When it comes to industries ripe with products, it’s all about highlighting your point of difference and standing out. There are 5 key elements often emphasised in marketing.
• Unique Product or Technology – Do you offer a product that is truly unique? Was your company first to bring a product to market? If so, you could use the first-to-market approach to emphasise your experience in the field? Or perhaps you’ve got a product that it is underpinned by a technology that’s unique and possibly patented by your company?
• Unparalleled Service – Do you offer a service that’s incomparable in the industry? This could be a consultation service delivered by consultants with prestigious accreditation or recognised as experts in the industry. In some cases it could be a packaging of service as a product. Or even a combination of a product and service into one solution? Whichever it may be, make sure you give the service a powerful name to keep it memorable and top of mind.
• Solving a problem – At times, your product or service may have so many unique features that it’s difficult to choose the one element or dilute the impact by trying to highlight too many features. One way to avoid diluting the features is by emphasising how your offer solves a problem for your target customers. How does your offer make life easier for your target customers? Does it save time? Does it make processes more efficient? Or does it uncover issues, which in turn helps them make better business decisions?
• Cost – Is your offer set at unbeatable prices unmatched by competitors? Another way of looking at the price war is by outlining what a customer may get from a set price versus another supplier who may charge the same price but include fewer features or services in the package. Not many businesses can afford to use the price element to differentiate their business. Unless you have economies of scale and can produce or manufacture your products in bulk, it is often difficult to lower your price, whilst still maintaining a healthy profit that will sustain the growth of your business.
• Guarantee – Can you offer a guarantee so strong, which will truly differentiate you from other suppliers in the industry? This tactic is a bold move and not many suppliers have the confidence to do this. But if you can guarantee results, then it’s certainly one clear way to stand out. However, before you delve into this, make sure you seek legal advice to ensure you’re covered from all angles.
How to uncover the differences?
If the differences aren’t as obvious to you, then there are some actions you can take to help you uncover your competitors’ value propositions and how your business is different from them.
• Observe your customer base – Identify any commonalities between them. This will help you discover if you’re solving a similar problem that a particular group has. Or perhaps, you’ll uncover that your product or service is more suited to a niche market.
• Survey your customer base or target market – Speak to your clients either over the phone or hand out a short questionnaire as they enter your storefront. Ask them questions about what they like, what they don’t like, or even why they would recommend your company.
• Study your competitors – Examine your main competitor’s websites and identify their main value propositions. To do this, pay a close at the adjectives they use to describe their products and services, as this will often give you clear insight into how they differentiate themselves in the marketplace.
ReachLocal specialises in helping businesses generate more profit from their online marketing activities. ReachLocal can work with your business to get more consumers discovering, contacting and buying from you.