The Coherence Premium by Leinwand and Mainardi, discusses how organizations should not focus on competing with rivals, but to instead parallel their internal capabilities with their external market. Organizations that focus more on their internal capabilities are more likely to succeed and outperform their competitors. By avoiding the temptation to expand into other markets or investing in incompatible mergers, organizations can identify what they are good at and use it to their advantage to achieve their goals by aligning their business functions to that quality capability.
Blue Apron, a subscription meal prep company delivers farm-fresh ingredients via a home delivery system for normal people to cook, is achieving much success from its ability to have coherency within their business strategy. The key to Blue Apron’s 500 percent increase in subscribers in 2015, is their identification of what customers want and providing it to them (Reynolds, 2016). Blue Apron uses their main capabilities, such as their relationships with farmers and seafood suppliers and social media outlets, to gain a competitive advantage in the cooking and subscription meal delivery industry.
The company also appeals to the consumer’s increasing desire in buying farm-fresh, locally sourced, organic, and sustainable seafood. Although it takes time to make multiple grocery store runs to get those items, and more time to clean, cut, and prepare dinner, Blue Apron provides the solution to all of these issues. People no longer have to make a grocery list, shop, and think of what they are going to cook for dinner. All they need to do is receive their shipment, put everything together, and follow a recipe to result in a culinary meal.
Reality television also introduced the culinary world to many ordinary people through cooking and cooking challenge shows (Reynolds, 2016). Blue Apron caters to the curiosity of a home chef by providing access to ingredients not ordinarily accessible to everyone. Blue Apron leverages on social media, such as Facebook, to provide a platform for people to share their recipe creations and to having users sell their product through networking. People feel good emotions when they create a good recipe, snap a photo, and upload it to a place where others comment and like the picture. Other people who may not have a subscription service may inquire about it, and the subscriber can recommend the company to their friends sharing free meal trial codes. Their friends will join the service, and also create culinary meals and share them on social media (Horton, 2015). This reinforces the consumer’s reason to continue to subscribe to such a service.
The success of Blue Apron will continue as long as they can continue to remain strategically focused on the consumer and to provide exotic ingredients that are sustainable and fresh. By creating mutually beneficial relationships with local farmers and fishing markets, Blue Apron can align their internal capabilities, such as creating delicious recipes and obtaining the best ingredients, with what the consumer desires.
Horton, J. J. (2015, February 6). Marketing in Networks: The Case of Blue Apron. Retrieved from John J. Horton : http://john-joseph-horton.com/marketing-in-networks-the-case-of-blue-apron/
Reynolds, M. (2016). The Brilliant Marketing Strategy That Helped Blue Apron Find Success. Retrieved from Inc.com: http://www.inc.com/molly-reynolds/how-blue-apron-cooked-up-its-delicious-content-marketing-strategy.html