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In search of blue oceans: The Starwood experience

Are companies using Blue Ocean Strategy to search for ‘uncontested market space’ and, if so, how? One group which has been exploring blue ocean thinking for the past three years is Starwood Hotels and Resorts.


Writing books at the push of a button

INSEAD professor Phil Parker has been granted a US patent for his software programme that writes books. It took him seven years to get the patent, and while the registered patent name is decidedly scholastic: Method and Apparatus for Automated Authoring and Marketing, the implications for the information age are not. It’s not 'creative intelligence.' It’s 'reverse engineering' – deconstructing books into 'genres' and then writing software programmes to fit those genres.


The Money Illusion

A. Chattopadhyay, K. Wertenbroch

Consumers are commonly subject to what economists call ‘the money illusion’, whereby a consumer’s perception of the value of money is influenced by the nominal value of the currency. In other words, it’s psychologically easier for an American consumer to buy a widget for one dollar in the US than it is for that same consumer to purchase the same widget while on a trip in Vietnam for 16,000 Vietnamese dong, the equivalent of one US dollar.


How behaviour prediction can help to reinforce good habits but break bad ones

Human beings are creatures of habit. Many of our actions are repetitive and require little conscious thought or effort. However, according to a new study, by predicting our behaviour we can actually reinforce good habits and break bad ones.


Create the right sort of buzz about your products

INSEAD Knowledge

How important is word of mouth, more popularly known as buzz, for the success of your new products? Some companies rely on product placement in movies or the endorsement of a sports star or pop singer to help create a buzz about their particular brand. But according to INSEAD Professor of Marketing, Amitava Chattopadhyay, companies may have more control than they previously thought possible regarding the buzz about their new products – they just have to take a more systematic approach.