You’ll be caught in the price-cutting rut as long as your offering is similar to your competitor’s. There are plenty of ways to set yourself apart.
Break from the pack!
Once again I am going to steal shamelessly … of course, with the speaker’s permission!
This week I had the opportunity, through The Executive Connection, to listen to an excellent presentation, this time on strategies to compete in a copycat market.
I wrote about culture last week, so I feel the issue presents a good continuum! The topic was relevant to all chief executives struggling with the commoditisation of their product or service. I know that would affect large numbers of CEOs!
As the speaker Oren Harari www.harari.com pointed out, one of the great challenges for business today is to perpetually de-commoditise so that the business offering is fresh and compelling. As he explained, in the business world today there is relentless commoditisation that in the end can only lead to a price war and declining margins.
He put forward some great strategies for dealing with this issue. Here are just a few:
- Innovate – at the back and front end of the business.
- Lead your customer to a new and worthwhile place.
- Wow your customers. A satisfied customer is no longer a viable goal; we need to set the bar higher.
- Move from responding to leading.
- Respect the unique needs of each customer.
- Help your customers discover their unique needs and then tailor products and services to satisfy them.
- Employ people with the right mindset.
- Get rid of bureaucracy and layers of management.
- Train sales people to become researchers of customer needs.
- Be agile.
- Search for an unfair competitive advantage!
- Dominate your sector of the market – not through size necessarily but through the power of your offer.
- Think partner, with customers and suppliers.
He had some great models to work with to ensure that you de-commoditise and deal with ideas to get your business out of the price-reducing rut. I will expand further next week on these. Let’s see if anyone is interested!
(Ed: What a coincidence! Oren Harari is this week’s lunch with an entrepreneur. To hear more about being a leader in today’s economy listen to our interview with Oren Harari or read the transcript.)
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