Tackling 2022’s Marketing Challenges Head-on: Maintaining a competitive advantage￼
With the internet allowing consumers to shop from anywhere, competition is at an all-time high, and your brand must not only compete with local competitors but also globally. With such a large choice for consumers, your brand must consider how you gain a competitive advantage and then maintain this. The FMCG market, in particular, is very saturated and therefore, it isn’t easy to stand out. Brands must work hard to differentiate themselves from their competition to position themselves as the number one choice.
Why is a competitive advantage beneficial for my brand?
Apart from the apparent higher number of sales compared to your competitors. Holding the competitive advantage gives your brand better profit margins and market control. To put it simply, a competitive advantage is what makes a consumer choose your business over another.
Holding a competitive advantage will give your brand the upper hand compared to your competitors but maintaining this is not easy.
How do I maintain a competitive advantage?
Once you have gained the competitive advantage, your brand will need to continue to work at maintaining this to continue to grow your market share. If your brand offers something unique that cannot be found elsewhere, you must put steps in place to hold that advantage. When selling online price becomes significantly less important as there is so much transparency around competitive pricing. This has created a movement therefore away from price being your competitive advantage and thus it must be more.
Share your knowledge
Show authority in your expertise by sharing your knowledge. While many people may question this when considering maintaining a competitive advantage. Sharing your knowledge can be a great way to gain the attention and trust of your consumers. You can speak at events, do online webinars or share your expertise through your site. This is effective for both B2B and FMCG brands on different levels.
Define your purpose
This way, consumers will know what they are getting, and if you have a niche, your purpose should showcase this. A consistent brand purpose throughout your branding will shine through from the office to your products. It will attract consumers, but you will also find that talented staff will want to come and work for you; hence your skill level amongst your staff increases again, raising your competitive advantage.
Defining your purpose is something your brand should continue to look at over time as you grow and expand. It will remind you who you are as a brand and what you want to achieve. To stand out and differentiate yourself from a competitor, your purpose must be seen and felt by consumers.
Go the extra mile
Well, at least make your consumers feel this way. Thinking of ways your brand stands out from your competitors and going the extra mile with customer service will see consumers returning to you. Whilst it may seem like a good idea is to become the cheapest, sometimes this is not always the best choice. Consumers are happy to pay more for a product or service if they feel it is worth it, and depending on your target audience, some will not want to pay the lowest fee. Consumers pay for the whole experience, so if you can find the perfect balance of cost, service and product, you are bound to hold an advantage over your competitors.
In today’s market, most brands offer some form of benefit to compete. But for this to be beneficial for your brand, the consumer must feel your product benefits them more than your competitors. This must be strong enough to influence their purchase decision towards you. However, it is important to note that benefits can quickly become expected, so your brand must switch things up to keep the consumer feeling the benefits without you needing to keep adding more.
Understand your audience
By understanding your audience, you can manage their expectations and deliver. In some cases, you can even up their expectations; if you go above what they expect, aka what your competitor offers, you will have an advantage over them. Keeping up to date with the ever-changing trends of consumer habits and behaviours will allow you to stay on top. Depending on your brand, a trend forecast may be beneficial to guide you to ensure you can stay ahead of your competitors.
Invest in your team
Having a team that works well together is far more important than having a team of experts with the highest degrees. Whilst this is nice, finding the proper connection between your staff is far more important.
Investing in your current team to ensure they have the experience and knowledge to continue to grow and investing in more team members will allow you to expand your business, keeping your competitive edge.
Become easily accessible
Your audience must be able to get hold of your product or service easily and quickly. Problems stopping them in the marketing funnel will see them choose a more convenient brand. Especially with an FMCG product, consumers must be able to get their hands on your products wherever they go. The ease of purchase will see your brand being chosen over others as consumers can rely on your brand. If your products are sparsely available, consumers will quickly move to another brand or product to serve their needs that are easier to get.
Sampling is one great way of getting your product into the hands of consumers. To ensure that consumers begin to purchase your product you must first give them the opportunity to try it. Innocent CEO famously remarked how the first purchase was the hardest to get and after that, as long as your product is good, they will come back.
This is where understanding your audience comes in once again. By understanding the shopping habits of your target audience, your brand can ensure your products are available from locations guaranteed to have a high footfall. This may differ between communities, so check out our latest blog – how to market your mainstream brand to ethnic groups.
Maintain competitive advantage with GottaBe!
Look no further! GottaBe! offer tailored solutions to your marketing challenges, and with such a comprehensive service offering, we can help you with whatever you need. We have a strong team of industry experts; we also have long standing relationships with agencies and brands across the UK. Contact the team today to find out how we can help!