This article provides you with 4 ways to deal with competitors. You may wish your competitor would just go away. But having them around is good for your business. So don’t be afraid of competition. And you have to deal with the situation you are facing advantageously. You may have similar products to your competitors. However, when you start losing business to them, you only then find they are offering some great things. Yes, perhaps the products are even better than yours.
4 ways to deal with competitors
Then it’s definitely time to deal with your competitors. Having competitors focuses your mind, keeps you on your toes and forces you to go that extra mile. You can also learn many things from the successes and failures of your adversary. And of course, if they have failed at something, you don’t need to go down the same path, when they have spent their money proving it would not work. So don’t be afraid of competition – learn to use it to your advantage.
1. Never underestimate your competition
Competitors may vary in size, experience and capabilities, but they have one thing in common. They all want to beat you. Some of your competitors may have more money to play with than you, but it is usually the smaller competitors who turn out to be more of a threat to you. Small companies are nimble, move fast and can hide what they are doing better. Larger competitors have layers of bureaucracy, pulling them down.
An example of this is that we worked on two projects. One was a fantastic brand with 1000s of employees, and another was a start-up with 20 people in their team—both in FinTech, but not direct competitors. By the time we had gone through the NDA process from the large company, we had completed the entire project for the start-up. Your smaller rivals are in survival mode, and can they may cut corners and take more significant risks. Never underestimate your competitors, especially the little guys.
2. Don’t copy
Some think that the best way to compete with their competitors is to copy what you believe they are doing. It must be right because your much bigger competitor appears to be doing it well. Competitive Intelligence is not about copying, but it’s more about creating more certainty that your own path is the right one.
If you copy, you are just jumping on the latest trend and bandwagon, they are following. And it could be the case that they could have bigger budgets to play with and a bigger team to keep busy. They will not have your drive, experiences and passion. So follow your own path but make sure you know what’s around the corner and behind that bush.
3. Don’t play dirty
Competitors can also be partners. Competitors can be a great source of information and sometimes advice. They may play dirty, disrespect, criticise or see you as irrelevant, but so what? And if they act like this in their market; they will likely treat their customers the same way. Building you another competitive advantage over them.
4. Don’t Ignore them
You cant monitor everyone in the market, but you can’t ignore all of them too. How about defining your competitor landscape something like this:
- Key competitors – Your key competitors.
- Emerging start-ups – The next big thing, those who have the potential to become key competitors.
- Surveillance – Potential competitors who have the resources to smash a hole in the market.
If you start losing business to a competitor, find out why. Is their product better than yours? Have they made improvements or made it more attractive? Ignore the competition at your peril. It will be disastrous for your business.
The competition will not disappear. Learn to accept it and take it your advantage.