You have a small business up and running, but unfortunately in terms of sales and profits, it is not running, it is crawling. You have all the infrastructures and a marketing strategy in place, but you seem to be working in the shadows of your direct competitors. Your direct competitors are those businesses that are selling the same products and services and are targeting the same market and location as you. The reason your bank account is not growing fatter is because your competitor has a better market share and to keep your business running and growing, you will have to ‘steal’ their customers – to appear less criminal its more like ‘grab’ customers from them. Here is how:
You are selling the same products as the store around the corner or across the street and they seem to be doing better than you. Its time to jump out of the steam engine and get on one of those Japanese bullet trains to the next destination – ‘Success City’. One of the best ways you can pull the carpet right beneath your competitors’ feet is by creating more awareness about your products. You might be dealing with the same services and products but a little bit more description will go a long way in pushing you up the market share ladder.
We all know that the coffee we drink is made from the best beans from Brazil or from the vast plantations of East Africa, but what more can you offer to be unique and stand out. The main idea here is not about coffee shops, it’s more about what information you can include in your product’s description that will attract more attention and curiosity. ‘The best coffee made from hand picked, roasted and ground indigenous beans from Brazil’ this is more striking than just ‘the best coffee’. Before your competitors think about restructuring their description, you will have grabbed a few of their customers who are interested in new and better products.
One important point to keep in mind during this ‘heist’ is that you will have to be at the top of your game to retain the customers you have stolen.
Add More Value To Your Products And Services
Once a consumer establishes a preference in their mind, revisiting that decision is rare. Unless, of course, the consumer is presented with compelling reasons to reconsider their preference. Some customers might be buying from your competitors because they think their products and services are more superior. It’s difficult to convince them otherwise. Instead of being in a tug of war for consumers, sneak around the back and grab those that have not yet pledge allegiance to your competitors.
How? is not a difficult question here; most consumers work hard to earn their money and you have to respect that and show them you do. The best way to approach this is giving them a value for their money by offering high quality products and services and giving them something extra. This might be in form of an increase in quantity, extra services, or a lowering of the price by margins that will not hurt your income. Get a bigger coffee mug, after repairing the garage door, clean it; after delivering a product, help in the assembly. You will not need to stand at the top of the mountain to announce what you are doing; word of mouth will do all the work for you.
Branding can play a major role in the marketing of a small business and if you made some mistakes when you started, you need to correct these mistakes for a better market share. Building a good brand has a lot of weight in building consumer trust and projecting your business as reliable and professional. Revisit your branding and improve it such that it attracts the target consumers and throws even the most loyal of your competitor’s customers into temptations. Come up with a number of branding strategies and test them on random people on the street and record the feedback.
With a well calculated rebranding strategy, you will be stealing customers who want to be stolen. No one hates to be in a professional elegant business. If what it takes to get more customers is to spend some money on rebranding, go for it.
Tip: Be original, unique and don’t be afraid of experimenting with what is cheaply available in your rebranding. This will make your business look like it just got a million dollar facelift while in the real sense you used a small amount of money.
“I’ve got to try that new massage parlor (enter your business)”, this is a common thing people say when they see something that appears to be new or rebranded. “Did you see the improvement on the salon, I have to get my nails done there, and I hear the place looks awesome” well, they could be talking about your business. This is how you steal customers from your competitors through rebranding and a facelift. You only need to make consumers want to buy from you.
Though you are stealing, you still have to uphold good business ethics. You do not need to shoot your competitor’s horse to get the passengers to jump onto your wagon. Instead, you just need to drive by with a limousine and everyone on the wagon will want a minute in the limo. As much as you want more customers in your business, you should make it a choice affair. Instead of tarnishing your competitor’s name online and offline, give their customers an option, a better option.
When consumers are presented with two similar products with different packaging, they will go for the one that looks more professional and projects high quality. You only need to wrap your business in a presentable gift wrapper in terms of branding and serve your products and services on a better plate. If you make your business and its operations better, the stealing of customers from your competitors will not need guns and masks, they will simply walk to your business. And that, my friends, is how to outsmart your competitors and take home their customers.