The Content Trap: A Strategist's Guide to Digital Change

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“A masterful and thought-provoking book that has reshaped my understanding of content in the digital landscape.”—Ariel Emanuel, co-CEO, WME | IMG

Harvard Business School Professor of Strategy Bharat Anand presents an incisive new approach to digital transformation that favors fostering connectivity over focusing exclusively on content.

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY BLOOMBERG

Companies everywhere face two major challenges today: getting noticed and getting paid. To confront these obstacles, Bharat Anand examines a range of businesses around the world, from The New York Times to The Economist, from Chinese Internet giant Tencent to Scandinavian digital trailblazer Schibsted, and from talent management to the future of education. Drawing on these stories and on the latest research in economics, strategy, and marketing, this refreshingly engaging book reveals important lessons, smashes celebrated myths, and reorients strategy.

Success for flourishing companies comes not from making the best content but from recognizing how content enables customers’ connectivity; it comes not from protecting the value of content at all costs but from unearthing related opportunities close by; and it comes not from mimicking competitors’ best practices but from seeing choices as part of a connected whole.

Digital change means that everyone today can reach and interact with others directly: We are all in the content business. But that comes with risks that Bharat Anand teaches us how to recognize and navigate. Filled with conversations with key players and in-depth dispatches from the front lines of digital change, The Content Trap is an essential new playbook for navigating the turbulent waters in which we find ourselves.

Praise for The Content Trap

“Today, to some extent, every company is a media company, but Anand emphasizes that it’s not just about the content you create; it’s the connections you make that matter—the platforms and network effects.”—Doug McMillon, CEO, Wal-Mart Stores

The Content Trap is a book filled with stories of businesses, from music companies to magazine publishers, that missed connections and could never escape the narrow views that had brought them past success. But it is also filled with stories of those who made strategic choices to strengthen the links between content and returns in their new master plans. . . . The book is a call to clear thinking and reassessing why things are the way they are.”The Wall Street Journal

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