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As a budding entrepreneur, you would have been plagued with the term ‘saturated market’ every now and then. You may have entered the marketplace with a great business plan and an excellent product or service. However, is that really enough? Honestly speaking, it never is.
Though there are many elements that strike fear in an entrepreneur’s heart, the good news is that there are many different ways you can compete, stay relevant and thrive in an oversaturated marketplace. Instead of getting intimidated, look at it as a challenge that will encourage you to continually innovate.
Whether you’re thinking of entering a competitive marketplace or have already found yourself in one, apple these three steps that will enable you to thrive.
3 Steps to Thrive in a Saturated Market
- Find a niche or a sub-niche: Most entrepreneurs fail in a saturated market because they overlook profitable niches they can serve. Instead of trying too hard finding your niche, how about finding a niche sub-group where you can specialise. With this approach, you can cater to a specific audience and over time, make it big. For example, you can open a home-cleaning service that caters only to senior citizens and the elderly, contrary to the market where most players cater to young professionals and millennials. Remember, an underserved niche always provides great opportunities to a savvy entrepreneur. As long as you have a unique solution that solves a problem or caters to a certain demographic, you’ll survive and thrive.
- Focus on providing value: In an oversaturated market, resist the temptation of imitating your competitors. Your audience is tired of receiving old-wine-in-a-new-bottle. They’re looking for something fresh. Thus, serve them scoops of freshness while retaining your own brand and identity. A fool-proof way of differentiating yourself or standing out is by adding value to existing products or services. For example, if you’re running a spa business, maybe you can give your clients 15 minutes extra massage time for the same price or consider add-ons that are relatively inexpensive. You can even implement frequent-buyer programs or reward points. When you decide to add value, you not only attract a larger audience but strengthen customer retention too.
- Your brand’s story matters: In a saturated niche, your story, packaging and branding matter even more. This will help you differentiate yourself from your competition and charge what your product is worth. Svami – India’s first homegrown tonic water is a perfect example of this. Before they entered the tonic water market, Schweppes was every gin-drinkers go-to drink. They changed that with their fancy packaging, flavours and high price. Owing to their branding and unique approach, they were instantly able to forge an instant connection with their target audience.
While penetrating into a saturated market has its own set of challenges, the only way to stay relevant and give your brand a competitive advantage is by filling the gap and leading potential customers to outcomes they desire.