Micro-Strategizing in Platform Ecosystems: A Multiple Case Study
Paper i proceeding, 2011
The strategy by which a platform owner manages the future trajectory of its platform involves many unknowns. In particular, the ambition to simultaneously control the platform and distribute design capability to users is challenging. While there is an emerging literature on strategy in platform ecosystems, little empirical evidence exists about the series of strategic actions that platform owners conduct to create value in an ecosystem context. Drawing on a strategy-as-process perspective, this paper augments existing platform perspectives by seeking to understand the micro-strategizing of a platform owner. To this end, we report a multiple case study of Apple’s use of application programming interfaces for generating value from the iPhone platform. Our comparative analysis identifies and explores five different micro-strategies that can be enacted proactively or reactively: counteracting, monetizing, resourcing, securing, and sustaining. The paper concludes with a number of theoretical and practical implications of these micro-strategies and their interaction.