Competition exists no matter what field you’re in. Some business owners feel that competition helps them enhance their service further, while some wished that they had no competition to deal with. We had a chat with 6 companies from different industries, to know what their takes are on this matter.
Before that, here is Supahands’ Head of Digital Marketing, Amine Chraibi’s, opinion on the subject. He says: “If the competition is very strong, then customers have stronger bargaining power, turning the industry into a price war, which gives profitability a negative impact. However, if an industry lacks competitors, the few players in the market have to spend time and money into educating the market about their products/services.
“So, the ideal situation is to have a healthy level of competition and number of suppliers, as well as an educated market. To rise against competition, businesses need to differentiate themselves from their rivals based on how the customers perceive the value of their products/services.”
Ombré is an app that acts as a virtual personal fashion stylist. Using complex algorithms, the app determines clothes which would look great and suit the individual. Imran Sheik, Founder and CEO shares, “We suggest clothes to our app users based on their physique; and direct those suggestions to products from our vendors.”
When it comes to competition, he says that it is good as long as it doesn’t become a relevant factor in a company’s vision. Not only does it act as a benchmark to adjudicate data surrounding the business, but companies can use it as an opportunity to constantly improve their businesses.
Speaking of competitors – Imran genuinely feels that Shoppr and Goxip (its main rival) are very efficient in creating good content and in building a community.
He adds: “Although we’re competing in the same space, we’re targeting different segments of the market, which ultimately differentiates how we model our business. We’re targeting the fashion-conscious, not the fashionable ones. In that respect, we’re different because users’ physical traits are taken into account, and that’s the primary factor of our suggestion engine.
ParkEasy, founded in early 2014, is a Malaysian startup that is changing the way we park by saving us the hassle of searching for a spot. According to its COO, Loo Wen Hoi, this app will help you find a carpark, to make your parking experience awesome!
What sets ParkEasy from its rival – JomParking and ParkAide, is the building of a community of users, who share information with each other making parking more convenient. This is similar to how Waze initially started as it received information and updates on traffic conditions from their users, thus creating an app that was made efficient thanks to its community. On top of that, the app’s current service does not require any hardware, which makes scaling a lot easier.
He says that competition is good and vital in running a business. This is because having competitors validates that there is actually a market to tap into. Loo continues, “We always welcome healthy competition. Plus, we have also been in contact with them to create some synergy through collaboration.”
Wofollow is an Online-to-Offline (O2O) platform that bring the online consumers to retail business. As a bridge between merchants and users, the company connects with people to offer promotions via Wofollow Online Magazine and Wofollow Mobile Coupon.
What makes this company different from their rivals i.e. Manis, Offpeak and Openrice is its business model. Wofollow positions its mobile app as a free traffic driven tool that benefits the merchant. The app’s main focus is on helping merchants gain exposure within its network of social media platforms, through content marketing.
This is what Garry Boon, the Executive Director, thinks about business competition: “It is good and important to keep the industry moving forward; it will encourage us to do more innovation and improvements.”
Munchh is an upcoming food discovery app that focuses on giving customers the power to voice their experience directly to the restaurants. With two different products – CRM and communication panel for restaurants; and an eat-discovery technology for users, the mission is to bring the relationship between restaurant and its customers closer.
Steven Samuel, CEO of Munchh, believes that competition is good regardless of the industry. It assists in creating higher standard of innovation, while pushing one another to help solve the many problems in this world.
He then shares that the company is aware that its competitors like Zomato and Open Rice provides more listings compared to its current database due to first mover advantage.
To thrive in a business with competitors, you need to be different. With that in mind, Steven divulges: “Munchh focuses on customer building for restaurants and we want to use technology to make restaurants more efficient. The goal is to create the restaurant of tomorrow, where they can understand their customer better and integrate solutions that can speed up processes better.”
Cazoomi is in the software integration business, which has always been highly competitive, now more than ever, according to its CEO, Clint Wilson. He then shares his personal experience on the topic discuss – competition. “My mentor, when I first started Cazoomi told me that if you find yourself just building Cazoomi alone in a market space wondering where all the competition is, you might be all alone with no real customers.”
He took this to heart and his team started building their integration platform a few years before most any real competition like Zapier or others back in 2011 came along. Competition drives the Cazoomi team to be innovative. Instead of being content with being in a market with a single player, they took advantage of the opportunity to build a solid platform and a fabulous support system for its subscribers.
Wilson says that essentially, every quarter they would try to “learn from the enemy” so they could avoid blowups. By paying attention to the small things your competitors roll out, they can teach you the biggest lessons in being successful with your target market.
“It takes us out of our comfort zone and forces us to create better products and services on our SyncApps integration platform which serves 1000s of small businesses to large enterprises. Cazoomi Support is one of the key differentiators in our space and makes us one of the most successful startups in this space 5 years running.”
GetResponse initially started as an email marketing SaaS provider, but have since branched out to also include landing pages, marketing automation, webinars and more.
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The ability to create and host your own landing pages is a big differentiator to its local customers. Aside from that, the platform also offers localised billing and support for larger enterprise accounts.
When it comes to competition, Mellissa Lee, Head of GetResponse Malaysia says it is needed when running a business because it keeps you on your toes, regardless of where the competition is based.
“Our main competitor in this part of the world would be Mailchimp. They have done well in getting brand awareness in this region. We find many companies don’t realise that there are other options out there. So, we’re working on filling that gap.”
So, there you go. First hand insights from 6 different movers and shakers on what you can leverage on competition in the market. They all think that it can help you move forward and be much more innovative. What do you think? Share your views with us.