Exhibit 4.8 presents Treacy and Wiersema’s sources of competitive advantage. Operational excellence, product leadership, and customer intimacy are three means to the same end (i.e., advantageous brand differentiation).
According to marketing professional Jana Barrett in the article “Why Customer Experience is the New Competitive Advantage,” a fourth strategy for developing a competitive advantage exists: design of customer experience. Whether you sell products or services, design of how customers interact with and use your offering can set apart your brand from competitors.
Do you agree with Barrett’s position that design of the customer experience can be the basis of a competitive advantage that is distinct from operational excellence, product leadership, and customer intimacy? Explain your position.