Your Competition Can Give You a Competitive Advantage16 min read

If you have competition, now you have others helping you explain the category. With competition, you can say things like, “We’re like Uber, but without the scandals.”

Seth Godin

We often point to our competition as the source of all our troubles. It’s because of our competition that we have to work harder to get readers, adjust our marketing strategy as a response to what our competition is doing, and even change the type of content we create.

If only we were in a niche of one, a monopoly of sorts.

And that’s what most bloggers, especially those who are just starting out, keep trying to do. But, just like in a game of Monopoly, playing by yourself is dull and boring, and also makes it impossible to learn, win, or call yourself the best at the game.

We all have stumbled upon such a comparison chart at least a few times during our time spent wandering the web:

It’s no secret that you will perform better and work harder if there’s someone breathing down your neck or if you’re playing catch up to whoever’s first. A hypercompetitive environment means that you either go all in or die trying.

Your competition allows you to:

  1. Define yourself relative to other bloggers in your niche. Ever tried explaining to others what something no one’s ever heard of is? Well, your competition allows you to point to them and say, “We’re like them but better.”
  2. Market yourself as an alternative to your competitors. “Cheaper, better, faster, more reliable” all require comparison. That’s when your competition comes in handy. 
  3. Set goals that are relevant to the niche you’re in. If they can do it, so can you.
  4. Adjust your strategy in order to overtake the number one player. Even if you don’t win, you will still have outperformed even your most optimistic goals.
  5. Let your everyone else struggle to convert, while you secretly labor on better content/products/services. This is something Apple does consistently. They let other big players in the industry innovate, test the waters with new technologies, and then they launch a product that’s superior to everything the competition has to offer.

Ultimately, you will come up with a far better strategy as part of a competitive environment than you will ever be able to on your own.

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