There is a new rule in business: don't aim for the middle market - unless you're cheaper than cheap, you're going to fail. Instead, find a Niche and reap the rewards. Woolworths suffered from a lack of identity and found that low quality and low price wasn't enough; General Motors crashed as motorists failed to distinguish between cars in their range. Yet HBO, Moleskine and specialist media like The Economist have all concentrated on being the best they can be - and customers have flocked to them as a result. For sixty years, our cultural consumption has been controlled by the giants of the mass market. But thanks to the recession they have become weak and defensive, and are now in a desperate fight for their lives. From this new cultural terrain the niche has evolved to become the place where innovation flourishes and sales take off. From the author of CYBURBIA comes a superb examination of the growing proportion of economic, political and cultural activity aimed not at the mainstream audience but at tightly defined but globally scattered niches, bound together by the power of the net.
When the world's two largest steel producers went head to head in a bitter struggle for market domination, an epic corporate battle ensued that sent shockwaves through the political corridors of Europe, overheated the world's financial markets and transformed the steel industry. Billions of dollars were at stake.
At the heart of the battle were two men: Guy Dollé, Chairman and CEO of Luxembourg-based Arcelor, the world's largest steel producer by turnover and Lakshmi Mittal, a self-made Indian industrialist and the richest man in Great Britain. Only one could prevail . . .
Once there was no text messaging. No email and no social network sites like Facebook, Bebo and MySpace. The way we live has apparently been transformed by new ways of communicating. But where did these trends start? And if they can change our behaviour, can they also change the way we think?
In Cyburbia James Harkin describes how the architecture of our digital lives was built over seventy years. In a brilliant narrative that encompasses the work of crackpots, inventors and visionaries, it shows how a concept that began with the need to shoot down German bombers has evolved to govern almost everything - from our lives online to modern films like Memento and 21 Grams, from TV shows and plays to military strategy. Gripping, revelatory and fiercely intelligent, this extraordinary book will change forever the way you think about everything you do.