Make yourself different from the competition
The goal of marketing is to create difference in the eyes of your prospects. In today’s world of business, in each market segment and any line of business, there are multiple vendors (i.e, several companies offering the same thing). The real goal of marketing therefore, is to make a difference in our favour. Marketing must not only project our image and let us know about the prospects that interest us, but clearly communicate why prospects would place us in the forefront of their mind. Also, it`s key to understand how we are different from the competition.
Competitive advantage is the real difference, but must be sustainable. We must provide a real value to our customers, but do this realistically and within budget. Though we identify points of added value that differentiate us from the competition, we must be careful in two respects: Are they elements of differentiation relevant to my customers? Which elements of differentiation are sustainable in the long term?
Once we identify and / or develop a true competitive advantage, it becomes the backbone of our scheme of persuasive communication: our marketing will refer to it, our sales arguments and the way we sell will mention it; our customer service systems will focus towards nurturing that advantage. Moreover, we can guarantee it in writing, and that trust of our prospects will allow us to get more sales.
If we do not yet have a competitive advantage for real, it’s time to ask yourself some necessary questions. Another differentiating factor is therefore security writing. A written guarantee for any returns or defective products will give greater confidence to our prospects and customers, as they will have evidence that we stand behind the product or service you sell. If we offer a written guarantee, written on clear and objective terms, determining the scope and restrictions (it’s a good idea to review this with an accountant), it becomes a good tool to attract prospects and convert customers.
Another key to successful marketing is to identify the appropriate target market for our product or service. Even if all persons or companies could buy what you offer, you need to focus your marketing to be successful toward that target group that is in need of the goods or service that you sell. Who can afford it? Who can give you the volume and profitability?
If you properly identify the market, then you should focus on developing the competitive advantages that the market appreciates. Look into the values and then communicate them effectively, knowing the ways to sell successfully, without having to be the cheapest.
For example, consider a laundry and dry cleaning business operating in an area with a high incidence of young households with working parents on adequate incomes. If you can offer ample parking, along with a fast delivery service treatment and care, you can have a successful business. Furthermore, your customers will value the features of your service and your attention, looking beyond the price, and you will have created a competitive advantage. Which actions can you make in your business and in your life, to get ahead of the rest?
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