These days it is often not enough to just be good at what you do.
To survive in the new normal, businesses are becoming more data savvy to ensure they engage with the right customer, on the right channel, at the right time.
The consumer journey, together with client account data and purchasing lifecycles, are under more scrutiny than ever as companies track and plan for every stage of the consumer funnel.
Not only does this help meet the bottom line by reducing ineffective spending, it can also help to shorten sales cycles by engaging clients with fewer but more impactful messaging.
And more sales means more market share.
Market share represents a company’s sales as a percentage of the total sales for that industry. Simply put, it is the percentage of a market.
So, a company’s total sales determine its market share in relation to the overall industry in which it operates, and not just compared to its competitors.
This is an important distinction because in a leaner post-COVID business landscape where every cent counts, companies must often win market share from their competitors in order to grow.
The market share metric frequently drives tactical or strategic action across the business landscape.
It is observed closely by businesses and economists alike for signs of change or upheaval, like sharks swimming in the deep blue ocean of commerce, always eyeing up their next meal.
It has advantages over other business performance metrics because it doesn’t rely on macro-environmental variables such as the state of the economy or changes in government tax policy.
It also has other impacts on business beyond being a measure for success or failure, strength or weakness:
To win more market share businesses should be prepared to put increased time and effort into sales and marketing.
This means utilizing all the information and technology at your disposal to improve brand awareness, client interaction, and ultimately drive sales in new and engaging ways.
Client testimonials are a gold mine of intelligence when it comes to making your marketing strategy, while account-based marketing attribution allows businesses to track and understand the touchpoints clients use in arriving at a positive action.
Here are five key areas to help you win more market share:
Innovation can come in many forms, from introducing something new to the market that no one else has done yet in the form of a product or marketing strategy, or a piece of technology that gives your business the edge.
Another part of being innovative within the business sector is in finding ways to constantly adapt with the times, and a failure by companies to recognise and react to shifting cultural norms can be fatal.
According to McKinsey and Co, since the pandemic a majority of B2B companies have shifted their go-to-market model from traditional to digital, with a strong reliance on video.
It is important to try and establish differentiation not only through the product(s) your company offers, but as well through the services and channels in which current and potential clients interact with your brand.
Utilize attribution and your knowledge of the customer life cycle to improve people’s experience of doing business with your company. Find out what is working well for them.
If the consumer journey is good, use testimonials to let other clients know this. Don’t leave anything to chance.
And if you are not sure how to improve client engagement, then ask them. Surveys, newsletters with a short questionnaire, or a question-and-answer session on social media can uncover market leads and increase brand awareness.
Conducting first-hand research direct from source is invaluable, and it makes clients feel valued. And those companies which take care of their client base are less likely to lose it.
The quality of your product or service is ultimately the most important aspect of your business.
Product integrity ranked highest on customer importance indicators, with product support and service close runners up.
But being good at what you do is just the first step, you need to build on this. Lead scoring can help your sales and marketing teams identify more quality leads by ranking interest levels and sales readiness, while other martech tools like AI and automation software, and feedback loops can help to give your business the edge.
And get detailed, from everything about your product or service through to your target audience. Learn to say no to what you don’t want and focus on what you do, this will help to increase quality in those areas where it matters.
Know who you are, what you do and how you do it. Ideally, there should be some things which set your business apart from the rest, embrace this.
Start with a logo which is easily recognisable and advertise to get it seen. Make sure it is visible at industry events and help people to establish the connection between your business and the industry in which you operate.
The aim is to stand out alongside a group of similar products, to create a recognizable brand identity while maintaining quality. Good examples of this are companies like Apple, Mastercard and Cisco.
An online presence is essential, and a website is a great place not just to sell your product but also to communicate your vision to your clients to help create a stronger identity.
The most direct way to win more market share is to buy up a rival.
This occurs when one company purchases the holding stake – normally more than 50% – of the shares in another company, thereby giving it the right to ignore other shareholders and take effective control.
This is a great way to achieve rapid growth and synergy across the entire operation in a short period of time, instantly gain new customer bases, and reduce competition.
Good examples of this can be seen with how Facebook has acquired Instagram, or with Microsoft and services like LinkedIn or MSN Hotmail, which has now been incorporated into Outlook.
The drawback of acquiring competitors in this manner is that it requires massive capital and a solid investment strategy to make it happen.
It is important to remember winning more market share does not happen overnight, unless you make an acquisition.
It is a process of the deliberate tightening of business variables under your control made possible by utilising the latest technology and information at your disposal.
And remember to protect the client base you have fought so hard to win. In order to gain more market share you’ve got to build on what you already have.
For existing customers, use reward or loyalty schemes to make them feel valued. Depending on the size of the business, you could even send hand-written notes thanking clients for their business. Try to be innovative in your marketing strategy and the way your business engages its client base.
And stay relevant. Change with the times, evolve your outlook and your strategy to keep ahead of your competitors. Identify opportunities for growth ahead of time, and always keep an eye out for the next meal.