We know that competition is part of a business. Before most businesses commence operations, business owners have a target audience and market they intend to operate. Many businesses provide similar products or services, and they target the same audience of customers. As such, business owners are aware of the competition that exists in the markets they play. Healthy market competition is fundamental to having a well-functioning economy. Research has shown that since companies must compete for customer, this process force company to offer the best in exchange for the loyalty of customer by way of lowing prices, increasing the quality of product or services, introducing variety to meet different customers’ taste, and constantly working on more innovations.
Lately, I find it disturbing to hear of businesses that wound up due to a lack of a coping mechanism to adapt to their competitive environment. Why should the existence of competition be the reason some companies fold up? How come businesses cannot proffer solutions to situations known from the start? Does this mean that most business owners do not carry out a proper feasibility study before venturing into businesses? What should businesses do to strive for healthy market competition? Let us deliberate on coping mechanisms needed to stay in business even if it will cause a business to keep reviewing its competitive priorities from time to time.
Businesses need to be reminded that no matter how sophisticated and expensive a business process is, if it does not achieve the expected objective or does not give maximal value, it is not efficient and it must be reviewed. Companies compete in areas such as cost, time, safety, quality, flexibility, and so on. Smaller businesses cannot compete at every level with the market leaders; therefore, they need to review their processes and decide on what to compete with after determining what counts to the target customer.
Delivering excellent customer service. Small business owners can develop stronger and more personal relationships with their customers. This is a key advantage as many people consider customer service as a factor when deciding whether to do business with a company. Customers appreciate relationships as it makes them feel like a king.
Make improvements based on customers’ feedback. Receiving constructive feedback from customers is a positive sign that some customers are interested in your brand and are willing to remain should you improve on the brand. This feedback helps to identify procedures and processes to improve business.
Improve your design. When it comes to branding there is a high tendency that people will judge a book by its cover. A great logo and captivating product package can help gain positive attention. Engage skilled professionals to elevate your brand. “Design is the silent ambassador of your brand” – Paul Rand.
For most companies, strategic alliance happens to be the final straw when other primary attempts to gain competitive advantage are not effective. A strategic alliance is an arrangement between companies to mutually achieve an object while they both retain their independence. Here, businesses pool resources together to meet the targeted audience. “Partnering is the quickest, most effective way to re-engineer a business” – Curtis E. Sahakian.