Every business owner who has a blog has at some point had the following thought:
“Why am I giving away all my hard-earned wisdom for free when my competition could easily snap it up and use it against me?”
Competition is a scary thing. We all hope we’ll be the only person with this particular business innovation or that particular moment of genius, and that our idea is what launches us into greatness. Sometimes we’re right, sometimes we’re wrong, but the point is that it doesn’t do to blog about the unique ideas that makes you different and special.
Except sometimes it does. Here are four reasons to love that the competition reads your blog.
1. You’re a leader, not a follower
When you’re the first person to do something, you establish yourself as the person who has ideas. So every blog in the hemisphere has the same exact idea in place four weeks later – so what? You’re still going to be the one who launched it, and people will refer back to you years later as the innovator of that new fantastic idea – you know, the one that was so fantastic that everyone in the world absolutely had to jump on the bandwagon.
It doesn’t matter if your competition does the exact same thing as you did. You did it first, which very often means you did it best. By “best”, I mean that you profited from it.
Don’t be afraid of putting your ideas on the table. You’re the one who isn’t a copycat. You’re the one blazing new trails. You’re the one going where no one has gone before.
2. Competition inspires you to create new things
Without competition, we’d still be listening to 8-tracks. That’s not a joke; media players have expanded by leaps and bounds because someone is always ready to jump in there with a new idea. A better quality of music, one that never skips or sounds fuzzy, for example. What about a player that’s easy and fun to use? What about digital audio?
Without competition, these ideas would never have become reality, because there would be no one out there creating something better than 8-tracks.
When you have competition, you have to improve. You can’t rest on your laurels because there’s someone doing what you do with a new gadget tacked on that makes it even better. Someone’s going to come up with a brand new game changer. And that’s a good thing, because it means two things:
Life will never be boring. And your business will never be stagnant.
3. Competition means differentiation.
You and your competitor both sell an ebook about how to market online. It has the exact same content. It has almost the exact same words, in fact. So what makes yours better than the next guy’s?
Competition means you have to figure out why a customer should prefer your product to anyone else’s. Maybe yours comes with more than the average number of swearwords. Maybe you have bad-ass sales techniques. It doesn’t really matter, honestly – none of these is any better than the next. But differentiation means different customers get excited about your product.
Not the next guy’s. Yours.
A whole different crew of customers might be excited about the next guy’s product instead of yours, but that doesn’t matter. Instead of a slew of bored customers all buying the same product, you have a bunch of customers who are very, very excited they bought from you instead of from the next guy over.
Excitement instead of indifference? That’s a great thing.
4. Competition makes you confident.
When you’re the only person doing what you do, you’re not always certain you’re doing it right. Hell, you’re not even sure that you do it the best. You’re just the person who does it. That’s all you can say about yourself. You can’t say you do it better than anyone else, either, because no one else does it. You’re just there.
That’s . . . not very exciting.
When you have competition, you can point to your competitors and say “See what they do there? I don’t do that, because I know you don’t like it.}” You can also point at your competitors and say, “See what they don’t there? I do that. Because I know you like it.” You can say that you’re better than so-and-so, and you have concrete reasons why that’s true.
Being able to say that you’re better for whatever reason gives you confidence in your business and in your product. You feel capable of taking on someone else because you can see that what you’ve done is superior to what they’ve done.
That’s a good feeling.
And it’s going to translate into a confidence that affects your sales, your demeanor, and ultimately the success of your business.
Why do you love your competition?