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New to Business? Outshine Your Competitors With These 4 Tips

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how to beat your competitors
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Competition in business is natural. There is always another business that offers products similar to what you have, and you can’t avoid it. The wisest step to take is to become the best company among the swarm of like-minded business proprietors. It’s a competition that seeks to prove, once and for all, which company will stand out among the rest. It’s not just a matter of offering the best products, but also winning the hearts and minds of the people you want to be your customers.

Competition, if you really think hard about it, isn’t so bad. It’s actually a good thing since it pushes a company to work harder at beating down its rivals. And, that’s why we’ve gathered the following ideas to help you sprint ahead of your competitors.

Here are four strategies for you to outrun them:

1. Determine who your competitors are

Understanding your competitors can help you and your business stand out. By gathering information about your competitors, you can learn what not to do and what to do best. Identify what your competitor’s strengths are. Analyze your competitor’s strengths. Why do the customers like that company? How good is their product? How great is their service? Better yet, for the product or services that the customers really like, can you offer a similar or better one?

But, before drawing up a plan to defeat your competitors, remember that there are some things your business can’t match or exceed, especially when your business doesn’t have the financial or commercial power to meet the needs of other markets. That’s okay. Just focus on the things that you think your business can excel in.

If your market is not high-end, then don’t push it. At the same time, focus on satisfying the needs of your customer base rather than expend most of your resources on penetrating a new market that may or may not respond positively to your product or service.

You also need to identify your competitor’s weaknesses. Determining your competitor’s weaknesses can provide you an understanding or a realization that some of their weaknesses are your company’s strengths. It’s a learning tool that you can apply to your own business. Good sources of such learning are the negative reviews given by customers. You can learn a lot from customer feedback. From there, you can find a way to turn things around in your favor.

2. Prioritize your customers

As this infographic from Groovy shows, a company who makes customer service a priority gains 60% higher profits versus its rivals, and 81% of customers are more likely to patronize a business after having a good customer experience. Create an amiable welcoming environment in your business. Provide a high-quality product and train your front liners to bring satisfactory customer service. Good customer service can make a customer keep coming back.

Negative reviews will never stop coming. They will keep on hurtling towards you like falling meteorites. On the other hand, feedback from consumers can help you see where you may have done a disservice towards a customer and if there is something you can do to fix it. However, it’s okay to disregard some comments if you knew that you’re on the right path.

Customers may help your business pay its bills, but it doesn’t mean they are always right. Some may never be satisfied. You can’t please them no matter how much effort you make, and satisfying them may even put your bottom line in danger. You can take some feedback (and then validate it) from those credible people who have been with you for quite some time now. Those who bring you referrals, and of course, profits. Those whom you know would want you to grow.

3. Be persistent and stay committed to your business

You invested in this business so don’t give up easily. When things aren’t working the way you expect things to be, find a solution and work harder. No business became successful overnight. All businesses faced many challenges – and even failed several times – before achieving success. Your business doesn’t need to meet the ROI on the first day. Never let the pressure tell you what you need to do. It will bring you nothing.

Find something to motivate you, be passionate about your goals, and stay focused on achieving what you wanted for your business. Stay committed to your business because your business relies on you. If you fail to do so, everything will start to fall apart and all your hard work will all be gone. Who will stand for your business if you, the one who invested it, will never stand for it?

If you lose your trust in your business, thinking that it will never be successful, then don’t expect that somebody else will start trusting you and believe in what you wanted to do. Whenever you thought of giving up, remember the desire you have in bringing your business to the world. Your desire can be your driving force. It lets you manifest your highest potential.

4. Never stop learning

Change is constant, and learning will keep you relevant in this ever-changing and developing world. To become successful, you need to keep learning. Learning will help you to adapt to changes this world has to offer.

The best leaders you look up to who became successful are always finding ways to learn, expanding their knowledge and keeping up with what’s happening in this world. Bill Gates is one of them. He even posts the books he reads and gives them reviews on his blog, Gates Notes. He reads about one book a week which makes it about 50 books a year.

We are in the modern era where developments can happen overnight. In order to out-compete the competition in the business world, you must keep up with the development. There is always something new to learn, so we should never stop learning.

Competition in all business industries is inevitable and dealing with your competitors is not easy. It can make or break you, that is why everyone in the industry should strive to give all their best. Finding some tactics, learning new things, and guiding the company to provide the unexceptional services, are the things we do to outrun our competitors.

Have faith in yourself and in your ability. If you think you can do it, you surely can. The world will align to your dreams if you fight against your self-doubts and worries. Remember, no one wants to fail. We all want to win, and we will, someday. We all have our time to shine. Take a risk and learn from the failures. Create a goal and achieve it.

Merryl Dusaran contributed articles relating to business, health, and personal development. In her free time, she’s either contemplating what to write next or has her nose stuck in a thick novel. She’s at Rethink - Fair Trade Outsourcing writing agent journey about the company’s impact sourcing.

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Startups

How to Avoid Startup Clichés and Buzzwords When Pitching Investors

Using jargon can make you sound like you’re trying to fill space instead of providing meaningful data

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How to pitch investors better

Entrepreneurs frequently seek startup funding through a variety of channels. Yet, none seem as challenging as successfully pitching to experienced investors. After all, investors are pressed for time and eager for opportunities. These characteristics make it challenging to motivate them, especially if you’re bombarding them with a pitch full of jargon. (more…)

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From Idea to Empire: 5 Power Moves for Your Startup to Thrive in Today’s Market

As an entrepreneur, I’ve learned that understanding market dynamics and choosing the right business model are crucial

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How to thrive in the startup market in 2024

As an entrepreneur, I’ve learned that understanding market dynamics and choosing the right business model are crucial.

A few months into the startup, I was quick to gauge why it is necessary to go beyond the nuances of operational efficiency and the art of sustaining a business amid growing competition.

Collaboration is key.

The HR and the recruiting teams work with departments to foster a culture of collaboration, but what’s indispensable to business performance is the sync between the marketing and sales teams. What we’d consider as entrepreneurs is the need to ensure seamless collaboration to predict and achieve business goals together. In turn, this will help secure long-term recurring revenue for the business.

Besides, entrepreneurs need to focus on revenue as they gear up to take their startup from $0 to $1 million. The journey is filled with critical decisions, from identifying your target customer base to choosing the right funding strategy.

So, what next?

Read on… because here are five practical, results-driven strategies that you as a founder can implement to make a mark in their industry.

#1. Embrace the Lean Methodology

What is lean methodology?

It is all about pivoting resources to create more value for customers with fewer resources. 

This principle encourages you to be more agile and allow rapid iteration based on customer feedback rather than spending years perfecting a product before it hits the market.

Want to implement it?

Here’s what you can do.

Build “Measure-Learn” Loop: What I did was develop a minimum viable product (MVP), a simple version of the product. You can do the same since it allows you to start the learning process as quickly as possible. After launching MVP, measure how customers use it and learn from their behaviors and feedback.

Here’s what I can recommend here:

  • Identify the core features that solve your customers’ primary needs and focus solely on those to develop your MVP.
  • Know the feedback channels where early users can communicate their experiences, suggestions, and complaints.
  • Analyze user behavior and feedback to make informed product development and iteration decisions.

#2. Focus on Customer Development

Let’s talk about taking our startup to the next level. 

It’s not just about getting customers – it’s about really getting to know them. We need to dive into their world, understand their struggles, and see how our product or service can make a difference in their lives. 

It’s like we’re detectives, piecing together the puzzle of our business hypothesis by actually chatting with our customers

What would you ideally do here?

Understand Customer Segments: I’d say, start dividing your target market into segments and develop a deep understanding of each segment’s demographics, behaviors, needs, and pain points. The idea is to get into their shoes and really feel what they feel.

Ensure your Product Clicks: When starting up, think of what you offer and consider whether it clicks with what our customers need. My thought was “Does my product solve their problems? Does it make their day better?” Put yourself through a tough grilling session to show customers the value proposition and ensure that the product’s promise matches what our customers are looking for.

I’d recommend the following actions here:

  • Talk to them – through surveys, interviews, or even casual chats. The goal? To gather real, raw insights about what they need and expect.
  • Use the collected data to create detailed profiles for each type of customer. This way, everyone on our team really understood we were serving. I think this should help your startup as well.
  • Try out different versions of our product with a few customer groups. It’s all about feedback here – understanding if you’re hitting the mark or if we need to pivot.

#3. Foster a Data-Driven Culture

The digital world is highly data driven since it fuels key decisions in a startup. 

I believe it’s essential for us to build a data-driven culture. This means, you’ll move from making decisions based on hunches or assumptions. Instead, the focus should be on data analytics and insights to guide our strategies and improve our outcomes.

What can you do?

Use Data Analytics Tools: You should be using these tools to gather, analyze, and interpret data related to customer behavior, market trends, and our business operations. Here, consider the adoption of pipeline forecasting that leverages AI to find patterns in marketing data. 

In turn, you’ll get areas for improvement since it can analyze historical data and predict the outcome for you to plan your.

Action Items:

  • Pinpoint key performance indicators (KPIs) that align with your business objectives and ensure they are measurable and actionable.
  • Next, you can consider training your team to understand and use data analytics tools. This might involve workshops or bringing in experts to build a data-savvy workforce.
  • Once everything is in place, regularly review data reports and dashboards. This gives us a clear picture of a startup’s health and helps adjust your strategies and predict future trends.

#4. Strengthen Your Financial Acumen

A good grip on financial skills is important to steer your business towards growth and making sure it stays on track. For this, you’ll have to understand the money side of things, which helps you manage your cash flow. Think of figuring out smart investment moves and sizing up any risks that come your way.

Here’s a tip on how you can get savvy with your finances.

Maintain Rigorous Financial Discipline: I’m really focused on cultivating a strong company culture, one that truly resonates with our mission. So, I’d suggest fostering open communication and encouraging a sense of ownership and collaboration among everyone in the team.

Action Items:

  • Get to know your financial statements inside out – I’m talking about the income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statement. These are like the vital signs for your business’s financial health
  • Use financial forecasting that helps predict your future money moves. With this, you will have a heads-up on upcoming revenues, expenses, and how much cash you’ll need. Also, research on the available financial forecasting tools that can make predictions spot-on.
  • Don’t go at it alone. Regularly touch base with financial advisors or mentors. With them by your side, you’ll have a fresh perspective on your financial strategies to ensure you’re on the right path to hit your business goals.

5. Prioritize Team Building and Leadership Development

It is crucial to focus on building a solid team and developing strong leaders. This means putting our resources into the people who are going to propel our company forward. 

What you’ll aim for here?

Creating a culture where everyone collaborates and every team member has the chance to emerge as a leader.

What I would do:

Cultivate a Strong Company Culture: This culture should mirror our mission and foster open communication. It’s important that it encourages everyone to feel a sense of ownership and work together.

Invest in Leadership and Team Development: As founders, we’ll have to make way for opportunities for teams to enhance their skills, face new challenges, and grow in their careers.

Some concrete steps that you should consider taking:

  • Begin with clearly communicating your startup’s vision, mission, and values so that every team member is on the same page.
  • Conduct regular team-building activities and workshops to boost skills and strengthen a sense of unity and collaboration.
  • How about starting a mentorship program within our organization? The more experienced team members could guide and support the growth of newer or less experienced folks.
  • Alas… encourage feedback at all levels. We should keep striving to create an environment where open, honest communication is the norm and everyone feels safe to speak up.

I know it’s one thing to get your head around these ideas and quite another to actually make them a part of your everyday business life. But that’s where the real magic happens, right? It’s all in the doing. 

As a startup founder, this means more than just being a big dreamer. How about rolling up your sleeves to be the planner who pays attention to the smallest details. Ultimately, these tips and more tactics around it will help carve a leader in you who listens and cares and the learner who’s always ready to adapt

So, as you’re either starting out or moving forward on this entrepreneurial adventure, keep these practical tips right there.

May these be your guiding lights, helping you steer through the wild and exciting world of building a startup that’s not just a dream, but a thriving reality.

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12 Things I Learned in 12 Months of Working on My Startup

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A few weeks ago I launched my startup. It took exactly 12 months from the initial idea until the moment I saw my app in the App Store. And these were some of the most challenging, fun and exciting 12 months of my whole life. (more…)

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8 Actionable Ways to Get Your Startup’s First 100 Customers

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What’s the one thing that every business wants? Is it money, fame, or endless resources? The answer is quite simple—customers. Having customers is the sure-shot way of ensuring that your business stays afloat in the long run. No matter how good your product or services are, without people buying what you sell, you won’t reach anywhere. However, establishing a customer base is one of the most challenging things a business has to do, especially if you are just starting. (more…)

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