Do you have your finger on the “pulse” of your market? What does it take to dominate a market? Let’s look at Southwest Airlines. Although it took years of fighting the competition in court, it also fought it in the domain of ideas. It flies from small local airports, has lower fares, they offer peak and off peak pricing, and opened the market back in the 70’s to a whole new market of passengers (people who could not previously afford to fly).
I might suggest that in this fast paced world of the 21st Century we need to get past the fears and begin to look for new potential avenues of growth. It starts with not only knowing what business you are in, but also knowing your deliverables.
To stand out in your market there needs to be a level of interaction that you consistently put forth, and your success in attracting clients is correlated to how clearly and consistently you communicate about your business. There is power when you dominate and influence your market.
Unlike product driven companies, service businesses often feel limited in what they can do to stand out. As a service business the most likely advantage point is establishing a personal brand; that takes visibility, trust and leadership. Do you need to be have a narrower target market, or be known in the media as an expert? If you are not there, what has to change?
Association is another way to get recognition in the market place. One of my clients had seen the poor working conditions of workers in overseas sweat shops. Ethical and Eco friendly manufacturing has come to the forefront of today’s fashion industry. My client established his jewelry business, www.VaVaVida.com only selling “fair-trade” jewelry (jewelry made by independent artisans). In addition a portion of profits are donated to organizations that help raise awareness about the human cost of the fast fashion industry.
The fear that many business owners have around refocusing their business is that it is difficult, complicated and mysterious. And many academics would have you to believe that this is the case. If you understand the customers and clients you now serve, you must be willing to look outside for either new things you can be offering or enhancing what you offer.