What is Competition doing now?
- Published on Tuesday, 29 October 2013 14:16
- Bob Cannon
- 1,062 Comments
“What is Competition doing now?” This critical question is frequently misunderstood by many would be inventors. How many times have I heard the response that, “I don’t have any competition, there is nothing else out in the market like my product.” It entirely misses the point that the prospective customer is doing something currently that would be replaced by your new product idea. Think about it for a moment. The automobile was totally unique, but people used horses to get around before. The ball point pen was totally unique, but it replaced the fountain pen. The cell phone replaced the phone booth. The iPod replaced the transistor radio. Virtually every product you can think of replaced something else that allowed the prospective customer to achieve a similar if not the same end.
If you don’t know what is being done now, how can you explain the features and benefits of your new product or service? Does it save time, money or effort over what is being done now? Does it do something that satisfies my ego? What makes your idea different than what is being done now and why would I want to do that? These questions are key to developing the product offering that will move your idea towards commercial success.
It is important to consider your competition from the perspective of the end-user, but it is equally beneficial to think about these questions from the perspective of your distribution partners as well. There may well be some aspects of what is being done now that need to be considered or superior programs developed to improve the path to market. The same can be said for the retailers if they are a part of your distribution as well.
Having a great product is critical to marketing your new product, but you will never know how great your product really is until you find out, “What is Competition doing now.”