You are definitely faced with competition, if you do business. Competitors meet you in almost any niche. They appear nearby, even if you managed to find your blue ocean. Today, the waters of all business oceans are rapidly turning red due to the development of Internet technologies. First of all, it concerns online markets.
You are familiar with the competition not by hearsay, if you promote projects on the Internet. Brands are constantly increasing their budgets for SEO, contextual advertising and other marketing methods, which we wrote about in the article about fast site promotion. Because of this, young projects can not get into the top search results.
Digital competition is different from the struggle for the consumer offline. Thanks to Internet technologies, companies and people working in another geographic region often become your competitors. Moreover, they sometimes do not even plan to work with your potential customers, since they have their own customer base in another part of the world. But you still have to compete with virtual competitors, as buyers have the opportunity to compare and search for the best by simply launching a browser.
Your direct competitors also enjoy the virtually unlimited possibilities of the Internet. Surely you are faced with a situation where customers choose the obviously worst offer, which is difficult to explain from the point of view of classical marketing. However, in the digital era, leaders are often those who captured the top of the list on time, collected bots in the thematic communities of social networks and told the customers the loudest who best was.
Of course, the market sooner or later puts everything in its place. Consumers understand which offers really deserve attention, and Yandex and Google determine, by behavioral factors, which resources have captured the top thanks to search manipulations. However, business usually cannot passively wait for the restoration of justice, and therefore prefers to actively fight with competitors.
Below you will find a description of seven ways to deal with competitors on the Internet. Using them, you protect yourself from players who promote their projects by attacking your business.
1. Speak upright, stay honest.
Openness and publicity often remains the best weapon against rival attacks. You can discuss the arguments used against you at a press conference or during an online discussion. Do not make excuses. You must highlight the problem indicated by the ill-wishers from all sides.
Find in it a positive for customers. For example, large insurance companies often face charges of delaying payments. In this situation, the company management should explain to customers why losses are not resolved quickly. The insurer takes care of customers, thoroughly investigating insurance events, calculating the magnitude of the loss and identifying fraud cases.
2. Use a passive-aggressive approach.
This method works great when competitors hitting your business are well known to consumers. Write in a blog or in a social profile that certain envious and detractors are spreading negative rumors about your business. Explain to the audience that these actions are related to the difficulties that your competitors have encountered.
Do not name names and company names. Customers and competitors must independently understand who we are talking about. This approach will certainly put your detractors in an uncomfortable position - they will have to make excuses themselves.
3. Use direct comparisons.
Use this approach to highlight your strengths. For example, compare the cost of your products with similar products of competitors. Post any validated data that demonstrates your superiority. The results of customer satisfaction surveys, comparison of market share, technology efficiency, speed of service are just some of the data that will interest customers.
4. Publish case studies
Tell the audience how you solved the client problem. Pay attention to consumers who have been unable to help competitors. However, focus precisely on customer service, only in passing mentioning his unsuccessful experience of working with other companies.
Do not mention the names of competitors directly to avoid libel and litigation charges. However, you can hint who among your detractors are not able to provide consumers with a decent level of service.
“Differentiate or die,” says Jack Trout, a marketing guru in the eponymous book. Do things differently. If your detractors are dumping, save market prices and tell customers about the benefits of a quality product.
Using this approach, you knock the ground out from under the feet of competitors, as you deprive them of reasons for criticism. Detractors will be busy fighting their own kind, so they will not have time to attack your business.
6. Challenge competitors to a duel
By publicly calling a foe into a duel, you can once and for all discourage him from promoting his business by attacking yours. No, no, you will not need swords and pistols. Of course, if you do not produce them. Open testing of goods, custom comparisons, competitions - you need peaceful duels.
Use this method if you are completely confident in your superiority. Document the results of the duel, invite in the jury of reputable industry experts. Publicity again will help you in the fight against unscrupulous competitors.
7. Ignore attacks.
Just keep working, not paying attention to detractors. This is the most powerful tool against the dissemination of unreliable data. However, you must fanatically believe in your product to use this approach.
Do not forget to publish in the blog the results of research, case studies, customer reviews, even if you decide not to pay attention to competitors. Your customers need positive information and proof of your competence.
You must have come across a situation where someone becomes a market leader not because of professionalism and good work with clients, but because of criticism of other projects and the ability to submit themselves to the public. Probably, you struggled with the desire to publicly poke upstart nose in his incompetence.
Believe me, do not do this. First, as we know, nerve cells do not regenerate. Secondly, having coped with one foe, you will face two new ones tomorrow. Therefore, direct energy into improving your product and increasing marketing effectiveness.
The above methods of dealing with ill-wishers will help you with this, as they are constructive. This is the most difficult and most effective way to deal with competitors. You will not be easy, but if you succeed you will defeat all opponents at once.
Have you encountered unfair online competition? Tell us in the comments how you fought against ill-wishers.