Last week we looked at how to research your market from the point of vies of the client. This week I am going to look at how we should examine our competition within our niche.
This is an important part of your overall market research and planning. First off though I would like to put a public health warning on this one. It is very easy to become obsessed with what your competition are doing, their pricing and services. The main aim of competitor analysis is not to be fooled into copying what they are doing, remember unique sells! But rather to ensure that your positioning is still correct.
So what is market positioning? Basically positioning involves deciding what level of service/product you will offer at a given price point. So if you offer a higher level of service compared to your competition, you are more able to price your service at a higher price point. On the flip side if you offer a much lower level of service you will find it harder to justify charging a high price for your service (we will look at pricing in more detail over the coming weeks).
So what kind of things should we be looking at when doing our competitor analysis? You are trying to identify what it is that makes them successful or not in their niche. So answering some of the following questions may help you.
- What is their product range?
- What is their price point?
- What is their USP?
- How long have they been in business?
- What offers do then run?
- Why might someone choose them over you?
- What to they have that you do not?
- What do you have that they don not?
Another useful exercise is to look at the person or company in your niche that you feel is the market leader, the one that sets the standards. This does not have to be in your local area, it could be nationally or internationally. You should then look at their standards, product ranges, price points and marketing. This information, or best practice can then be used as a learning tool to improve what you do!
- Look at the websites of your top 4 competitors and carry out an analysis of their services/products.
- Carry out a bench marking exercise for the market leader in your niche.
Next week I am going to look at how to set your personal training product range.
Until the if you enjoyed this or found it useful please comment, tweet and Facebook this article!