3 Things You Can Learn From Your Competition

3 Things You Can Learn From Your Competition

The thought of your #1 competitor may make you tense up, but if you can see past the red, there’s a lot you can learn about running a business and attracting more customers. Take some time to look over the competition and see what you can glean from them. What exactly can they teach you?

#1 What Your Target Customers Like & Don’t Like in a Company

We hope you’re already reading your own online reviews and responding to all of them (positive & negative), but there’s a lot to be learned from your competitors’ reviews as well.

What are their customers saying about them? What are the good things that come up again and again? The bad things? Use that information to identify what you could implement or focus more on to entice those customers to consider your business.

If your competitors’ customers always rave about how good their cleanup is, make your cleanup process and the lengths you go to to keep your customers’ homes clean a focal point on your website and in your marketing. If your competitors’ customers give low ratings because of poor scheduling experiences, make sure your scheduling process is easy and pleasant for each and every customer.

Listening to your competitors’ customers will give you insight into what to do more of and what not to do. And because very few business owners take the time to really reflect on what their customers are saying and implement change, you can count on your competitors to keep making the same mistakes in their business.

Well, let them make those mistakes while you learn from them! You’ll end up with a better business and happier, more loyal customers.

#2 How to Differentiate Yourself

Take a look at your top three competitors and make a list of their similarities and differences. Is there something they all do right? Something they all do wrong?

Spend some time thinking about how they look from the outside, how you compare, and what you could do to differentiate yourself from the pack. Use that in your marketing and on your website to make yourself stand out!

Note: You never want your customers to choose you solely because of price, so make sure that what you choose to focus on is not price-related. As a generalization, price-driven customers are not loyal, and what you want is loyal customers with high customer lifetime values.

#3 Just How Good You Need to Be

Many entrepreneurial minded people have a desire for things to be perfect. We want every little detail to be just right before launching a business, service, or product. But guess what? Your competitors can show you just how good you need to be, and spoiler alert, you don’t have to be perfect.

Look at your best competitors and make a list of things that are important in business — things like customer service, timeliness, cleanliness, and quality. Give each competitor a grade for each factor and figure out how they rate. Do they get a C for timeliness? Then you can start by making sure your timeliness score is a B or higher. Do they get a B for customer service? Then you’ve got to get your customer service up to an A.

Always strive to be your best and offer your best, but start by being better than your competition. Three in five Americans would try a new brand or company for a better service experience, so make sure you’re delivering a better customer experience than anyone else, and keep working to make it better and better.

Go Forth & Conquer

Some of the greatest secrets in life are learned through our successes and failures — but why not learn from those around us? Spend some time reflecting on and learning from the mistakes and successes of your competitors and you’ll reach your goals faster and with less hiccups. It’s a win-win for you and your company!

Standing Out In A Sea Full of Competitors

Standing Out In A Sea Full of Competitors

Everyone has competition – even Google. But the amount of time and space you make for your competitors in your mind and life can be all the difference between healthy competition and unhealthy competition.

Do you find yourself feeling victimized because your competitors are getting some of the business you deserve? Are you preoccupied with what they’re doing instead of with what you’re doing? Well, if you’re focused on what everyone else is doing instead of on what you’re doing, you’ll never stand out in the big, blue sea of competitors.

Here are 4 tips to keep your focus where it belongs — on your business and the services you offer — so you can come out on top.

#1 Highlight the Things You Do Differently

In the service world, the things that make you a better choice than your competitors are not always apparent to potential customers. Perhaps you put down drop cloths and completely protect the home during the service, or require all of your employees to undergo extensive training and certification to ensure better, more thorough, more ethical services.

You know what makes you different and you know you’re the better choice. But if it’s not on your website and the customer hasn’t done business with you before, how will they know?

Highlight the things that set you apart on all of your marketing materials – from your website and brochures to your trucks and social media accounts. You don’t have to harp on it or put down your competitors, just make sure the things you do differently are laid out clearly for those searching for your services.

#2 Educate Your Customers on Why You Do Things Differently

You’ve invested time and resources into training and educating yourself and your team, but your inexperienced, uneducated competitors are still getting service calls that should be yours because they offer cheaper prices. Don’t let it make you angry and defensive.

Your customers and potential customers may simply not know the importance of certification and training or understand why you charge higher prices or do things the way you do. Take the time to educate your customers and potential customers on your website and marketing materials, and explain why you do things differently and why it matters. Most people will be willing to spend more if they know they’re getting better service from certified professionals — as long as they understand what that means for them.

#3 Ask Your Customers for Reviews & Referrals

Another way to stand out from your competition is to let your customers speak for you. More and more people are reading online reviews before choosing a service business to work with (BrightLocal says 82% of people). So make sure you’re asking your customers to review you and spread the word.

If the thought of that makes you uncomfortable, come up with a script and make it part of your service call process. Practice asking customers at the close of service, and emphasize how much you rely on and appreciate referrals, reviews, and feedback.

#4 Personalize Your Brand on Social Media

Thanks to social media, customers can get to know you and your company well before they pick up the phone. Are you using social media effectively? You know the great guys and gals that make up your company – let those searching for your services get to know them as well. If you’re doing it right, potential customers will see who you are and why you’re different, and they’ll want to call you.

Here’s the thing: You have enough to worry about without worrying about your competition. Instead of focusing on them, focus on what you do right, and never stop providing quality, customer-oriented service. With time and consistent effort, you’ll come out on top.