Salesforce.com: Creating a Blue Ocean in the B2B Space

Published 28 Jan 2013
Reference 5911
Topic Strategy
Region Global
Length 11 page(s)
Language English

The case describes a series of blue ocean strategic moves made by Salesforce.com in the CRM application market. In particular, the case addresses the concern of business executives over the applicability of blue ocean strategy in the B2B area. B2B managers often find that they are locked into providing products of certain types and specifications to their immediate customers. But in fact, value innovation can take place on the three platforms of a business offering, i.e., product, service and delivery. Salesforce.com's strategic moves provide an exemplary demonstration of how a company can effectively create and renew its blue ocean in the B2B field by value innovating its single business on the product, service and delivery platforms alternately. The case is accompanied by a comprehensive teaching note that analyzes and explains the key strategic moves of Salesforce.com using major BOS frameworks and tools. The case comes with a teaching note and a lecture slide pack. The lectures slides can be downloaded from https://www.blueoceanstrategy.com/teaching-materials/salesforce-com/
The case and teaching note are also available in Chinese.

Teaching objectives

This case is intended to demonstrate the methodology for creating a blue ocean for the B2B business. It highlights the importance of value innovating on the three platforms of product, service, and delivery to create and renew blue oceans. Participants are also expected to reinforce their understanding about important BOS concepts and frameworks such as the noncustomer concept, the buyer utility analysis, the six paths framework, and the ERRC analysis.

  • Computer software
  • Value innovation
  • Corporate social responsibility
  • Brand equity
  • Customer relationship management
  • Blue ocean strategy
  • Software-as-a-service (SaaS)
  • Strategic Innovation
  • B2B
  • Salesforce.com
  • Strategy, Competition
  • Q21213