We asked some speakers from this year’s Agorapulse Agency Summit how much they think about their competition when going for a client.
(Spoiler alert: they were pretty unanimous on where their focus lies!)
Then, tell us below:
How much consideration do you give to your competitors when proposing new business?
I focus on my agency’s strengths. Sometimes, you do need to do some competitive research.
I always told my leadership team, and I tell my leadership team at the agency I own now:
Focus on what we are doing and the services we’re providing, not what the competition’s doing.
If we do what we are capable of, then the competition will always be riding our coattails.
Never stop innovating, never stop growing lead sources, and let the competition try to figure out what you are doing instead of you trying to figure out what they are doing.
Yes and no.
I would say you’ve got to focus much more on what makes you different.
Start with different, then go to better—people can copy better, people can’t copy different that much, or it’s going to take a lot longer to copy different.
I always believe in really articulating your belief system—why you exist, how you think about the world differently, how you are uniquely you—and then start to go into more of the pitch, if you will.
There’s a lot of difference in terms of who you are as a brand, as a company, as an agency, but also how your product or service offering is different.
So the short answer is yes and no, but I wouldn’t be focused on trying to compare yourself to the competition. Focus on how your customers are comparing you, and how you’re helping them generate these different outcomes and business objectives, and and how you’re helping them grow their business.
That’s what we’re focused on.
I don’t worry about who our competitors are.
There’s so many people who do what we do and our clients are literally all over the country, so they can be looking at any number of other agencies. So I don’t worry about who else is competing for it.
I worry much more about who the client is and what their needs are, and making sure that I’m really clear on on those two items, and then building a strong rapport with the client or with the prospect, and then making sure that where their needs are and what we can do is really a good fit for both parties.
That’s more what I focus on.
In the marketing space, these platforms and the marketing landscape changes so, so quickly—sometimes weekly, sometimes daily—that I believe you need to really put all your energy toward really being good at what you do, and delivering the results you do, and staying on top of all those changes and really doing what you do well.
I just don’t think you have the time or energy to think about your competitors when you think of a proposal or you think of the minds of your prospect of who they’re going to hire.
If you deliver amazing results and you communicate well, I’m confident you won’t have to worry about finding work, because you’re going to be in demand.
It’s not that competitive research or competitive intelligence is bad in and of itself, but I find that more often than not it can be a distraction. It can be an easy rabbit hole to go down, and it feels like you’re making progress—but like I said, more of a distraction than progress.
I would rather have my agency clients focus on what they know is going to get them winning at the finish line.