Imagine two companies.

One is a multibillion-dollar corporation that dominates its industry. The company's products are household names, and it sells those products at obscene margins. Smaller competitors tremble in its presence.

The other company is led by a 32-year-old entrepreneur with a brilliant idea. Although it flies under the radar now, it will one day rewrite the rules of business.

Which company deserves your investment dollars -- the Rule Maker or the Rule Breaker? Two Foolish analysts are here to end this eternal battle once and for all. Ryan Fuhrmann believes in the tried-and-true Rule Makers such as Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO), which have long track records of outperformance.

Meanwhile, Tim Beyers is always on the lookout for huge returns from the Next Big Thing. Tim is on the Motley Fool Rule Breakers team, whose picks are currently beating the market on the backs of highfliers like Web-content delivery specialist Akamai (NASDAQ:AKAM).

Which approach is best for you? Are you a Rule Maker or a Rule Breaker? This table should give you some idea of which approach you prefer.

Rule Makers

Rule Breakers


Widely known

New, unknown


High margins, low debt

May be unprofitable or have high debt

Key traits

Experience, strength

Vision, agility


Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT),
Disney (NYSE:DIS)


Now, read the arguments and decide for yourself. Duel on, Fools!

Both Rule Makers and Rule Breakers find their way into our investment newsletters. Coca-Cola and Microsoft are Motley Fool Inside Value recommendations. Disney is a Stock Advisor recommendation. Akamai Technologies and iRobot are Rule Breakers recommendations. Try any one of our investing services free for 30 days.

Joey Khattab owns shares of iRobot. The Fool has a disclosure policy.