How To Gain A Competitive Advantage Over Your Competition By Knowing Your Market Sophistication Level
Last night, I was round my parents to catch up with them and see how they’ve been.
Now, if you’re parents are anything like mine you may notice a regular occurrence happen every time you see them, there always seems to be some kind of ‘problem’ with their computer.
And last night, was no different for me. However, it reminded me of a…
Strategy That Many Businesses
So I get round there, have a chat and then that dreaded question comes…
“Oh James, while you’re hear….”
Straight away I’m thinking “Oh, here we go”.
So they then begin to tell me there ‘problem’, and I put problem in quotes as it rarely is actually a problem.
But anyway, they begin to explain what it is so I then begin to tell them how they can go about fixing it.
At this point, I could see the blank expressions forming on their faces as I was speaking, it was like I was speaking Spanish (and I can’t speak spanish, maybe just the essential stuff, you know like “Puedo tener una cerveza por favor” which is “can I have a beer please”, and that’s hard enough).
It was at this point when it reminded me about…
How Businesses Communicate With Their Customers and
Potential Customers is Often WRONG!
I know, my mind works in a bizaar way.
You see, many advertisements communicate in the way that “assumes” their customers or clients have just as much knowledge on the product or service as they do.
Have you heard the phrase, ‘Assume nothing, question everything’?
Well, this is the perfect time to adopt this philosophy as it can be one of the biggest causes to why you’re advertising doesn’t pull the kind of response you hoped it would.
Think about it.
You can have the best product or service in the world, but if you cannot effectively communicate the benefits and the value it will bring to your customers or clients, they most likely are not going to buy.
It’s Like Trying to Talk to Someone Who
Doesn’t Speak Your Language
Makes sense, right?
But it’s rarely ever thought about when it comes to how you communicate what you have to offer in your actual advertising and marketing.
If you make the conscious decision to think how you should do this, you’ll put yourself in a much better position to resonate with your customers or clients and this will translate into generating more sales and give a competitive advantage over your competition because… they won’t be doing it.
One of The Most Effective Ways To Do This Is
To Understand Your Market Sophistication Level
Let me explain…
You see, by knowing your market sophistication level, it allows you to understand how to best position (communicate) your product or service in your market so the majority of people will actually buy or do whatever it is that you want them to do.
There are five different market sophistication levels in total and by understanding how to gauge what level of sophistication your market is at, you’ll have a much better chance of increasing sales and gaining the competitive advantage you want.
So with that said, let me give you the overview of each level, starting with…
Market Sophistication Level 1…
New Invention, First to Market
This level represents a market whereby you are the first in it, you have something to offer that no one else can.
So this means you’re dealing with prospects who have zero sophistication or knowledge about your product or service.
Market Sophistication Level 2…
Time To Beef Up Your Claim
This level is if you’re second to the party so to speak, it’s when you have more than just one company competing in the same market.
But this time if the claim which was made in level one is still working – then you copy it, but you beef it up, really enlarge your claim and out do the competition over with features.
Market Sophistication Level 3…
Switching From The ‘What’ To The ‘How’
When you move into level three, it means your market has now been exposed to all the claims (even all the extreme ones) and its no longer ‘hitting home’ to your prospects anymore, the advertising messaging is now all sounding the same and no one can distinguish one companies product or service from the other so you have to upgrade your type of advertising message.
You do this by switching away from ‘What’ your product or service does, to now ‘How’ it does it – and how it does it in a ‘new’ way by introducing a new “Feature”.
Market Sophistication Level 4…
So in level 4, the idea behind getting ahead of the competition here is you keep on elaborating on the feature (not the promise), you stack more and more features on, in order to counteract your competitions third level feature, making their one feature, no match compared with your two, three, four or five features.
Market Sophistication Level 5…
Pulling On The Emotional Drawstrings
So now, at this stage, your messaging switches away from the promise/claim/feature approach and it now turns to emotional messaging.
This is all about hinging on your markets deep psychology buying behaviours and motivational behaviours.
Your messaging is now designed on the emotion, the feeling behind buying the product or service, how the buyer acquires their role in society, or the social roles they want to have amongst their friends and peers.
So What Happens After?
Now, after your market matures to level five, completely new markets are created off of the back of them, new inventions or new products or new services get developed and the whole cycle repeats itself.
Now, for example, going back to when I was talking to my parents about fixing the computer problem, it was like I was talking market sophistication level 4, to a market sophistication level 2.
Hence why – as the cockneys would put it, they didn’t have a Danny La Rue (clue) – to what I was saying and therefore didn’t understand the value and benefits of what I was saying to them.
And the same happens when you advertise.
If you communicate in a way whereby the majority of your market do not understand what you are saying, they will not know what you have to offer but more importantly, not value it.
When Your Message Is Understood By Your
Market, It’ll Produce The Kind Of Results You Want
So if you take the time to know what your market sophistication level is, you’re not going to make the same silly mistakes many businesses make and many marketers make.
Instead when you create your advertisements, marketing campaigns or promotions they’ll be structured in a way which is congruent with your market sophistication level.
It’ll cut through all the competitive noise, stand you out from the rest and actually resonate with your customers or clients.
And the better you do this, the better your sales figures will be.
Hope you enjoyed this, I’ve really enjoyed writing it for you and I know this can sound all a bit complicated and time consuming to work out but when you get it right, it’ll make it all worth it. I promise.
I’d love to get your thoughts on this so please leave your comments below.