Differences between Offensive Strategy and Defensive Strategy

Differences between Offensive Strategy and Defensive Strategy

Offensive strategy: Offensive strategy is a type of corporate strategy that consists of actively trying to pursue changes within the industry. Companies that are managed as offensive competitive generally invest heavily in technology and Research and Development (R&D) in an effort to stay ahead of the competition. For example, a company using an offensive marketing strategy may seek to target an established industry leader’s shaky product safety record by emphasizing the safety of its own products.

Objectives of offensive strategies:

  • To maximize the sales
  • To destabilize the current market leader
  • To acquire market share

Defensive strategies: Defensive strategies are management tools that can be used to fend off an attack from a potential competitor. Think of it as a battleground: You have to protect your share of the market in order to keep your customers happy and your profits stable. Defending your business strategy is about knowing the market you’re best equipped to operate in and about knowing when to widen your appeal to enter into new markets. The established company simply uses its defensive marketing to reinforce customer confidence in its products and swat the newcomer away.

Objectives of Defensive strategies:

  • To maintain the existing market share and to maximize profitability
  • To safeguard the existing levels of competitive advantage
  • To keep up top position in local and existing markets.

Companies pursuing offensive strategies directly target competitors from which they want to capture market share. In contrast to offensive strategies – which are aimed to attack your market competition – defensive strategies are about holding onto what you have and about using your competitive advantage to keep competitors at bay. Defensive strategies are used to discourage or turn back an offensive strategy on the part of the competitor.