Picture this scenario: your business is ticking along quite happily when, all of a sudden, a rival company appears on the scene, offering a similar product or service to you. It is normal to feel threatened by their sudden presence – instinctive even. After all, your audience and customer base is also their audience and customer base, right?
But what if you don’t have to be sworn enemies? Might it even be beneficial to embrace the competition as being healthy, valuable… and even necessary? Because, let’s face it, the chance of you forevermore being the only person offering your product or service in your local area is slim to none. In which case, perhaps it’s time to put down the familiar script that tells you “competition = bad”, and start writing your own, new, more helpful story: one in which you both not only survive but thrive. Read on to discover the six ways in which a spot of healthy competition can be good for business.
Competition kickstarts growth and evolution
Think about it for a moment: if there was no competition within business, there would be nothing to drive progression or improvement. The fact is, competition forces businesses to grow and evolve which, in turn, helps to create ever-better products and services for the consumer. The point is, competition is vital for business. While it can be easy if you are the only one in your area offering a particular service, sitting in your comfort zone, never doing anything different or trying anything new will not help you offer your customers the best experience. Yes, change and competition can be scary but they are definitely concepts to embrace.
You might learn something new.
So there is a new, rival business in town. Great! Look at what they are doing: now is the time to do some research. By monitoring your competitor’s set-up and evaluating their strengths and weaknesses, you can gain an insight into what has been working well for your own business…and what might need improving. What can you learn from them? How can you use this newfound knowledge to further your own growth?
It can increase consumer interest in your product or service.
Sometimes, people may not realise they could benefit from a particular product or service until you show it to them. As you might have discovered already, if you’re out there on your own pitching your idea to potential clients, it can be a tricky sell (and lonely slog too). But if there is a competitor business out there pitching similar services or products, consumers are more likely to take notice. After all, if there are several choices for them on the market, they will probably infer that perhaps they really do need a product or service like yours, after all.
It can help you increase your social media reach
Does your competitor have social media channels? Then it’s time to engage with them. By liking and commenting on their posts, you’re going to increase your own reach on social media. You are also telling the social media platform what type of business you are and therefore what type of people are likely to be interested in your content. The best bit? Your competitor is likely to follow suit, returning the favour by interacting with your content, too. It’s a social media win win! Do keep you identity your own though: potential customers need to be able to see what makes your business unique from the competition!
You can refer each other
Your business might be the best it can possibly be but it would be foolish to think you can be all things to all people. The truth is, your product or service is not going to be the best fit for every potential customer. It could well be that you are simply too busy to take on new clients. Being able to refer to a competitor business not only benefits the customer, but it makes you look helpful, friendly and professional too. In turn, if your competitor is unable to take on new clients in the future, or sees you as a better fit, they might just return the favour.
It gives you a new challenge!
Ultimately, you want your business to be a success. By working alongside your competitor rather than willing them to fail, and by consistently trying to offer the finest product or service for your customers, you will be driving each other to become to best you can be. Isn’t that what a spot of healthy competition is all about?