If you have siblings you know all too well how this works.  They get attention doing something so you have to do it bigger and better.  They buy the parents a gift you need to get a better one.  Sometimes we realize that rather than compete we can collaborate to create something better for both of us.

It’s the same in business we see our competitors doing something and immediately we have to do it bigger, better or cheaper, faster.  But wait, unlike competing for our parents or teachers we are competing for sales and our competitors aren’t buying from us.  Now, what do we do?

Now is the time to learn why our customers might choose our rivals and be innovative in a way that shows off what we do that will be a bigger benefit.  We learn how to better fill the need of our clients.  We find new ways to make them appreciate what we do.

Have you noticed all the online companies doing free shipping?  If one does it they all do and you the customer can use that as a wedge or in some cases just switch companies when you make a  purchase  But what would be truly innovative?  How would you like personalized e-mail about new products that fit your profile and the company can do a comparison to what you have bought?  For example; shoes, you know I had to go there.   Suppose once a month or every six weeks your personal shoe shopper sent you an e-mail about new styles similar to what you have bought and describes materials related to what you know and based on your purchases throws in something you might like to try.  Yes, it takes time but would it get you to buy more?

Now in terms of collaboration, what happens when you work with clients on certain topics and you bring in an associate who is similar but different in focus?  Your client gets better value and you and your colleague expand business opportunities.

Bring on the rivals and let them spur your creative side to innovate and maybe collaborate to grow your business.