The bottom-rung loser in one town can move to another town and often become the king of his category. All it takes is weak competitors. I've seen it happen a dozen times.
Whether you dominate your marketplace won't be determined solely by the strength of your advertising. It will be determined partly by the strength of your competitors.
How good are you at what you do? How good are they?
There are 4 factors that determine business success. The most important of these, competitive environment, is the factor most often ignored. The reason, I suppose, is that business owners feel they can do nothing about it. So they ignore their competitors.
But their customers don't.
The ability to measure your strength objectively and compare it to the strength of your competitors is essential to strategic planning.
This is why Wizard Academy is developing a six-sigma Customer Experience Index, a patented instrument that will allow you to know – precisely and objectively– how you compare to each of your competitors locally. The same instrument will also compare your scores to national averages for your category in a number of critical customer touch-points. Sound interesting? Stay tuned. A Beta version of the instrument will be released in Summer '06.
Today we'll take a brief look at the four factors that govern business success. (In weeks to come we'll zoom in for a closer examination of each.) In order of importance they are:
1. Competitive Environment (strength of competitors)
2. Business Model (strategy. creation of customer expectations.)
3. Operational Execution (delivery of what was promised to the customer.)
4. Message Development (total business communication, including ad writing, décor, media planning, etc.)
When released, the Customer Experience Index will objectively measure what had previously been unmeasurable.
And you're the first to know.
Roy H. Williams
HAUNTED, I'VE MADE A DECISION – My heart was broken and my mind went back in time as I read the stories of the small business owners who applied for scholarships to the upcoming Secret Formulas Advertising Workshop. I haven't been able to get them off my mind.
I don't usually tell a lot about myself in these Monday Morning Memos, but today will be an exception:
At 34 years old, my plan was to bond with 12 business owners too small to afford the kind of advertising help they needed to help them grow. My offer was to become their strategist, media buyer and ad writer for a one-time, up-front fee of $5,000 and an ongoing fee of $500 a month. Once a year, these clients would adjust my monthly salary by the same percentage their businesses had grown during the previous 12 months. I accepted the last of the original 12 in 1992. Most of these 12 remain my clients to this day and many of them now pay me more than $100,000 a year as their companies have leaped to more than 20 times their original size. During the middle of those rampant growth years, I wrote a trio of bestselling business books, opened an academy and began to train a number of apprentices.
Last week I asked my most experienced apprentices in the US, Canada, Australia and the UK if they would be willing to repeat my original plan with 12 tiny little clients of their own. They said they would, provided the businesses were small enough to offer them significant growth potential. (In most business categories, this means a total sales volume of less than one million dollars annually.)
Roy H. Williams
THOUGHTS FOR THE NEW YEAR – “Never let the future disturb you. You will meet it, if you have to, with the same weapons of reason which today arm you against the present.” – From The Meditations of Marcus Aurelius Antoninus, (121 AD – 180 AD)
“Life is a journey, and with every step we reach a point of no return.” – Gaborn Val Orden
“In choosing one path we ignore others. And wonder what might have been.” – Binnesman
“Many adventures await you upon the road of life. Enter these doors, and take your first step…” – from a placard above The Horn and Hound Pub