Can you defend your pricing niche against your competition?

Berkonomics

There can be nothing more important in your business planning that selecting the proper pricing niche, making your story clear using that niche, and the defending your position against the competition. They are: Price. The danger of competing on price.

How To Highlight A Sustainable Competitive Advantage

Startup Professionals Musings

Don’t bash the competition. Every investor knows how vulnerable a new startup is to competitors, so investors always ask about your sustainable competitive advantage in the marketplace. I look for entrepreneurs that can sell themselves and their offering to discerning customers.

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6 Keys To Convince Investors Of Your Competitive Edge

Startup Professionals Musings

Most entrepreneurs are quick to assert to potential investors that their product or solution will kill the competition, but unfortunately your opinion alone is not enough to convince most experienced investors. Competitive businesses have great teams, as well as great products.

6 Steps To Providing Exceptional Customer Experiences

Startup Professionals Musings

For decades, efforts to satisfy customers have been built around demographics – capitalizing on race, ethnicity, gender, income, and other attributes. Customer personalities define customer experience, and sets what they love, and what they hate.

You name the price; I’ll name the terms.

Berkonomics

Satisfy the seller’s need to claim a higher sales price victory by moving a substantial part of the price into a future earn–out, or using the target company’s own cash to pay part of the price, or asking the seller to finance a significant piece of the sale.

Customer Loyalty Can Be a Startup Competitive Edge

Startup Professionals Musings

You hear a lot of talk these days about the importance of customer satisfaction, but customer loyalty is the real win. Not too long ago, everybody thought customer loyalty was dead. Price was everything, and customers would switch suppliers for pennies.

Custom 107

Customer-Centric Strategies Win Over Product-Centric

Startup Professionals Musings

Is your marketing focus product-centric or customer-centric ? With a wealth of products now available, customers look for the most memorable experience , not just the best product. Amazon is very customer-centric, but it can make all the difference in retail as well as online.

Real Startups Never, Ever Discount Their Prices

InfoChachkie

Avoid a simple pricing mistake which could sink your startup. Vendors often respond by discounting their prices at the 11th hour, in the hopes a lower price will spur a purchase. Protection – Consider offering “pricing protection” to users who are particularly price-conscious.

4 Strategies To Ramp Up The Total Customer Experience

Startup Professionals Musings

Much has been written recently about the requirement to focus today on the total customer experience, as a competitive edge or even for survival. You want that customer to be delighted by the overall experience, rather than remember the many steps and the pain.

8 Principles For Building A Competitive Core Business

Startup Professionals Musings

As a startup, you need to use your limited resources to excel at a few core things for your best customers, in order to stand out and get the momentum going. Your customers’ biggest need is not for more things. Revenue and competitive position followed.

Competitive Intelligence

SoCal Tech Calendar

Tuesday, March 20, 2012 -- Competitive Intelligence: 007 Market Intel. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to estimate market size, competitive market share, how many potential customers are there, and price points. PDMA SoCal. It's Monday morning. The company president calls you into his office after attending a brainstorm session. He announces, "Let's build a gold-plated widget!"

5 Strategies To Thrive In Customer-Driven Disruption

Startup Professionals Musings

I’m more convinced that technology merely enables disruption, and changing customer interests and needs really causes it. Other companies keep the focus on their customers, and seem to thrive on disruption, much less survive. Customers don’t wait today.

Helping Consumers Name Their Own Price For Products, With Greentoe

socalTECH

In real life, you can just about bargain a price for anything you want to buy--a car, a house, even that new stereo from your local electronics store. Joe Marrapodi: GreenToe is a name your own price marketplace for products. Plus, they also get to acquire a new customer.

Investor Secrets For Smart Competitive Positioning

Startup Professionals Musings

They are looking for startups that have a sustainable advantage over direct and indirect competitor offerings, as well as obvious value to customers living without your product today. All of these are competitors in terms of speed, price, or luxury.

7 Steps To Meeting The New Bar Of Delighted Customers

Startup Professionals Musings

Having satisfied customers is no longer enough to keep you ahead of competitors. The bar has been raised to having “delighted” customers. Customer delight is defined as surprising the customer by exceeding his or her expectations, thus creating a positive emotional reaction.

6 Ways To Create Experiences That Customers Crave

Startup Professionals Musings

For decades, efforts to satisfy customers have been built around demographics – capitalizing on race, ethnicity, gender, income, and other attributes. Customer personalities define customer experience, and sets what they love, and what they hate.

Pick your pricing niche carefully. Defend it.

Berkonomics

They are: Price. Companies that compete on price rarely compete against others who emphasize service or quality. Internet resellers have a better chance to combine price and quality than those with much more fixed overhead occupying a bricks-and-mortar physical presence in the community. Some examples: Wal-Mart is known for lowest prices, often for identical merchandise found in other stores for more.

Startup Pricing: Are You Selling A Giffen Product?

InfoChachkie

In his premier film appearance in the blaxploitation send-up “I’m Gonna Git You Sucka,” Chris Rock inadvertently addresses a key pricing challenge faced by most entrepreneurs. Watch this 93-second clip and see if you can identify the pricing pitfall addressed in this humorous snippet.

A Great Product Will Fail Unless You Price it Right

Startup Professionals Musings

One of the toughest decisions for a startup is how to price their product or service. The alternatives range from giving it away for free, to pricing based on costs, to charging what the market will bear (premium pricing). The customer advantage is a lower entry cost.

How To Create Customer Value And Profit To Survive

Startup Professionals Musings

As a startup advisor, I see too many entrepreneurs get distracted by technology or their favorite cause, and then wonder why they can’t find an investor, attract customers, or build a long-term business. Customers now put big value on experience, social impact, empowerment, and feedback.

6 Keys to Marketing Customer Experience vs Products

Startup Professionals Musings

Not so long ago, every business assumed that the keys to success were the highest quality product, the best value for the buck, and the best customer service. Now all we hear about is providing the best “customer experience.” Customers don’t want prescriptions - they seek possibilities.

8 Initiatives To Make Your Customers Loyal Advocates

Startup Professionals Musings

If you can’t provide a memorable customer experience, your startup won’t survive very long these days. You now need more than loyalty from your customers -- they need to be your best advocates. The days of pushing new and marginal performers into customer service are gone.

How To Win Key Decision Points With Today’s Customers

Startup Professionals Musings

Today’s customers are much more in control of their buying decision, as they have more choices and more information than ever before. Bloom’s classic book, “ The New Experts: Win Today's Newly Empowered Customers.” This new world is all about empowered customers.

Ten Top Product Pricing Models for Startups

Startup Professionals Musings

One of the toughest decisions for a startup is how to price their product or service. The alternatives range from giving it away for free (like Twitter), to pricing based on costs, to charging what the market will bear (premium pricing). Portfolio pricing. Feature pricing.

Your Product Needs to be 10x Better than the Competition to Win. Here’s Why:

Both Sides of the Table

He said it was better than the Yellow Pages because he would provide pricing transparency. He wanted to build direct customer relationships to get product feedback but only 2% of customers would ever return their registration cards.

Smart Entrepreneurs Know Customer Buying Moments

Startup Professionals Musings

Today’s customers are much more in control of their buying decision, as they have more choices and more information than ever before. Bloom’s recent book, “ The New Experts: Win Today''s Newly Empowered Customers.” This new world is all about empowered customers.

6 Ways To Drive Success Through Customer Experience

Startup Professionals Musings

Not so long ago, every business assumed that the keys to success were the highest quality product, the best value for the buck, and the best customer service. Now all we hear about is providing the best “customer experience.” Remember, customers are the reason you do what you do.

Custom 101

‘Customer Experience’ Is Today’s Business Benchmark

Startup Professionals Musings

Not so long ago, every business assumed that the keys to success were the highest quality product, the best value for the buck, and the best customer service. Now all we hear about is providing the best “customer experience.” Remember, customers are the reason you do what you do.

4 Customer Decision Moments And How To React To Each

Startup Professionals Musings

Today’s customers are much more in control of their buying decision, as they have more choices and more information than ever before. Bloom’s classic book, “ The New Experts: Win Today's Newly Empowered Customers.” This new world is all about empowered customers.

A Stronger Economy Means More Competitive Threats

Startup Professionals Musings

Porter proposed his Five Forces framework for analyzing the competitive environment which I think makes even more sense today. Every existing business, as well as every startup, needs to reassess their product or service in the context of these five forces: Intensity of competitive rivalry.

Entrepreneurs Need To Play Favorites With Customers

Startup Professionals Musings

Most startups are happy to find any customer, and will hang on for dear life to every one. Every smart entrepreneur needs to realize that trying to treat every customer the same, with limited resources, may mean that you are treating them all poorly, or at least limiting your own growth.

Ten Ways to Differentiate Your Customer Service

Startup Professionals Musings

A while back, I wrote about the importance of a “ sustainable competitive advantage ,” and outlined the business plan value and limitations of patents and competitor feature comparisons. But once you start selling products, all of these pale in comparison to your level of customer service.

Using Technology to Realize a Competitive Advantage

Tech Zulu Event

Computers and the Internet have now brought in a new era that relies on data to make profitable business decisions in the competitive environment. Below is a full explanation of how small businesses can leverage technology to earn a competitive advantage in the marketplace.

10 Ways to Make Your Customer Experience Stand Out

Startup Professionals Musings

A while back, I wrote about the value of Michael Porter’s Five Forces framework for analyzing the competitive environment, and using every opportunity to highlight and emphasize your relative advantages, whether they be price, features, or bargaining power. Exceed customer expectations.

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Master of Customer Acquisition, Matt Coffin, On Startups …

Both Sides of the Table

He is very hands-on and helpful – especially for any company looking into customer acquisition. People want to invest in people they trust – once you’ve made money for someone you can always go back, and even get better pricing.

A Valid Business Model Requires Real Customer Sales

Startup Professionals Musings

The real milestone, proving the business model, is that first product sold for full price to a total stranger, leaving him happy. There is no substitute for good market research, talking to experts, analyzing the competition, and listening to potential customers from day one.

More Drama on the Cloud Price Wars Front

Tech Zulu Event

Perhaps it should come as no surprise that the cloud price wars have flared up once again. After taking a brief hiatus amidst nervous tensions, competition between cloud computing vendors has reached a fever pitch in the past month.

5 Ways to Keep the Right Customers for Your Startup

Startup Professionals Musings

Most startups are happy to find any customer, and will hang on for dear life to every one. Every smart entrepreneur needs to realize that trying to treat every customer the same, with limited resources, may mean that you are treating them all poorly, or at least limiting your own growth.

Entrepreneurs Need to Master Competitive Selling

Startup Professionals Musings

In my own effort to keep up with the times, I just finished a new book by Landy Chase, titled “ Competitive Selling: Out-Plan, Out-Think, Out-Sell to Win Every Time.” This concept applies equally well to convincing investors to fund you, employees to join you, or customers to buy from you.

6 Ways To Stop Selling And Get More Customers Buying

Startup Professionals Musings

It’s all about getting customers to make a buy decision. Customers are more in control of their buying decisions than ever before, with the wealth of alternatives and information available online, and interactive access to sources they trust via social media.

8 Keys to Award Winning Startup Customer Service

Startup Professionals Musings

Most leaders agree that poor customer service is a business killer today, in terms of lost customers, reduced profits, and low morale. Yet the average perception of customer experience continues to decline. Know your customers intimately.

Recession-proof Pricing

SoCal Tech Calendar

Thursday, November 6, 2008 -- "Recession-proof Pricing Strategies for a Multi-platform World" Technology Council. Today's technology companies increasingly must deliver products on multiple platforms to satisfy customer demand and competitive pressures. The need to provide "platform de jour" is complicated by a slowing economy and customer desires to maximize their purchasing dollar and to delay payments.

7 Ways To Survive The Retail Customer Shift To Online

Startup Professionals Musings

What neither group seems to fully comprehend is that retail needs to fundamentally change to succeed, far beyond the addition of an online component, to meet the experience expectations of today’s generation, an oversupplied global marketplace, and technology for instant pricing and distribution.