to keep your place in the customer’s mind you constantly need to be aggressive, visible and impressive. Is it the customer loyalty? In this age? Quite difficult. 

If we come to the essence of the matter, strategy is a highly vital subject. But when it remains only on the paper, it is that much unimportant.
It gains meaning with the applications of the brand. It becomes effective with the results it gets.
It is strong in the ratio of its renewability. It is meaningful as much as it gives power.
It is necessary to not to look at it emotionally. If you fall in love with your strategy, you’ll suffer the pangs of love in the first storm. 


Source: *Sun Tzu Art of War