If you’re like millions of other Americans, you’re captivated by March Madness. Numerous studies have shown that billions are lost in productivity (not to mention wagered) as we watch college teams from around the country square up against one another on the hardwood.
One of the things that makes March madness so compelling is the potential for a big upset. Unless we happen to be rooting for a certain Goliath, it’s always fun to watch the Davids rise up and have their day.
That got us thinking: with another tournament about to kick off, what can smaller businesses do to “upset” bigger competitor, who might be more established and better-funded. What can they do to pull out winds – or in this case, sales – when the odds seem to be stacked against them?
In our experience, finding a way to win online when you’re outmatched on paper usually comes down to three things:
#1 Shoot a Higher Percentage With Your Customers
No matter how big or known your competition is, your business undoubtedly has some advantages over theirs. If you can find your unique strengths, you can start to carve out a niche for yourself in the market. Once that happens, you can close a high percentage of website visitors into customers. Even if you don’t rack up as many sales overall, you can probably dominate your segment in a way that a bigger business can’t. In other words, you can become more profitable within your segment of the market, even if they dominate it overall.
#2 Make the Most of Your Home Court Advantage
One huge advantage smaller companies have over bigger ones is that they are typically local to a specific area. That means they can market to nearby residents or businesses inexpensively, and do so without wasting lots of dollars on huge campaigns that are far-reaching. With Google’s recent emphasis on local and mobile search results, you can promote your company within your city or neighborhood more easily than a big business can (particularly if they have lots of ground to cover). So, make the most of your home court advantage with geographic keywords, reviews from your area, and local contact info.
#3 Get People to Root for the Underdog
In a basketball tournament, neutral viewers will often find themselves pulling for the underdog. The same thing happens when local businesses are up against big corporations. By letting buyers know you’re small, and that you appreciate their patronage, you can often bring them over to your side. That means more sales and a better reputation, but it also gives a chance for your “fans” to convince their friends, family, and colleagues to buy from you, as well.
In the world of business, millions of small upsets happen every day when buyers choose to do business with a smaller, local niche business instead of a huge, well-known entity. Take our three March Madness strategies to heart, and your company could make big headway towards taking down the competition.