2 min read What is Your Competitive Advantage
Many entrepreneurs are unaware of what gives their product a competitive advantage, confusing anecdotal stories for concrete evidence.
Competitive advantage increases revenue by 30% over the competition. This creates a loop where the extra money coming in becomes a competitive advantage to improve the startup’s product or offered services. In today’s world, you would think every business has recurring revenue. Yet, most companies that are raising funding did not structure their business for recurring revenue.
Recurring revenue helps your business in several ways:
- Opens up your business to new customers who could not afford your product previously because the one-time payment was too high; breaking the payment into smaller steps means that more customers will be able to afford it.
- Provides an ongoing revenue stream to plan your business better as you know how much you will have coming in.
- Helps you maintain engagement with the customer and gives you the chance to find new opportunities to serve the customer.
Consider adopting a platform-based approach to your business. A platform-based solution is a competitive advantage over a single product company as platforms reuse the research, design, architecture, and product packaging. Customer support is also turned into a recurring factor.
Most businesses increase in value as the customer base grows and validates the product/service. When users encourage others to join the platform, it is called Network Effects. As the number of users increases, so does the value of the platform.
If a business can harness that customer base and turn it into a community that more aggressively attracts other users, this will become a competitive advantage.
Virality is a key competitive advantage in which users invite other users to join your platform. This approach, in turn, reduces your cost of customer acquisition.
Though this is similar to Network Effects, Virality is different.
Network Effects shows the platform increasing in value based on users interacting directly, while Virality seeks to engage via social platforms online. If you build virality into your product, you will have a trackable pool of prospects to monetize and a lower cost of customer acquisition.
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Hall T. Martin is the founder and CEO of the TEN Capital Network. TEN Capital has been connecting startups with investors for over ten years. You can connect with Hall about fundraising, business growth, and emerging technologies via LinkedIn or email: firstname.lastname@example.org