The reason I say you need to look at competition differently is because most of us or many will blame competitors or competition for anything. Lack of sales, anything like that.
But I want you to just turn it around a bit. Because there is no competition. There if you’re thinking of another company in your niche as competition, that’s you. It’s all in your head. It’s why are you worried about them?
Let’s use coffee as an example. There is a Starbucks or Costa Coffee. They are everywhere, on every corner, we even have coffee at home and at work.
You think why would they do that? It’s not competition. Not the way they look at it. It means there is a market for more than one coffee shop and it’s just down to them to figure out how to win the biggest slice.
So that’s what I want you to think. They are not competitors. They are people doing the same who can show you either how badly it can be done. So how not to do it or how well it can be done to learn by the good things that they do.
So from those coffee companies, why not look at each of them and write down what they do well and what they do badly.
Why not go and mystery shop?
You know go and have a cup of coffee and muffin or whatever in each of them and compare, how do they talk to you? Where they make you wait? How long do they make you wait? What’s it like waiting? How big is the queue? Does everyone know where to queue? Did you know where to get everything? Was it easy on the prices?
All that kind of stuff. Was the menu clear? Were they polite? Did it look clean?
Write down the good, the bad and then make sure that when you do it, because you already know there’s enough to go around, then you do it, you do it better than them, and if they are doing this that way, change yours to be like that but a but bitter.
And you pick all the best bits and you remove all of the bad bits; you’ve got a recipe for success.
And that’s not competition. They are colleagues. They are people in your niche. They have the same problems as you.
Get to Know Them
Personally I think you are best off getting to know them. They, you’ll be surprised, do you think they are your enemy?
They are your friend of all the people in the world who understand what you’re going through. Your struggles, your problems, your issues. You’re good days, your bad days. It’s the guy that runs the same business as you. Now he or she has the same.
They haven’t come to you, why not you be the bigger person. And invite them out for a cup of coffee, even if it’s not a coffee shop and have a chat and just when they say, when they are all suspicious and they say ‘how can I help?’
Just be open, say we are in the same industry and I just thought it will be great if we could just get to know each other and see if we’ve got something in common, how can we help each other out. Nothing suspicious.
Don’t want to sell anything, don’t want to ask any information. I just want to buy you a cup of coffee or a lunch. If they say no, find another one. But I bet, you’ll be surprised, and then you are going to learn.
This is not for Intel. This is to have someone to talk to. It is very very important to have a coach or a mentor and a competitor can be someone like that.
Because again you’ll find for instance, when you’re buying coffee. You are struggling to get it to here, and you say, ‘Oh no we’ve got a supplier’, and then you might find, you let them access to your supplier, because they’ll let you have access for something else. You can do some little bartering.
You might say I don’t get any of those. You say I don’t either. Let’s combine get it together, and save on the shipping. Or get bulk buying.
You might end up as friends. I have people in the old fire trade who would appear to be arch enemies. Who ended up as friends. I have been to their weddings, I have been to there funerals. Sad thing. But this is what I mean. But it’s not competition.
Now this is what I always refer to Tony Robbins because he politely calls them stories. It’s what I call excuses and everyone else does. But what’s your story?
Why do you say, ‘Oh we can’t do this because Amazon’ and I have this in my trade. We sell fire safety gear online. Our competitors say you’re ruining the trade. They contact our suppliers. And say, ‘Why’re you supply them? Well you stop supplying because they are ruining it.’
Ruining it means what we are actually doing and unfortunately I am sorry to say, what amazon are doing are giving the customer what the customer wants. Which is more choice, more convenience, faster deliveries and a lower price for the exact same thing and better service.
Now of course, if you were having high prices and that’s taking away your profits, I am sorry but that’s because you’re thinking it’s all about you. It’s the customer. So that’s not competition.
That is somebody who is giving the customer what the customer wants. And I am sorry if it affects you. But that is your excuse when in reality, you might you know it’s difficult to say, you can do what amazon can do. But we do so we are in a B2B. Amazon don’t really go B2B markets.
You need to niche down and nail that customer. But database, so they think you are the experts. The one to go to, that there is no competition. You are the best. And you can do it my friend.
Instead of thinking of competition, just expand your offering. Remember the customer, as long as you are giving the customer what they want, then it doesn’t matter who else is cheaper. Who else costs more, because people will only be interested in the value you are giving them. And that doesn’t matter what anyone else does.
So make videos, update your website regularly. Create a list, contact your customers via email, be on social media, be available, take calls. Be open. Have free evenings. Meet them at, have meetups. Meet with customers. Give them reasons to think you are wonderful. And there is no competition. Make sense.
Drive Time Podcast
Chris has actually rebranded, pretty much has Youpreneur. Now in Youpreneur, they are going to probably show you just what you will learn from me in the Owners Club.
Although I think its $99 month. And ours is only 29 pounds. But anyway that’s a competition. That’s a competitor. Why on earth would I tell you about that? Why would I send you off to someone else?
Anyway go listen. Chris is fantastic. Simple as that. If you haven’t heard of Chris Ducker, read his book Virtual freedom. Fantastic guy. Follow everything he does, specially that podcast.