In a global economy, sustained competitive advantage arises from tackling social, political and environmental issues as part of a corporate strategy — not just pursuing business as usual.
Business strategy begins with operations, the competitive landscape and markets. But David Bach and
David B. Allen of the IE Business School Center for Nonmarket Strategy argue that strategy should not
end there. Rather, a robust nonmarket strategy that addresses government regulation, political and
social movements, even activist opposition should figure strongly in any strategy.
Nonmarket strategy starts with the premise that issues and actors “beyond the market” affect the
bottom line. Which nonmarkets are most important? That depends on the key issues a company confronts. By identifying key issues, and then the actors who are shaping them, a company can begin to shape the nonmarket–a crucial approach when the issue is core to the underlying market as well.