There are so many choices for your customers. Want them to choose you? Differentiation might be the key to succeed in business.
Yes, the market is getting bigger. But it is also getting very crowded.
That is to say, that whether a company is large or an SME’s, there are a lot of barriers to cross to make it into a market and succeed in business.
According to a research report on barriers for all sized companies, “some barriers to entry to markets are structural depending on market structure, whilst other barriers are strategic, depending on the activities and strategies of incumbents who try to protect their markets.’
However, thanks to all the tools, technologies and experience that we now carry, those barriers are lowering down each time more, which leads us to a crowded market.
Succeed in business after entering is the difficult part
As a result, entering is not the difficult part. Succeeding after finally getting in is. You find yourself competing with a huge amount of other companies in a commoditized market.
But firstly, how do we do know when a market is commoditized?
This word may scare companies and make them think that the only solution is lowing down their prices.
What it means, is that there’s a lack of differentiation in products out there.
A BCG article quoted: “Commoditization occurs when the market perceives products to be substitutable.”
Some companies have adopted this issue as a strategy and have decided to standardize and make low-quality goods. As a result, they could acquire quick profits. A b2b company should think further and be creative in any kind of way so buyers buy their goods and not the competition.
So how do we succeed in a crowded and commoditized market if you decide to go further? This is a whole new world.
According to what I’ve learned as a Fundraiser, cross border expansion & investments specialist for startups & SME’s globally, here are some clues:
Differentiate. Search for product differentiation and apply a product differentiation strategy.
The key is to get noticed by your prospects/customers. How are you getting noticed? How are you reaching your customers differently?
In other words, don’t be better, be different.
2. Innovate in your business
Come up with new products or services. For instance, go after a new segment of the market.
3. Offer to succeed
By delivering great customer experience and/or offering a clear customer value proposition (CVP) you will be remarkable. Offer more, and reach a product differentiation that will position you on top of the rest.
Needless to say, in order to apply these points, you should start first, by identifying customer needs.
As written in a Harvard Business Review Case Study, “developing a customer value proposition starts with an analysis of customers’ needs, competitors’ offerings, and the firm’s strength to be outstanding.”
That’s the only way you could know what they will consider good customer experience, or what do they need so you can come up with it.
In conclusion, they might be different ways to succeed in business but differentiating in any kind of way is above all, the most efficient way to achieve it.
Business Advisor – Angel Investments & Corporate Engagements at IvyCapVentures.com
Country Director for India at Opportunity Network
Founder at Pitchworks