If you’re not a winner, you’re not always a loser. If you’re not a leader, you’re not always a follower. And even if you’re at the top of your industry, you can still be a challenger brand.
Of course, there’s nothing wrong with being a challenger brand. And there’s certainly nothing wrong with being an industry leader. In fact, being a challenger brand is a business mindset that opens up a world or opportunities.
Challenger brands are driven by the need to take down the industry gorillas, systematically, one winnable step at a time. Identify those battlefields where you can not only compete, but you can win. How?
Life as a challenger brand means working within the constraints of what might be a limiting budget and the potential of being marginalized by the marketplace. So, how do you turn heads to secure more resources to play with in the future? Here are some ways you can stand out as a challenger brand.
- Think Outside the Box. Large, established gorilla companies have a certain image they’re obligated to portray. Otherwise, they risk alienating their longtime base supporters. Challenger brands, on the other hand, can embrace the freedom of being as creative and innovative as their imaginations will allow. Focus on what’s best for your business, not the interests of shareholders or the corporate bureaucracy.
- Outwork the Competition. Sixty percent of consumers who use social media to lodge complaints with businesses expect a response within the hour. Monolithic organizations can’t pull that off. You can. Take the time to reach people on a personal level – even if the initial contact isn’t a pleasant one for the customer – and you’ll win loyal followers more often than not.
- Know Who You Are. Many companies try to be all things to all people, and it frequently backfires – partially because they don’t have enough resources, but more importantly because they first must establish their own brand identity. Knowing who you are as a business and where your strengths lie – and where they don’t lie – is vitally important as you attempt to develop your company’s personality. That personality dictates how you’ll interact with, and be perceived by the more established brands in the marketplace.
- Take Risks.You don’t have to gamble your company’s future away, but there are times when you can try something that might not be what the marketing textbooks indicate as sound, proven marketing sensibility. Try it anyway! Risks taken on a small scale are merely tests. But when those tests show undeniable results, it’s time to change things on a larger scale.
- Embrace Technology.The modern marketing climate makes it easier than ever for unheralded brands to make their voices heard. Larger companies might not be quick to react to trends in technology, particularly when it comes to social media. Take advantage of their inaction and establish a presence where your competition has neglected to do so.
Want to learn more about how to take on the world as a challenger brand? Reach out to us.