The Australian Small Business Blog

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Know Your Competition Online

One of the best ways to understand why someone should buy from you, and what are your points of difference, is to study the competition. What is it they are doing well, and what are they doing not so successfully?

The internet makes this very easy. You can see what the competition are telling the market place, although it is quite common that people have excellent offline marketing and have just thrown up a website as an afterthought. But if online marketing is an option for your business, and there are only a few for which this is not true, the very best in your sector will show you how its done.

Recently someone visited my website and downloaded my eBook- The Four Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success. Many do this every day, so I really don’t pay much attention on a day to day basis to who is signing up. But this person immediately unsubscribed after downloading the book. Which has never happened before. It was a minute after the download- not enough time to read a 30 page book. So I checked him out. It was one of my competition checking me out!

Now this happens fairly regularly to me, but this guy was special. He was the first business coach I ever met. I heard David speak in a public forum, and he inspired me to take up business coaching. I thought he was very impressive. And I studied what he did and learnt a lot. And now he was checking me out. (He probably does not remember me as one of his audience a few years ago- there were probably 25 other people in the room.)

I had not been to his website for some time, so I decided to go for another visit. And I discovered that almost nothing on his site had changed, and with my current knowledge, I recognised he had no online marketing strategy, and now he was intending to learn from me! His business was unchanged from the time I first met him. He did not seem to have grown.

I really don’t have a problem with my competition spying on me, because all they are seeing is the tip of the iceberg, although if you know what to look for, even the tip can be revealing. And I hope David learnt a little about online marketing, there is plenty of room for both of us, and I still respect him for the way he inspired me.

But one of the greatest accolades you can receive is when someone who inspired you, comes to you for advice! And the only way you can be the best is to watch what the best is doing.

Dr Greg Chapman is the Director of Empower Business Solutions and provides Business Coaching Services & Advice.

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Dr. Greg Chapman is also the author of
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