Why you need to ignore your competition

August 12, 2013

When I was first starting my business, one of the things I was painfully aware of was my competition. I wasted time and energy studying their websites, comparing services and prices, and worrying if anyone would buy from me.

Doing some research and due diligence is good. However, their comes a point when you need to ignore your competition and focus your time and energy on what you’re doing, not on what your competition is doing.

How do you know when that time is? I don’t know. Two days?

Bobbi Brown, founder and CEO of the popular Bobbi Brown cosmetic line says, “Keep your eyes on the road. Don’t look at all the competition.”

Like the Amish here in Pennsylvania do with their horses, you need to put blinders on and let all the noise around you disappear.

Marketing expert Ameena Falchetto says if you pay too much attention to your competition you “fall prey to being a bland version of your competition with a cloudy message.”

The people who buy your product, sign up for your service,  or read your blog do so because they like you and they like what you’re doing. If they wanted the guy down the street, they would have went to him.

Ignore your competition and build something great, something remarkable and totally yours.

Photo Credit: DenisGiles via Compfight cc

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  • Reply Jon White August 12, 2013 at 9:50 am

    Great advice Michael. So often I’ve focused on what the competition is doing that I forget to focus on my own business and ultimately it prevents me from helping the people I want to serve.

    But the more I focus on just what I’m doing, my creativity and production go way up and I am better able to serve my clients.

    • Reply Michael Good August 12, 2013 at 1:25 pm

      Jon, it’s funny how that works, isn’t it? I’ve now realized the pie is big enough for everyone and their are plenty of customers to go around.

  • Reply jodyberkey August 13, 2013 at 6:00 am

    I completely agree with your assessment. It’s good to be aware of the market and see what others are doing to serve the people in your niche but only in reasonable doses. We remind ourselves that because we are just a two-person, part-time show for the time being, we’re nimble and don’t have to go through layers of people and bureaucracy to make things happen. The downside of that, of course, is that two versus companies of hundreds is a tough match up. Who doesn’t like a good David and Goliath story though? 🙂

    • Reply Michael Good August 14, 2013 at 2:25 pm

      Great reminder, Jody! Yes, two verses hundreds isn’t really comparable. We can learn from those in our field, but still have to make it work for us at the end of the day. Everyone loves a good David and Goliath story! GO 90 REVOLUTIONS!!! 😉

  • Reply Donna Yates August 13, 2013 at 7:42 am

    Great advise. Jody, I agree that when you are “the one” in your business, everything falls to you. That is both a blessing and a curse at times, but the blessings outweigh the bad. You get to see the results first hand! I love the David and Goliath story!

    • Reply Michael Good August 14, 2013 at 2:26 pm

      Agreed, Donna. David and Goliath is a great analogy!

  • Reply Ann Musico August 13, 2013 at 9:22 am

    Great post and advice Michael – paying too much attention to the competition can drive you crazy! Being unique and finding your own style is definitely better. Looking at what others in your field are doing is valuable to a point – but we can so easily become side tracked and overwhelmed.

    • Reply Michael Good August 14, 2013 at 2:22 pm

      Agreed, Ann. We can learn and get lots of ideas from those in our field. However when we’re just starting out, we have to remember we don’t have the resources or experiences of many of the established businesses.

  • Reply Tom Dixon August 14, 2013 at 11:21 pm

    I couldn’t agree more. I don’t pay attention to what other career coaches are doing, because there are too many other dynamics. What works for one may not for another – I pay attention to where I am seeing success and keep improving. Great reminder!

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