How to Gain a Competitive Advantage

Why do customers choose you over your Competitors? Do you know?

Competitive advantages are what separate you from your competition. They keep your business alive and growing. In short, they are the reason your business is successful.

The biggest marketing mistake in most companies is the failure to fully reap the benefits of there competitive advantage. Either business think they have a competitive advantage and they don’t, or they have one and don’t even realise it, or they know they have a strong competitive advantage but fail to promote it adequately to their customers and prospects.

If you properly identify and exploit your competitive advantage, it will positively affect your bottom line early and often, because your competitive advantage can in most cases be your sales closer. It answers the customers key question: why should I do business with you ? and what are you offering me that your competition is not?

I like this definition of a competitive advantage:-

“A business is said to have a sustainable competitive advantage when it is implementing a value- creating strategy not simultaneously being implemented by any current or potential competitor and when businesses are unable to duplicate the benefits of this strategy”

One of the strongest competitive advantages a business can have is a unique, memorable and sustainable customer experience. This competitive advantage is very difficult to copy almost everything else can be and is, sometimes in days.

A unique customer experience is almost totally people dependant and requires great leadership, an empowered culture, people who are passionate, enjoy what they do and are encouraged to be innovative.

A competitive advantage like a unique customer experience does not just happen. They require planning, decision-making and implementation. For your business, the reward is a stronger relationship with your customers that leads to greater loyalty and advocacy. For your people it’s the opportunity to work in an organizations that encourages them to be the very best they can be, by providing the resources and allowing everyone to participant in the on-going process.

When did you last have a great customer experience? If your answer is “I cant remember” what would be your customers answer to that question- the same!. If we as customers are not having very many great customer experiences and we aren’t. What a huge opportunity we have to change that and reap the benefits by making your customer experience your key sustainable competitive advantage and the reason your customers are talking about you to others.

Chris Bell is managing director of Customer Experiences; a company that specialises in helping businesses improve the way in which they interact with customers and clients. Click here to contact us.