In the current context of rapidly growing market rivalry, businesses widely turn towards the concept of blue oceans so as to avoid cut-throat competition pressures. Today start-up businesses tend to eliminate competition challenges by relying increasingly on the blue ocean approach as they strongly believe that it is the most potential way to overcome the market entry barriers. One of the major advantages of this strategy is that it would assist start-ups to cut down their promotional costs and to invest more in business development. Prezi.com is a start-up business that has used the blue ocean strategy successfully to position its brand. Since customers were dissatisfied with the general slide-presentation models, the concept of presentation software introduced by the Prezi was rapidly accepted. This paper will explore why Prezi was founded and how it used blue ocean strategy to address challenges and to improve the overall business performance.
A brief Overview of the Company
Prezi is a presentation collaboration website launched in 2009 by co-founders Peter Arvai, Adam Somlai-Fischer, and Peter and Halacsy. Prezi is presentation software as well as a storytelling tool helping users to present their ideas on a virtual platform. A zooming user interface (ZUI) is the most significant highlight of this presentation software that allows users to zoom in and out their presentations thus giving them a great visual experience. In addition, as Page (2014) points out, a 2.5D or parallax 3D space enhances the usability of this software. In 2008, Prezi.com was developed with the support of Kitchen Budapest and Magyar Telekom so as to propose a visually advanced alternative to the ordinary slide-based presentations.
The major products and services offered by the Prezi include Prezi ZUI, Prezi Desktop, and Prezi Collaborate. Recently the company has developed Prezi viewer, an iPad-supported app for viewing the prezis on online accounts. The business uses a freemium revenue model by which users of Prezi’s public license need to publish their work on the website in a publicly viewable manner whereas paid customers are allowed to keep their presentations private. Prezi based presentations are mainly used for business and conferences needs as well as education purposes. Most of the modern computer devices and web browsers support the better performance of Prezi.com.
Before the launching of Prezi.com, ordinary slide-based presentations were used in business conferences and learning classes. The most potential limitation of such presentations was that only a limited amount of data/information could be integrated into a slide. As a result, the users needed to navigate through a number of slides to obtain a clear understanding of the overall topic being presented. In addition, the audience struggled to recap the ideas that were presented in a previous slide and to link them to the current situation if the presentation was too long. As described in Prezi’s blog (“Create and present anytime.” (Feb 25, 2014), another problem identified is that it was really a troublesome task for Prezi users to create, edit, and view their work while they were on the move a few years back because of connectivity issues. As a result, users of the Prezi software, particularly business people, found it difficult to make last minute changes to their presentations. In addition, it was extremely a challenging task for people who had to give dozens of presentations worldwide to keep track of their work effectively (“Create and present anytime..”). The company has admitted that the website’s ZUI feature has the potential to cause nausea. The website’s lack of color and font options was also criticized. Many people argued that there was nothing new with Prezi.com and they were yet to see an excellent presentation using this website. In this context, many educators have suggested learners to use power point presentations instead of Prezi presentations. Another major issue faced by the Prezi was that it needed a relatively fast internet connection to load all of its features, and this website often performed poorly when the connection speed was low. These problems significantly limited the scope of Prezi.com and many users sought for potential alternatives.
Use of Blue Ocean Strategy
Prezi.com is a good example of a company that used blue ocean strategy successfully to make the competition irrelevant by entering unexplored market segments. The creation of Prezi.com itself is a blue ocean strategy because previously there were no firms offering such online presentations services. Therefore, users of power point slides were exited to shift their focus to this online presentation service, and this situation stimulated the growth of this start up business. Prezi.com is not exposed to competition pressures as this concept is new in the market and the firm still operates in the blue ocean. Similarly, the Prezi introduced its desktop application so as to enable the users to work on their presentation while on the move. As described in its blog, the company spent a lot of time talking with the clients who had delivered presentations on the move with intent to clearly understand the challenges they face in their daily tasks. The new Prezi developed for Windows/Mac is able to give users better access to their prezis even while there are on the go. With the support of Prezi’s newest desktop application, the users do not need to manually synchronize their downloaded presentations again in the absence of internet (“Create and present anytime..”). As a result, users can work on their presentations easily even though there is no internet connection in the board room. Uses obtain a seamless Prezi experience regardless of whether they are working online or off as the company has integrated a stream of advanced features to its desktop application. In short, the Prezi clients may feel the experience of using its online editor even when they work offline.
Irrespective of what type of Prezi license someone has, they are able to present their prezis offline using the firm’s freely available desktop application. Hence, today Prezi users do not need to worry about the presentation hall’s patchy Wi-Fi network because they have constant access to their prezis (“Create and present anytime..”). As another blog (“Introducing nutshell”, Feb 10, 2015) describes, in response to the lack of font and color options and other issues, the Prezi introduced another blue ocean strategy that represents an app called Nutshell converting “life’s moments into visual, shareable stories”. This app allows Prezi users to convert their snapshots into a single cinematic narrative and to customize the nutshell using text and animated graphics. Today millions of people rely on Nutshell to convert their pictures and videos into ‘dynamic visual stories’ and to share them with their friends and relatives (“Introducing nutshell”, Feb 10, 2015). No doubt, this storytelling feature would be appealing to people because they might not obtain such a dynamic visual experience before. It is evident that this blue ocean strategy has greatly benefited the organization to solve many of its operational issues and to enhance the overall performance of the business. As the company increasingly relies on the blue ocean, it does not need to worry about vying with competitors. In other words, Prezi.com operates in an industry where the rules of competition are yet to be defined, and hence the company has a potential market space for enhancing its future growth.
“Create and present anytime.” (Feb 25, 2014). Prezi blog. [online] available at: http://blog.prezi.com/latest/2014/2/25/create-and-present-anytime-anywhere-introducing-the-new-prez.html [accessed 15 July 2015].
“Introducing nutshell”. (Feb 10, 2015). Prezi blog. [online] available at: http://blog.prezi.com/latest/introducing-nutshell [accessed 15 July 2015].
Page, W. (2014). An introduction to Prezi. [online] available at: https://prezi.com/fmz2ivk-ayko/an-introduction-to-prezi/ [accessed 15 July 2015].