Art of Marketing
Chapter 08. Gaining a Competitive Advantage
No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up. – Regina Brett
As we said, the purpose of marketing is to create awareness
of “unique added value” in the minds of customers.
To survive and thrive,
every product and service offered needs to have some distinct
and distinct competitive advantage
over its competitors in the market.
Competitive advantage is the key to sales and profit success.
It is essential that you are excellent in a particular area
that customers appreciate.
You have to tell your customers,
“We provide you with the best products
and services in this important area.”
Everyone in your organization needs to know exactly where,
why, and how your company,
products and services outperform other competitors in the market.
If you don’t clearly demonstrate your superiority
over the competition
in a particular market segment,
all you can hope for is survival.
To receive the title of “excellent salesman” you must identify the needs
and wants of the customer. —Zig Ziglar
Revisiting the 80/20 rule
Remember the 80/20 rule?
20% of companies in every industry generate 80% of all profits.
That means 80% of companies in an industry
only make 20% of the profits.
Your main goal is to get in the top 20%
and then move up as fast as you can in a few months or years.
All marketing and business strategies are based on differentiation.
It is based on showing customers exactly
how your products or services are different
and better than any of your competitors in the marketplace.
What is your competitive advantage?
What do you do or offer that sets your products
and services apart from your competitors?
What is your best area?
General Electric’s Jack Welch famously said,
“If you don’t have a competitive advantage, don’t compete.”
Again, clarity is the most important factor in this area.
What is your current competitive advantage?
What is your future competitive advantage?
If you want to get ahead of your competitors,
what competitive advantage should you possess?
If you want to lead your industry in sales and profits,
what competitive advantage do you need?
And most importantly,
what do you need to change immediately to develop and maintain
a competitive advantage that would allow you
to achieve a unique position in the market?
A wise man will make more opportunities than he finds. — Francis Bacon
Black belt qualification
I have been teaching karate at a black belt for many years.
I visited many karate schools and noticed Shotokan Karate the most.
In my opinion, it is one of 10 famous karate schools worldwide
that offer lessons in this martial art.
Then I discovered something very interesting.
Students in other karate schools always claim
that their school is the “top” of all schools.
This view also seems to exist in customers.
Later, I discovered that every client had that mindset.
They always buy what they think
is the best option for them in the market,
at all times.
When a customer buys a product or service,
at the time of the price cut,
they are convinced that the product or service is superior
to all other competitors’ products or services and therefore,
it is their optimal choice.
This conclusion may be based on fact
or perception capitalized
by advertising and promotion.
It can also be the result of price considerations,
which are very important to Walmart customers,
and based on many other factors.
However, customers only make a purchase
when they are convinced that shopping is the wisest choice
they have made at the time based on all factors being considered.
The salesperson has to optimistically think
that the customer can pay for that product or service. —Zig Ziglar
Unique and different
This brings us back to the concept of uniqueness and difference.
You can make the product you offer outperform your competition
so that the customer will say,
“To me, this is the best product or service I have ever been offered?
” You shape your own competitive advantage
– why customers buy your product or service
– in terms of the benefits,
or outcomes that customers get
from purchasing your product or service,
you they wouldn’t experience
if they used your competitor’s product or service.
Discovering, developing and promoting your uniqueness is crucial
to achieving market dominance and superior profitability.
This is sometimes referred to
as a “unique selling proposition”.
It’s what helps you deliver customer value
that no other competitor can,
and it’s what makes your product
or service a more compelling option
than anything else available to appear on the market.
You get rich connecting with opportunities
that can produce and multiply money.
You don’t get rich saving money.
Missing opportunities is
what costs people money. – Grant Cardone
Unique selling proposition
This recommendation should be made clear in all your promotional materials.
It becomes the focal point
or core of all your advertising and marketing efforts.
That’s the only message you’re trying to convey
to potential customers at all costs.
Marketing success is the fruit of your constant thinking
to achieving and maintaining a sustainable competitive advantage.
This is the heart of every successful business.
All the companies that have a clear competitive advantage,
a sharp difference
from the competition will definitely be in the 20% group.
if you don’t have a competitive advantage,
if your products or services are unremarkable,
the only way you can sell them is at a discount.
You will soon fall into the group of 80% of businesses
that are about to hit the bottom
due to reduced product prices.
In the end,
you don’t get a single penny of the profit.
Most of these companies eventually go bankrupt
due to not being able to compete in the market.
Don’t let yourself fall to that end.
The best strategy for you
and your company is
to focus on improving the quality of your products
and services to demonstrate superiority.
Once you have this awareness,
you will sell more products,
at a higher price,
with a lower cost of customer acquisition and of course,
more sales and referrals more customers
from loyal customers than any other strategy.
The entrepreneur in us sees opportunities everywhere we look,
but many people see only problems everywhere they look. — Michael Gerber