With the beginning of a new year, many of us will use it as an opportunity to make a fresh start. That might mean setting a resolution to make changes in your life, or something a little simpler like spending time tidying your home and throwing out things that you don’t use anymore.
The new year can also be a great opportunity for your business to make a fresh start. It’s really easy to get caught up in the rush of excitement that occurs around the last few months of the year. The holiday rush is often the busiest time of the year for many industries and for those that don’t see this huge surge in custom, it almost always becomes a period when people take their feet off the gas after a busy year.
So, with January upon us, now is a great time to prepare for a year of business success in 2022.
One way to do that is to spend some time working on your marketing and come up with ways to make sure you stand out from the crowd. The economic environment we find ourselves in today means that there is fierce competition in almost every market, no matter whether you’re a small business or a giant conglomerate, where you are in the world, what you sell, or who you sell it to.
If you’d like to improve your business in this area in 2022, then here are some of the steps you can take.
Offer Something Unique
In most industries, there are dozens or even hundreds of different businesses offering the same products and services. You only need to look at online marketplaces like Amazon to find listing after listing for near-identical products with only the logo changed.
In situations like this, a business’s only option is to compete on price as a way to stand out. This can work well in some cases, but if they’re all buying the same product and just changing the logo, their costs will be roughly the same. Therefore, the company selling the cheapest option will be making the least profit per unit but may increase its sales. While it may be possible to offset the lower margins with increased revenue, it is also likely to set off a price war that forces all of the sellers to race to the bottom.
Instead, it can help to sell something unique. This might be an entirely new product or a different take on an existing one.
In the online casino industry, there is a lot of competition. Therefore, to stand out, companies have created unique variants of classic games and developed entirely new video slots like Diamond Stars, Stars Megaways, and Stars Lineup that are exclusive to their website and app. In doing so, they incentivize customers to stay with them if they want to retain access to these titles.
Classical economic theory suggests that most people seek to maximize the “utility” they get from their purchases. This means that they’re open to spending more money on a product or service if they receive more value (or “utility”) in return.
One way to offer more utility to your customers is to be more convenient than any of your competitors.
Convenience can come from being located physically closer, offering to deliver a product directly to them, serving or delivering faster, or removing some of the hassles that comes with buying your product or service.
Food delivery services are a great example of this. It is more expensive to buy take-out food that gets delivered to your home, but it means you avoid the need to walk or drive to a restaurant, place your order, wait for it to be prepared, and then travel home again. Instead, you simply open an app, tap the items you want, pay, and wait for a knock at your door. For some people, the increased cost is worth it as it saves them time and requires less work.
Just like consumers are willing to pay more for convenience, “utility” can be achieved through improved quality. This is why people will pay more for a five-star hotel than a bunk in a hostel room.
While the basic product is the same (somewhere to sleep), the overall experience is very different and, therefore, the premium hotel can charge a higher price to match what it offers.
You can do the same by offering products that are more durable, have a premium feel, or include more features than your competitors. In doing so, you’ll set yourself apart from them and give yourself a competitive advantage.