Archive for the ‘Sweet Spot’ Category

The Sweet Spot – Where to Look to Gain a Competitive Advantage

Sunday, March 28th, 2010

In order to get users to not only use our products, but also champion them, we need to differentiate from the competition and find a competitive advantage. Simply copying the current offerings won’t usually do much for us. If I go out and build a google clone, i’m not likely to get much traction. Conversely, offering products that users don’t want or can’t figure out how to use won’t do much for us either. If I build a google clone, but show the results in random order to differentiate my product, then I won’t gain many users either. And if I design a product that I cannot deliver, then I’ll get nowhere fast as well. I can decide to offer every user who does a web search on my site $5, but I don’t have the capabilities to fund that. So we find the sweet spot in the area seen in the graphic below.

Where Differentiation Should Live

If I can find, design and deliver unique products, features and functionality that users want, then I’ll have a chance to thrive. If I simply aim for parity, the center section where the 3 circles intersect, then I’ll be another me-too and won’t have much chance at gaining traction or winning a large share of the market unless I differentiate on price or some other facet that can bring diminishing returns.