Customer Experience News & Trends

How well do you know the competition? 6 questions you should be able to answer

Tough competitive situations are a fact of business life. Success is measured by your ability to take from competitors’ existing market shares as you protect your customer base.

Despite intense competition, it’s possible to take steps to prevent the competition from convincing customers to buy their product or service. Creating a strategic profile of each of your competitors may help you develop a more effective sales and marketing strategy.

Here are six questions you should be able to answer:

  1. Who are your existing competitors? How are they perceived by your shared customers? What are their strengths and weaknesses?
  2. What drives a particular competitor? Do you know, or can you speculate on, competitors’ long- and short-term business objectives? What is the competitor’s greatest cash cow?
  3. When did your competitors enter the market? What was their last major move, and when was it made? When do you anticipate more such moves?
  4. Why do your competitors behave as they do? Why do they target specific buyers?
  5. How are your competitors organized, and how do they market themselves? What incentives are their employees offered? How have they reacted to past industry trends, and how might they respond to new ones? How might they retaliate against your initiatives?
  6. How well do you really know your customers? One of your key roles is to gather information continually about your customers. What’s happening to them? What internal or external changes are taking place? What problems are they facing? What are their opportunities?

Adapted from “Accelerate the Sale,” by Mark Rodgers, a principal partner of the Peak Performance Business Group, which helps clients accelerate their sales, marketing and management efforts.

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