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Platform Strategy for Business

Provided by Boston University (BUx)
Intermediate
See prerequisites
Free

$200 USD for graded exams and assignments, plus a certificate

Learn how you can design, launch, monetize and compete in a networked platform market.

Start Date:

Before you start

  • Secondary school (high school) algebra; basic mathematics concepts
  • A willingness to explore economics

What you will learn

  • How to successfully launch and design a business platform
  • Why platform firms beat product firms and how the structure of platform firms is fundamentally different
  • Why traditional platform pricing models fail and how to choose a successful pricing model
  • How to compete in winner-take-all network markets.
Week 1: Foundations 
What’s happening in the economy.  Why platform firms are fundamentally different than product firms.
 
Week 2: Architecture 
Components of and design principles of successful platforms.
 
Week 3: Launch 
Strategies for solving the chicken-or-egg problem and how to gain critical mass.
 
Week 4: Monetization 
Why pricing is different in platform markets and how to choose price.
 
Week 5: Open vs Closed 
How Steve Jobs got it wrong the 1st time.  How to choose what to give away and what to keep.
 
Week 6: Strategy 
Why product strategies fail for platforms and how to compete in a network market.

Overview

Firms such as Apple, Alibaba, Facebook, SalesForce, Uber and Yelp operate platform ecosystems that match buyers and sellers, gain value and market share from network effects, and harness their users to innovate.

This course teaches you how to convert products to platforms and how to innovate in a platform environment. You will learn how to negotiate platform startup, convert existing products to platforms, and make vital decisions on issues of openness, cannibalization, and competition.

Learners in this course will solve real-life problems using concepts from two sided networks, information asymmetry, pricing, intellectual property, and game theory.

The instructor for this course literally wrote the book on the topic: “Platform Revolution: How Networked Markets Are Transforming the Economy—and How to Make Them Work for You.

This course is part of both the Digital Leadership and Product Management MicroMasters programs.

Meet your instructors

Who can take this course?

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