Cornwall is a county full of ‘challenger brands’ – essentially a similar business to yours is popping up every five minutes. Here we look at ways to stand strong in the face of ‘new’ competition using defensive marketing…
Keep your customer service game strong
Customers and clients expect to be treated with respect and consideration. There just isn’t the space in a tight business environment to be sloppy or ‘good enough’. It’s your job to be outstanding. As cheesy as it sounds, remember it’s your job to delight your client with fantastic customer service. That doesn’t mean you should over-service to the extent that you’re burning yourself out, it means you’re finding ways to show how much you appreciate their business.
Marketing tip: share your testimonials and positive comments on your marketing materials and social media.
If you’ve dropped the ball, say sorry and do something about it. Don’t just shrug your shoulders and assume you know best. If your client feels you’ve not met their expectations, perhaps you need to consider whether you laid out your intent properly at the start.
Marketing tip: try to suggest a way a project could be handled differently in the future (you make get more work that way too!)
Bring new ideas
We’ve often been told that clients have gone elsewhere because their agency didn’t offer new ideas. The agency would respond ‘they didn’t ask for them’. You are the expert within your business. What ways could your services improve your clients working lives? Considered suggestions will usually be appreciated, even if they’re not taken up. It’s an area that a challenger business will zoom in on and pull the rug out from underneath you.
Marketing tip: ask if you can put together some thoughts and ideas in writing.
Admit your limitations. If you’re unsure about a product or service – tell the customer. You’re aspiring to under promise and over deliver.
People will come to you and use you because you’re the expert. If a challenger pops up, even one with similar skills, products or experience, remember to keep the faith in your own skills set. You’ve been in business this long because you’re good at what you do – try to remember that.
Highlight strengths and weaknesses
Invariably there will be things that you’re better at than your competitor. Highlight these points and make them your strengths, it will also bring to light your challenger’s weaknesses.
Marketing tip: positively promote your strengths. Remind people what you’re good at.
Want to know more?
Follows these links on defending your brand and defensive marketing.
Piece of Cake Communications can help shape marketing strategy, including managing competitors and challengers. Drop us a line to talk about how we can help you…