When is it acceptable to mind someone else’s business? When you’re a small business owner on a mission to study your competition. Researching your competition is an important step towards the success of your own business. If you’re wondering why, here are some reasons:
1. Learn from Your Competitors’ Success
Just as you can learn from what your competitors are doing wrong, you can also learn from what they’re doing right. They might be using methods or systems that you may not have thought about, or offering their products in a way that you find appealing. You can draw inspiration from the things you admire about your competitor. Just don’t try to copy everything they do, so that you don’t lose your uniqueness and your authenticity.
2. Get a Clearer Understanding of What Your Target Audience Expects From You
Watch how your competitor interacts with and serves their audience. this will give you an idea of what your own audience will expect from you. You will see first hand what kind of interaction works. Do they like it formal or casual? What platform are they most active and forthcoming on? etc.
3. Find Out Where Your Competitors Are Falling Short And How You Can Do Better
When you study your competition, you get to see where they are falling short. This is usually evident through customer complaints on their pages and forums. You can also join their mailing lists, try out their products or services, and try out their customer support. It gives you a better idea of what to avoid in your own business and how to improve your services.
4. Identify and Improve Your Unique Selling Proposition
Your Unique Selling Proposition (USP) is what makes you stand out from others in your industry. When you study your competitors, you get to see what you have in common and where you differ. You can then make sure that you’re properly marketing the unique aspects of your business. Your unique selling point is crucial to connecting you with your ideal customer. You may not know what sets you apart from the others if you don’t actively study your competition.
5. Figure Out What and How To Make Offers To Your Target Audience
Studying your competitor shows you the kind of offers that your target audience prefers to get. They may react differently to different mediums, different price points, different seasonal offers, etc. This helps you when you’re planning your own offers, reducing trial and error. It can also help you plan a better offer than your competitors.
6. Study Your Target Audience Through Their Communities
A great way to study your competitors is to join their communities. This also gives you the opportunity to observe and interact with their audience. You get to ask questions and find out how to fine-tune your offerings to match your ideal customer’s pain point. You can even build relationships and get more support when you launch your own products or services.
7. Find Opportunities For Collaboration
Your competitors are not your enemies. You share a common goal with them, and you all can win through collaboration. Studying your competitors lets you find opportunities to collaborate with them, such as through guest posting, featuring on their podcasts, bundle offers, giveaways etc. This can greatly grow your traffic and expose you to a much wider audience. You can also collaborate by complementing each other’s services.
There are many different ways for you to study your competition. While it’s important to pay attention to your business, you need to keep abreast of what others in your industry are doing, so that you don’t get left behind.