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A consistent goal in doing business is being a step ahead of your competitors. What exactly is a competitive advantage and how do you build one?

Firstly, you need to ask the question - why should a customer choose my product or service over my competitors’? Sometimes the answer is simple, but for some you’ll need to dig a little deeper to find out exactly what it is that sets you apart.

The beauty about doing business is that you don’t need to stick to one or two defining points. You can create ways to gain advantages and rise above competition.

  1. Strengthen your online presence

If you’re easy to find online, contacting your business is convenient and fast, and your website offers clear and concise (yet detailed!) information about your products and services, you can take the lead in your local area. Take a look at how your competitors are playing in the digital space and figure out what you can do better.

  1. Target a specific audience

It might seem easiest to target a larger group of people, as you’ll have more chances of securing customers, right? Wrong! Different people will respond to different content, so it’s important to firstly understand your audience, and secondly tailor your content to reach and engage them effectively.

This takes a bit of research and you’ll need to define your target market and create buyer personas within that market. Once you’ve got a clear idea of who your customers are, it’ll be much easier to come up with the best ways to reach them.

  1. Build a strong company culture

Is there word on the street that your company is incredible to work for? If your company culture is admirable, people will talk about you. Not only as a great place to work, but as a great place to buy or seek services from. Customers are more inclined to buy from businesses that treat their workers well. Plus, this will also show in your team’s performance and your business’ output.

  1. Maintain consistent branding

Do you have a strong logo and tagline? Do you use consistent colours, fonts, images and tone of voice across all of your promotional and social content? It may seem insignificant, however these elements are what make up your brand identity. A rock solid brand identity will give your business credibility and build your reputation, so customers can recognise your brand at first glance.

  1. Create a stand-out value proposition

Here we come back to the question- why should a customer choose you? You may not be the only builder in the local area, or your cafe might sit on a street filled with food and beverage venues, but what is it that separates you from the rest? Most importantly, how are you communicating this to your target market?

Get the team together, put your thinking caps on and start brainstorming the best ways that your business can gain a competitive advantage.

Looking for other resources that can help behind the scenes of your small business? Check out some of the latest articles on our blog.

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