small-companies-beat-big-companies

Why Small Companies Beat Big Companies

Gee Ranasinha Marketing 5 Comments

Big companies are getting bigger. Barely a day goes by without some multinational being in the news about buying another.

It’s not surprising. It’s what big companies do.

If you’re a big company, then you’re under a ton of pressure to keep performing – over and over again. Sales for the quarter have to be better than this time last year. New products to be launched and new markets to be found. Stakeholders and/or shareholders demand nothing less.

But big companies have had their time in the sun. Today, being a small company is where it’s at.

I don’t mean that Apple, or Walmart, or Coca-Cola are going to go bust tomorrow. I mean that small companies are outmaneuvering big companies because (now) they can.

Publishing a magazine used to be a costly, elaborate and risky venture. You needed tech staff, a bunch of Macs and expensive software. You had to produce the pages in multiples of 4, optimize the pages for the printing process (what used to be called “prepress”) then get them printed, trimmed, bound and distributed. Publishing a magazine only made financial sense if you could sell lots of (physical) copies (and lots of advertising).

Today, you don’t need to be Time Inc., or Hachette, or Random House to be a publisher. The cost of entry is an internet connection.

The problem with big companies is their size.

Small companies have the flexibility to react to market changes and capitalize on opportunities without having to go through 27 levels of bureaucracy and a Board-level vote. Small companies innovate, changing the way that we think about finding a place to stay when we’re away from home (Airbnb), or storing/sharing our files with others (DropBox). Why? Because they have to.

Small companies focus on customer relations – in not being an anonynous, faceless corporate façade. Small companies get the business because they’re good, not because they’re big.

Forget the multinational conglomerates with their “one size fits all” mentality. A Big Mac, or iPad, or Diet Coke is the same no matter where you buy it.

And that’s the problem.


About the Author
Avatar for Gee Ranasinha

Gee Ranasinha

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After founding a successful media production firm, Gee became worldwide director of marketing for a European software company. As well as CEO of KEXINO he's an author, lecturer, husband, and father; and one hell of a nice bloke. He lives in a world of his own in Strasbourg, France, tolerated by his wife and young son. Find out more about Gee at kexino.com/gee-ranasinha.



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Comments 5

  1. Avatar for Gee Ranasinha
    1. Avatar for Gee Ranasinha

      You got it, Cathy.

      Small companies get to add value through emotional connections, honesty and the creation of trust. Big companies, by their very definition, have a harder time of it.

      Nice to see you here again!

      1. Avatar for Gee Ranasinha

         Hi Gee. Yeah, I like coming back to your blog here because it’s got great and valuable content and it’s useful for marketers and bloggers alike. And did I say you got some sensible posts to boot? That’s why I value your opinions 🙂

        1. Avatar for Gee Ranasinha
  2. Avatar for Gee Ranasinha

    Whilst as an observation this is generally true, its not a cast iron rule.   Big companies could be better than small companies if they had a small company mentality. I think it is possible to be big and agile, and get the benefits of stature in the market combined with the flat reporting structure & sense of responsibility you get in a small enterprise.    But sadly most big companies are big and slow, which comes from all the employees hiding behind their job description, and not feeling part of the equation.  Conversely, in the past I worked for a small company before that tried to behave like a big company!   Too many structures placing unnecessary overheads on everyone in the business, like combining the worst points of a small and large company into one!!    But I get your point in a general sense.

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