I was cleaning the office and scanning my book shelf recently and came upon a book I have not read in a while and it brought back a realization we all need to know. The book is called Blue Ocean Strategy and it talks about how we set up our businesses and compete.
If you take a look at your business, you can compare your marketing to that of an ocean, vast and plentiful. The problem is that most businesses, even in the current market, do not differentiate themselves much, if at all, providing the same level of service as everyone else. The end result is that you operate in a “red ocean”, one full of sharks, attacking each other for scraps.
How do you get to swim in the blue water? Stop blaming your slow growth on the market. Stop blaming your problems on commoditization of your services. List your key competitive factors; now list your competition’s and make sure they aren’t the same. The goal is to differentiate yourself, creating a new market, thereby making your competition irrelevant.
To get to your blue ocean, it could be found in several ways. One way is innovation, creating a new product or service within your industry. Another is the customer experience, creating a unique experience that others simply cannot match. I am sure you can think of several ideas to make it work.
The bottom line is that you need to check where your business is at. Are you competing in a blue ocean or a red one? What are you doing to break away from the red ocean and make competition a thing of the past?