A strong foundation is the key to success, regardless of what you’re building. Creating the right foundation for your business will save you time, money and a whole lot of headaches later on. On top of this, it will also pave the way for faster expansion and growth.
But how exactly do you go about building a strong foundation for your business? Here are three key questions you need to ask.
1) What is Your Market Position?
Your market position is your core competitive advantage.
If there are many other companies out there offering similar products or services to yours then you need to determine how to position your business so that you stand out from the crowd. To determine how your organization fits into its competitive landscape, ask:
- Who else has products or services like mine?
- What differentiates us from them?
- What are our unique selling points, and how do they benefit the customer?
- How does my organization compare with competitors when it comes to cost, quality, speed of service or delivery, and why is that important for customers?
- Are there other ways we can create a competitive advantage?
- What does our brand promise customers, and what are we actually delivering? Do these two things match up or not- and why?
You can ask these questions of your own organization and your competitors in the market space you serve. You can also learn a lot by asking customers what they want from their products or services, and whether or not you’re meeting their wants, needs and expectations.
2) What Do You Offer?
This is the most important step in running a successful business. What value do your customers see? How will that help them with their struggles, or improve their lives?
For instance, if you’re a hairdresser, you’re not just selling haircuts, you’re making your clients feel good about themselves. If you’re a real estate agent, you’re not just selling houses, you’re finding the right home for someone or helping them to make a life-changing investment.
These are just two examples; there are plenty more ways to think creatively about your business. The important thing is that your “what” benefits potential customers by helping them solve their problems, achieve success in some way or feel satisfied about themselves, and that is more valuable than any standalone product or service.
3) What Makes You Unique?
If you can offer your customers something that they want but can’t get elsewhere, you will have a much easier time marketing and selling your products or services. Furthermore, you won’t have to compete on price and will receive less pushback. If your customers can get the same thing for cheaper elsewhere, they will try to haggle you down or simply defect to your competitors – so don’t give them the option.
A great way to answer the question of “what makes you unique?” is by sharing your business story. This will help people see how what you offer fits into the bigger picture of who they are and where they came from, which can inspire them to move forward. It’s also a great way to share your passion for what you do, which will make people more excited about the idea of working with you.
Building a strong foundation for your business is a key step to set you up for future success. It’s about taking purposeful action to ensure that your business moves in the right direction as it begins to grow.
When you get your market positioning, offer and USP in place then it will be significantly easier to attract customers and investors. Launching a new business is exciting but it’s important to take the time to lay the foundations so that you don’t dive in headfirst, only to find yourself being swept away by the current.