A Case Study of Progressive Formation of Accounting Cloud Service in Japan: The Second Stage

A Case Study of Progressive Formation of Accounting Cloud Service in Japan: The Second Stage

Yutaka Mizuno (Nagoya Institute of Technology, Nagoya City, Japan) and Nobutaka Odake (Nagoya Institute of Technology, Nagoya City, Japan)
DOI: 10.4018/IJSSMET.2016070102
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Abstract

The purpose of this study is to clarify the best practice of marketing strategy in Japanese accounting cloud services. The authors examine platform development and ecosystem formation of an accounting cloud service in the second stage. As the results, the authors obtain three findings. First, the best accounting cloud service has been driving a spiral model of marketing strategy consistently. Second, customer groups of the cloud service, which are connected by chain composition with path dependence, constitute multiplex markets structure. Associated service groups, which are also connected chain composition, constitute multi-dimensions service structure. Third, the service provider has started new Open & Close strategy that involves formulating closure of network structure of associated services. These strategies realized its sustainable growth. Therefore, cloud service providers not only adopt Open & Close strategy, but also build up a spiral model of marketing strategy to formulate two chain compositions with path dependence for customer groups and associated service groups.
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We fill key research gaps in the existing literature: organization management, social networks and social capital, marketing strategy, and open service innovation.

Organization Management

Gawer and Cusumano (2002) define that “Platforms are industry building blocks which attract other firms’ investment and innovation on add-on products or services analyzed the competitive strategy of major enterprises” in the viewpoint of the platform formation. Platform strategy discusses how to manage and how to integrate internal resources of enterprise. Iansiti and Levien (2004) examine competitive strategy with the framework of business ecosystem (Moore, 1993; 1996), which connects seamlessly with various enterprises. Business ecosystem discusses how to manage and integrate external resources of enterprises.

March (1991) discusses the relation between the exploration of new possibilities and the exploitation of old certainties in organizational learning. March (1991) defines that exploration includes things captured by terms such as search, variation, risk taking, experimentation, play, flexibility, discovery, innovation; and that exploitation includes such things as refinement, choice, production, efficiency, selection, implementation, execution. The exploration is in a trade-off relationship with exploitation and has vulnerability in comparison with the exploitation (March, 1991).

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