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Are You Guilty of Making This One BIG Mistake?

Apr 17, 2008
Do you dread your competition? Are you scared your competitors will lure business away?

Long ago, I learned competition is a good thing. Why? It means there are so many consumers wanting a particular product or service that demand warrants a new vendor entering the industry. In fact, as competition develops, word spreads about the service and more demand builds. The process becomes a feeding frenzy.

Take the example of high-tech. In no particular order, there was development of dial-up access to computers, DSL, Cable, T1, VOIP, cell phones, search engines, and IPOD. Slowly but surely new technologies developed after the original was introduced, improvements made and new players came onto the scene. It is now difficult to remember a time when computers or cell phones did not exist or contemplate that less fortunate areas do not have access to these. The point is there is severe competition in these fields but companies are thriving.

The picture was just painted for big companies in big industries, but what can entrepreneurs do to handle the competition?

1. Key your eye on the competition. Welcoming competition does not mean you should give away trade secrets or ignore the competition. However, it does mean you need to be Smart about the competition. Being smart means know who you come up against most of the time when selling your service. How are you similar, different and what is unique about how you operate? You need to research your competition in order to strategically position your business.

2. Join forces with the competition. If some of your services overlap but others are slightly different, are you able to refer one another in the areas where you differ?

For instance two companies may specialize in marketing services but one has its strength online and the other offline in collateral. Or two agents for book publishing may represent two opposite services such as that of the traditional publisher versus self-publishing. In either example, the competing businesspeople could easily become a resource for one another.

3. Learn from the competition. If you are planning to host a workshop or plan a tele-seminar, attend one that your competition coordinates. It is against the law to copy their information, but you will want to make note of how they attract people to their classes, their processes and deliverables. Note their strengths and weaknesses and how you might be able to improve your intended class.

4. Help the competition. This is a strange concept for those coming from the corporate world. But savvy entrepreneurs realize by holding out a helping hand to others will bring about a chain of hands climbing to the top of the mountain.

Have you had success speaking and selling product to a particular group? Let other speakers know about your success, share the contact information and write an email of introduction. This will prompt others to do the same for you. Just as competition promotes business, so does a helping hand (most of the time).

5. Refer business to the competition. This tactic is for those people with a sense of humor. If you have a client you do not like, find a match among your competitors and pass the contact quickly.

My Story:
This is a tale of the heads of two complementary companies. Company 1 offered many services while Company 2 was just starting out and only had one complementary service to offer. The two officials worked together toward a common goal of helping their clients.

To the dismay of Company 1, Company 2 grew in size and service offerings. Some services began to overlap while others remained complementary. Company 1 grew scared, halted all business activity with Company 2, and spread warnings to others to do the same.

Company 2 took the high road, and began developing more services for clients. It is clear she has the mindset of not being defeated but succeeding further than Company 1 ever dreamt.

Can you afford to create an atmosphere of distrust and gossip? Follow by example - take the high road and embrace your competition.

Competition running scared means you are on to something good!
About the Author
Elinor Stutz, CEO of Smooth Sale, LLC and Author, trains entrepreneurs, network marketers and salespeople.

Smooth Sale Delivers: Professional Sales Training, Licensing, Coaching, Motivational Speaking and a Full Product Line.

Elinor's book, Nice Girls DO Get The Sale,translated into multiple languages and sells worldwide.

Call 800-704-1499 or Visit our site and get Sales Tips our ezine.
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