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When the Going Gets Tough ... the Tough Get Going! - part 2

  • Thread starter johnthesearcher
  • Start date
johnthesearcher

johnthesearcher

New Member
Competition SUCKS! part 2 ........ why and what I believe we can do about it.

With a saturated marketplace and new competition getting in 'the game' every day in life, you often hear things like:

  • "Why should I buy your whatever when the XYZ company sells it for £50 less?"
  • "Why should I hire you to sell my house when the ABC company will sell it for 5% instead of 6% commission?"
  • "Why should I listen to you when say your products or service are the best value for money?"

Want to know what’s even worse about living in this state of competition?

In most cases, you’ll never even get a chance to respond to these objections because people won’t verbalize them to you… those objections often never make it past their subconscious evaluation phase. When you live in competition with others, prospects and customers will ELIMINATE you without a second thought… and they often won’t even know why they’ve eliminated you.

Competing against other people inevitably creates an internal struggle within you… Internal struggle leads to other negative feelings like anger, resentment, inferiority and worse!

If you try to win through competing with others … ultimately, your health and your bank balance will suffer!

You can’t win in this way (nobody can)!

Even if you succeed for a while by competing with others, ultimately you will lose because once you become #1, people naturally try to knock you off… pull you down… or otherwise climb over you in their quest to take the #1 spot.

Unless you possess an unlimited budget, incredible good looks, or psychic abilities that let you see into the future, competing with others is NOT the way to win in life or in business over the long haul! At this point, you probably have a question on your mind (or at least you should)…

"If better, faster, quicker competition isn’t the answer, then what’s the secret to winning?"

Simple! Don’t play the game everyone else is playing… Don’t compete.

Instead… you should "Create!"

Creation - not competition - is the secret to winning in everything you do!

As competition is not desirable ....what really matters is creativity.

Lead don't follow ....and have the greatest respect for anyone who has the courage to lead anything creative or constructive ....

Creation is the process of finding, inventing, discovering or originating something new. It’s doing things in a different, more creative, more beneficial way than others are currently delivering to them.

Creation means coming up with new solutions to existing problems and doing things in a way that immediately separates you from the competition in the minds of your prospects.

In fact, being a creator rather than a competitor, so much so, that they won’t even make a comparison… you stand alone in their minds.

Creation means being different… and people who are different stand apart from the crowd and don’t face the struggles that naturally come along with the inherent pressure from market competition.

Creation means being the only game in town if people want and trust what you offer… and that means a whole lot more sales, more satisfaction, better relationships… and more money!

Creation comes with a price… a price most people are mysteriously NOT willing to pay. But if you pay the price… the world will deliver anything you ask. That’s the price?

In order to create instead of compete you must cut yourself off from the mentality of the 'crowd' mindset and ..........

You must be willing to make mistakes.
You must be willing to take chances and be vulnerable.
You must be willing to open yourself up to criticism.

You must be willing to work through the doubts that will inevitably bubble up from your subconscious mind as you experiment with new and better ways to help others get the results they want.

How do you remove yourself from the crowded arena of competition and get into the fresh air of creation? Simple.

Here’s a 4-step formula for getting out of competition and in to creation…

# Step 1 – Decide

Make a positive decision that you will no longer do things the exact same way, sell the exact same things, just because everyone else does it that way doesn’t make it right… or better…

Earl Nightingale termed it best when he said most people play "Follow the follower." People blindly following the person in front of them… who follows the person in front them… and there’s no leader at the front, just an endless line of followers… doing the same old thing… the same old way… with the same old tools… creating needless competition.

And remember – dare to be different.

# Step 2 – Innovate

Innovation means finding a new use for an existing tool or technique and is simply the process of taking something old and creating something new by taking two seemingly unrelated things, putting them together in a slightly different way thus creating a new solution to a problem.

Innovation means sticking your head above the crowd, doing a complete about-face, and heading in a totally different direction looking for new answers to old problems.

Innovation means being different… it means trusting yourself and your abilities…

# Step 3 - Mix in the “magic” ingredient – YOU!

Decide to always look for ways to inject your individuality and unique talents into everything you do or say.

By embracing all of your your talents, developing yourself as a person, and valuing your contributions – you unleash the new way of creative thinking we ALL possess inside us. You simply create needless competition and struggle when you try to be like others without injecting your own uniqueness into what you do and how you do it.

# Step 4 - Trust

Trust that you do contribute exceptional value and always go the extra mile.
Trust that you can always improve in some small way over yesterday
Trust that everything that happens in your life happens with a purpose and it serves you.

Trust that creation, not competition holds the 'secret' for your eventual success and that, like anything, you’ll get better over time with practice and positive application.

Creativity makes you unique… uniqueness makes you almost indispensable… indispensable people have little or no immediate 'competition'!

John

Quote for the Day: "ImagiNATION is the greatest nation on earth......... you are invited to join that nation"
 
Adventurelife

Adventurelife

New Member
Excellent article John.

The reality for most small business people I come into contact is far removed from the picture you paint that could be their life.

I suspect the day to day requirement to deliver keeps they from traveling a different path such as you suggest.

Also although all business people are risk takers by nature, many do not seem willing to take the risks that are required to get past the day to day demands that business imposes and get to a point where making things happen rather than doing things.

Peter
 
R

Red Doe

New Member
Competition in my kind of business (animal hide tanner) ... well, it`s difficult for me. Tanneries do exist in Scotland but they are industrial and I`m not...they use sophisticated and expensive machinery, I do it all by hand. They also employ others, here, it`s just me. :)
So I can`t compete on their level. So far as I know, I`m the only single person tanning hides for a living, by hand. (if anyone knows of anyone else please feel free to correct me)
As a result of this, the others can offer their products at reduced prices to mine. I admit, got no idea how they can do that! But they do.
At this point in time, I`m actually working for free, without a wage. Not making nearly enough to keep my head above water (and I had to claim WTC to stop going under) but I am wondering if it`s because I was doing the potentially foolish mistake of trying to compete with the prices of the `big boys`.
So I`ve come to the conclusion that I`m going to ask realistic, sensible prices for my goods that include not just the raw materials but my time and energy and expertise spent, too. And if folks don`t buy? Well, I`m probably not much worse off! :D
Somebody said to me once that customers won`t actually trust the product if it is for sale too cheap. I see the sense in that now.
And am hoping to market my goods based on them being hand crafted in a traditional manner. :) Good article.
 
Adventurelife

Adventurelife

New Member
Competition in my kind of business (animal hide tanner) ... well, it`s difficult for me. Tanneries do exist in Scotland but they are industrial and I`m not...they use sophisticated and expensive machinery, I do it all by hand. They also employ others, here, it`s just me. :)
So I can`t compete on their level. So far as I know, I`m the only single person tanning hides for a living, by hand. (if anyone knows of anyone else please feel free to correct me)
As a result of this, the others can offer their products at reduced prices to mine. I admit, got no idea how they can do that! But they do.
At this point in time, I`m actually working for free, without a wage. Not making nearly enough to keep my head above water (and I had to claim WTC to stop going under) but I am wondering if it`s because I was doing the potentially foolish mistake of trying to compete with the prices of the `big boys`.
So I`ve come to the conclusion that I`m going to ask realistic, sensible prices for my goods that include not just the raw materials but my time and energy and expertise spent, too. And if folks don`t buy? Well, I`m probably not much worse off! :D
Somebody said to me once that customers won`t actually trust the product if it is for sale too cheap. I see the sense in that now.
And am hoping to market my goods based on them being hand crafted in a traditional manner. :) Good article.
Hi

This is an interesting challenge as it is essential you look at it in the way John describes above as the hard truth is you have no chance of even making a living unless you become creative as you cannot compete on price or on speed or on stock or on several other levels.

Here is what I would do ( not suggesting you do it but hopefully it will start the creative process)

I would not try and compete

I would concentrate on the story as I can sense their is a very good story in what you do. I would spend a lot of time on this to get the story the best interesting and attention grabbing story possible.

I would commit that story to paper and then I would go on the scrounge and get it committed to film.

I would then spend a lot of time thinking about who would be interested in the story. I suspect many in the tourism industry would be interested in the story. Tour companies on buses, walking companies, private tours etc etc

I would spend a lot of time on that thinking as this is a story that needs to be told through other organizations as going direct is going to be a very hard journey.

I would spend time thinking about what could work with my story, any other stories in the local area that overlap to make the overall story better. Can I partnership to bring added value to both parties?

I would think about if my story and my actions of doing the tanning were interesting and challenging enough to run short courses on that people would pay me to attend. ( you will be surprised how many people attend dry stone walling courses for example)

I hope you get the drift. I strongly suspect you will never make it work if you focus on the product as all the commercial cards are stacked against you so you have to change the circumstances and create an environment so that the product and the making of the product is just part of a much more interesting and wider experience.

The above is not easy, but then nothing worth doing ever is.
 
johnthesearcher

johnthesearcher

New Member
Hi Red Doe

Quote: "Competition in my kind of business (animal hide tanner) ... well, it`s difficult for me. Tanneries do exist in Scotland but they are industrial and I`m not...they use sophisticated and expensive machinery, I do it all by hand. They also employ others, here, it`s just me. So I can`t compete on their level. So far as I know, I`m the only single person tanning hides for a living, by hand".

As usual, Peter makes some really relevant and excellent points and provides you with the foundation of the direction you may consider following and I would like to simply expand on his advice.

Without knowing a lot more about what research you have done and people you have spoken to, to date, it is difficult not to replicate what you may have already tried, but here goes .......

I have often used the term that "it is not about doing certain things ..... but rather doing things in a CERTAIN way"

I advocate in my post above - that it is about being creative and part of that process helps you to define your 'positioning' statement in that, what makes you or your company different .... unique, memorable and answers a number of so what questions .... like why should I buy from you?

Which leads nicely into and echoes Peter's point about YOUR story ..... the WHY! you do what you do etc.

If we look at your quote above there are 2 very important statements that fly off the page in respect of 'positioning'

1. You do the process by hand
2. You are the only person doing what you do (in Scotland)

So far so good ...... fast forward a year from now and I've read your story which appeals to a specific niche, a specific type of market and I ask the question: why should I buy from you? .......... but now the answer has changed dramatically because I am not just buying a leather product I'm buying something which was ....

# Processed and produced by a small business in Scotland. (Social Enterprise angle)

# Processed without the need for sophisticated and expensive machinery (Appeals to the Environmentalist)

# The process and background has appeal to the visitor market to Caithness & Sutherland (Tourism interest)

# The organisation sources/delivers its raw product from/to ethical suppliers (fast growing concern market)

# The product doesn't cost the earth and purchase allows me to support the local economy (Fair Trade)

# The process is retaining a skill that Scotland was globally famous for (National pride and skillset)

These are only a few of the key things that spring to mind but I'm sure you get the idea .........

The question I ask myself now is ....... was IRN BRU any better than others of it's kind .... probably not but "it was made in Scotland from girders" and it's story is not a good story ....it's a great story.

If you follow what every one else is doing you will always be second ......

Find out what your competitors don't do and why and then look at that from an economics and positioning standpoint.

Develop a unique tagline and story then brand the living daylights out of Red Doe by ...

Telling everyone and I mean everyone your why ........ you just never know who may be listening!

John

Quote for the day: "Learn to give more in value ... than you receive in payment" (It pays dividends)
 
SugarWayRooms

SugarWayRooms

Banned
Thanks for that helpful and very informative post. I really appreciate it. Thanks for that post. ..:)
 
johnthesearcher

johnthesearcher

New Member
Hi and welcome to the SBF which I for one am glad to see it return.

You will find many insightful posts on the forum and some really neat and helpful people.

Ask lots of questions and post your thoughts and advice where you can, as the 'secret' is to contribute and that way we all win and benefit from the creativity of thought from others.

John

Thought for the Day: "I do the very best I know how - the very best I can and I mean to keep on doing so until the very end" Abraham Lincoln
 
SugarWayRooms

SugarWayRooms

Banned
Hello John,

Thank you..:)

Yes you're right. Even I'm new to SBF I can say that this forum is really good and lots of great and helpful post to be found. And SBF people were really helpful.
 

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