Who is your most lethal competition? How do you crush them? Go through this to get all your answers!

We are in a dynamic and fast growing world. Professional service business owners, consultants, industry leaders and even coaches are becoming relentlessly creative and aggressive with their businesses. They do not just want to make profit and be successful; they want to dominate their market. It is a very brutal movement out there.

If you desire to be successful, beyond your imagination, then you’re the person I just described above.

Now, in a bid to be more successful and hopefully topple the competition, you may become obsessed with monitoring what other businesses do.  That’s great, really great, but the error here is obsession. Being obsessed with what other businesses are doing will rob you of the productive time you should be putting in your own business. You would lose focus, become less productive and start lagging behind.

Do you need to hear some truth? This is because; I’m going to be brutally honest right now.

Other businesses are not your most dangerous competition! Shocked right?

You are your own most lethal adversary.

Let me tell you why it is so.

That you are in your market at all and profiled high means that you can compete with businesses in your industry. The competition didn’t give that edge, you worked for it. As much as you need to follow the current trend in your market, get updated and constantly refine your processes… you are doing it for you, not the “competition”. You are taking steps to be better than you were yesterday.

If you can successfully break your own record and do a great job of winning who you were or leveling up in business from yesterday… then you can beat any business, crush it, and dominate your industry. To achieve this, there are some strategies that you must apply in your business.

These strategies are simple, yet not every business puts them into practice. But if you do apply them, I assure you that your competition will become a small fry. You will always be two steps ahead.

Let’s look at them…

Assess Your Market Status

On the surface, every business in your industry does the same stuff and offers same service. But look deeper and find a niche or need that has either been poorly met, or not met at all in your market. This is probably the only reason why you should check out what other businesses are doing. Do a market search of what unmet need there is in your market.

Establish that there is a section of people neglected, because a particular service in your market isn’t available to them. Take advantage, leverage and incorporate it in your business.

I will use a hair care range business as case study…

Mary has a booming hair care range that caters to hair care for women. She has the full and dark hair wonder, the lengthy hair magic and the edge restorer. Same with practically everyone in her market. All the biggest hair care businesses carry the same content, just different brands. Everyone is fine, because those products are best sellers.

What lady doesn’t want a head full of lengthy hair with popping edges?

Soon, Mary decides that she wants to make a difference, to stand out and she starts thinking.

  • What need in the hair care industry remains unmet by me and my competitors?
  • Does the woman who has alopecia get any product that cares for her hair?
  • How about colored women with gorgeous naturally curly hair, do they get hair care appropriate for their hair?
  • Are there any hair products that care for patchy and itchy scalps?
  • Are there products specifically for hair breakage and damaged hair?

Mary starts scouting her market to find any product that remotely addresses these concerns, and there are none! She begins to make research on how to come up with something. Then she looks at her budget…

Do Your Budgeting

Once you identify an unmet need in your market, check your finances and establish a budget. This will help you understand how much you can afford to shell out at the moment. It also determines how big or small you will start off.

Remember, your budget determines the caliber of expertise you can hire.  This is because, experts don’t work for free. You need to pay them. So, creating a budget is aimed at seeing how much you can accomplish your goal within your means and how fast you can achieve those goals.

  • Decide on how much the venture will cost you
  • Decide on what expertise you need and how much of them you have to hire, to accomplish your goals

Budgeting, whether materials or human resource is very essential to planning anything. The more sound your budget is, the better your resources and the results you get. The next step is to have a strategy.

Come Up With a Strategic Plan and Implement

Create long term and short term plans about the new areas you want to incorporate into your business. The long term may be 4 years, with the main focus being on the first one year. Lay all the details out explicitly, and if possible, document them somewhere.

Be specific about the actions you need to take to achieve your set out plan. Envisage a realistic outcome from your business strategies after one year. Incorporate very aspect of your business when making this strategic plan, so that they will not sink at the expense of your expansion.

Just like Mary with the hair range, the strategy is…

  • To hire hair experts in all concerned areas
  • To collaborate with them in making thorough research over a period of time into the causes of these hair problems
  • To find combinations of active proteins, and organic materials that can handle such issues
  • To run potency trials
  • Package it enticingly and set a premium price. She may even add on a tiny bonus.
  • To get it approved by the appropriate bodies
  • To effectively market it

The outcome in one year includes…

  • Bringing a safe product that works and meets rare hair needs into the market
  • Selling out like crazy, because a particular set of women just got solutions to their pressing needs
  • No hazard record, and Mary’s products work effectively
  • Testimonials pouring in from all angles
  • Local shops in Mary’s state vying to have her products on their shelves

Performance Review

According to Shopify, repeat clients are responsible for 40% of the average annual revenue of a business. So, always remember that you are not meeting the needs of only a few people, but most of your clients too. The experience they get from previously dealing with you determines if they will return or not. Begin your assessment internally to external. Check out what everyone in your business has been up to and how effective they have been.

You may also put out the following questions…

  • How satisfied are your clients with your services?
  • What has been the modus of our operation?
  • In what way can we up our services?
  • What happened before that should not happen now?
  • What do our clients have to say about our services?
  • What approach do we take to pacify the dis-satisfied ones?

Make sure of this by mailing clients questionnaires or starting a Q/A session on your social media platforms. Get feedbacks and work with it, because in truth, as much as you want to get new clients, you need your old clients too.

Take assessments through client feedback, and use it to understand how you are perceived by clients. A performance review will show you what aspects of your services to leverage on. You will also know what practice to drop, where to improve and where your strength lies. This will position your business to serve clients better. Having put your house in order, you can go tell the world. Market!

Creatively Market

Having done all the aforementioned, you are ready to go sailing in the sea. Regardless of how great your product or service is, if the marketing isn’t rightly targeted, you’d have wasted your time, money and resources. Target the right demographic in your ads.

  • What group of people needs this specific product? (You know this already, that’s why you met the need in the first place)
  • Where can I find these people?
  • What is the age range of people who need this the most?
  • Are they likely to be educated or not? (This influences how you send your message across)
  • What’s their language?

(Understanding their language will help you reel them in without getting on their sensitive side or offending them). For instance, you don’t say to a person who has alopecia that they are balding. You should say that they are suffering from hair loss instead. You note the difference?

These questions will help you channel your ads and resources to those who really need it, instead of shooting blank shots. But, what is an ad without solid content? That’s like drawing beautiful art over a rotten wood. It will get ruined sooner or later. In the case of marketing, you’d hardly get clicks that convert, even though you’ve got a great service or product out there…

Create solid content that aligns with the products or services you’re sending out. Let your target audience know in detail what your service is about, and the outcome you will help them get. Make your content helpful, informative, educative and detailed. This is your service, the more you tell, the better you attract.

Do not be modest about your product or service. You are meeting a need that has not been met or is rarely met in your industry. State it! Let your audience know that they cannot get it anywhere else, provided that is true. Clients will be ready to patronize you, regardless of your price. All they need is results! Put your clients first at every instance. That’s what will make your business stand tall in the long term.

This is you leaving other businesses behind by moving two steps ahead of the competition in your market.

Do you still doubt that you are your own competition?

If you can conquer yourself, you can conquer your opposition. You are your biggest competition, break your own record! If you do succeed at breaking your record, other businesses and challenges will pale in comparison.

All strategies we’ve discussed previously come together to form a stealth arsenal with which you can crush the competition, or do we say other businesses this time? Every single thing you do to improve your business is what it is… to improve your business. This is because you want to grow, be better than yesterday, and dominate in your market. You don’t do them because of another business.

When you are two steps ahead, other business struggle to catch up, and before they do, you have become an expert in that area… and broken more grounds. But there is caveat… do not rest on your oars. Other similar businesses are right on your heels, and if you rest, they eat your meal. So, keep learning, updating, refining and upping the ante on your service delivery! Most importantly, always put your clients first in everything you do.

Listen to your customers, not your competitors. – Joel Spolsky

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