Do you know your competitors? Like really know them beyond just a gripe session about how they’re messing with your customer base, or a woeful realization that their product or service is superior to yours? Knowing your competition inside and out should be a goal of any business owner.

Understanding your competition, what they do and how they work will affect your business strategy immensely. How?

Customer Relationships

Check out reviews and social media to find out what customers are saying and how they’re engaging with the competition. Use these observations as an opportunity to take pointers, or highlight your own great performance.

Offerings

Know what your competitors offer in terms of services and products. Are they offering something such as an online store that makes them more attractive? This isn’t an idea-stealing trick, it’s meant to ensure you’re meeting your customer’s needs and finding ways to be unique in the face of competition.

Pricing

You should know what your competition is charging for services and products similar to yours. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to overhaul your pricing, but it does bring some consequences. For example, if you’re more expensive than the competition, you may need to focus on communicating your value. Or, if you’re the most economic option, you may want to play that up while also reminding customers that you offer quality.

Branding

Notice the style of other brands. Are they funny, serious, easy-going, or environmentally conscious? Who are they addressing? Carve out your own style and try to separate yourself so that your unique voice stands out among the others.

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