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PHD Highlights 10 Challenger Types in the New Era of Disruption

PHD has collaborated with author Adam Morgan for a new publication titled Overthrow II – 10 strategies from the new wave of challenges. The book draws on the insights and experiences of today’s challengers disrupting the status quo and identifies 10 different challenger types. They include Real and Human, Feisty Underdog, Local Hero, Next Generation and Dramatic Disruptor.

Overthrow II contains interviews from companies including Xiaomi, Mailchimp, bumble, Audi and Oatly. It looks at the strategic principles that each follows, the media behaviours they practice, and draws conclusions about what these challenger types have in common when it comes to marketing behaviour.

The book follows the previous collaboration between PHD and eatbigfish in 2012, Overthrow – 10 ways to tell a challenger story, and is co-written by Morgan and Malcolm Devoy, PHD EMEA’s chief strategy officer.

Eileen Ooi (pictured), MD of PHD Malaysia, said there is no better time than now for challenger thinking, as the marketing landscape continues to be disrupted not just by technology, but across all fronts affecting the way consumers behave, forcing brands to rethink their own positions. She added that challenger brands today are not just about the small or new players in the category, even big brands can adopt challenger thinking for their marketing efforts.

“While many point of views on challenger marketing have been rather two dimensional, in Overthrow II, we have explored the mindsets and behaviours that make challenger brands so successful, distilling the learnings for other brands to take inspiration from,” she said.

According to Morgan, Overthrow II explores what it means to be a challenger beyond the superficial David versus Goliath cliché. He added that it is a guide to helping marketers find the kind of challenger brand narrative they need to be compelling in an increasingly noisy, crowded and distracted world.