Competitive Advantage

It is a common misconception that Competitive Advantage means that you must be better than your competitors.  In reality, Competitive Advantage means that you must be must be better attuned to your customers values than your competitors.  What is the difference?  Customers balance a combination of Marketing’s 4 P’s; Price, Product, Place and Promotion.  Some marketers add a fifth P; People.  One customer may value safety over all else and be willing to sacrifice features, convenience and price to have the safest product on the market.  Another customer may require a reasonably safe product but demands the lowest price available.  To have a competitive advantage, you must segment the customers and define your target customer.  Then research that customer to determine exactly what combination of features, quality, convenience, etc. that your target customers value.  Once this is defined, everything in the company should reflect that combination of values.  Every product, process, customer service interaction and communication must reflect those values.  Select your partners and distribution points in alignment to your chosen values.  The final step is to create specific and targeted communication to your target customers.