The Leading Edge: How to Gain Competitive Advantage

The Leading Edge: How to Gain Competitive Advantage

Once brand loyalty is established, loyal customers usually stick around for the long-haul. But getting to that point is a tough, complex process that involves implementing many different methods to give your business a leading edge over the competition.

In this post, you will find out how to make your target customer choose your business over your competitor; how to make your business stay unique for your customer; and how your small business can compete against the Giant around the corner. Seven methods to implement that will give your business a competitive advantage are:

  • Have a unique selling point (What is it you have to offer that is unique to your company?)
  • Understand the needs of your target customers (also, understand how your target customer’s needs can evolve over time. For instance, their needs changed during the COVID crisis, and successful business owners were able to adapt to the situation.)
  • Make a positive difference in the community (volunteer on a regular basis so you can get your name out there.)
  • Produce content that is engaging and impactful (blog posts, emails, newsletters, etc.). Make your content pop!
  • Ensure your brand has a unique voice and message (something that resonates with your target consumer and that is specific to your brand, making it easily recognizable.)
  • Perform a competitor analysis on your top competition (not just online, but also local businesses.)
  • Create a stress-free and convenient customer experience where the customer feels that he/she is in control of the buying experience and getting something in return of high value

Offer a Unique Customer Value Proposition/Selling Point

Every company needs a distinct value proposition—something of worth that they offer the customer. According to one article, “Understanding the need of customers and what your brand is offering to them is very important. A customer’s benefit is calculated excluding the purchasing cost.”  Is your target customer getting a “good deal” in what they purchase from you, or are they getting the best value? There’s a distinct difference.

What is it about your offering that is a step above the competitor’s offering? For instance, sometimes a company will offer up an add-on with a purchase, such as a free guide. This in turn ups the value for the consumer. Another article goes on to say: “We see a marketing offering as having two elemental characteristics: its value and its price. Thus, raising or lowering the price of a market offering does not change the value that such an offering provides to a customer. Rather, it changes the customer’s incentive to purchase that market offering.” As a business owner, you must determine what is valuable to the consumer, not to you. Your value proposition may seem like a great deal to you, but if it doesn’t meet the needs of your consumer, trash it and keep brainstorming!

Understand Your Customers’ [Evolving] Needs

Understanding your target customer’s present needs is only the first half of determining their needs from a holistic perspective. As a business, you also need to adapt to their changing, future needs. This requires comprehensive planning and preparation on the part of the company. Your customers’ needs can and will evolve over time. For instance, most customers’ needs changed during the COVID crisis, and successful business owners were able to adapt to the situation. They prepared themselves for the unexpected!

Make a Positive Difference in Your Community

How can a business make a difference in their community so that consumers notice their positive impact, and want to know more about that brand? There are a few great ways to volunteer and get involved in order to give your business a competitive advantage over the leading contender and get your name “out there.” First, you can give to a local charity or food bank. Second, your team can volunteer for a beach clean-up day or to serve food at a local shelter. Third, your company can host a free workshop for other local businesses. There really is no strict rule as to how your business can get involved in the community. Just have fun while making a difference!

Make Your Content Pop!

To give your business a competitive advantage, you need to be producing content on a regular basis that is impactful, engaging, and offers true value to your target audience. This content can come in the form of landing pages, blog posts, newsletters, and any other marketing materials that are relevant to your company. According to Convrgdm.com, “Having a great writer on your marketing team is invaluable to boosting the discovery of your brand. You want someone who can engage your target audience and persuade them to invest in your product or service without actually asking them to buy it.”

Ensure Your Brand Has a Unique Voice and Message

Both your brand’s voice and message should resonate with your target customers. They both should be specific to your brand, making it easily recognizable. Your brand’s voice and message are like storytellers, telling your customers the story of what your company is all about and the value proposition you offer. Finding the right voice happens as a result of studying your target customers and determining what they want and need. Does your brand’s message speak to your target audience?  If it doesn’t, your marketing efforts are futile, and you can forget about gaining a competitive advantage.

Perform a Competitor Analysis

As a business, you should be studying the competition so you can level the playing field. Routinely performing a competitor analysis will help you determine your company’s pricing, value proposition, customer needs, and marketing strategy. According to businessnewsdaily.com, a competitor analysis should “examine your competitors’ features, market share, pricing, marketing, differentiators, strengths, weaknesses, geography, culture and customer reviews.”

Create the Perfect Customer Experience

Create a stress-free and convenient customer experience where the customer feels he/she is in control of the buying experience (because ultimately, he or she is) and is getting something in return of high value. Providing excellent customer service is only part of the customer experience, but its importance cannot be overstated. Be honest and open about your products up front and create a channel of communication between you and the buyer so he/she can feel comfortable about asking questions. Also, make the “check-out” process easier by providing purchasing options like Apply Pay or Google Pay. Streamlining the customer experience will make a happy customer, and a happy customer is a loyal customer.

Give Your Business a Leading Edge

Are you ready to give your business a competitive advantage over the Giant on the block? To recap, your company should be implementing the following seven methods to give itself a leading edge:

  1. Offer a unique customer value proposition/selling point
  2. Understand your customers’ present needs and be able to adapt to their evolving needs
  3. Make a positive difference in your community
  4. Make your content engaging and impactful
  5. Ensure your brand has a unique voice and message
  6. Perform a Competitor Analysis
  7. Create the perfect customer experience

If you are finding it difficult to begin the implementation process or if you are not seeing the results you would like to see, perhaps it’s time to consider the help of a business consultancy. Aepiphanni Business Consulting is comprised of experienced business-minded individuals committed to helping struggling businesses succeed. You can reach out to us at any time for an initial consultation.

About Aepiphanni

Aepiphanni is a business consultancy that works with values-driven entrepreneurs seeking to organize, optimize or expand their business models. Your company’s excellence is our end goal, and we achieve this through our vision and messaging and the implementation of proven, holistic business strategies, thereby enhancing your business’s performance so you can win. Our entrepreneurial, multidisciplinary team works with clients to develop differentiating solutions and provide direction focused on lasting, strategic results. We exist to help our clients CREATE | DESIGN | BUILD extraordinary businesses.

Interested in learning more about our consultancy services? To contact us, click here.

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