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How to resist business giants that want to take over your startup

Munira Rangwala
29th Apr 2017
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When you first build your startup, it may seem like the world is your oyster. You begin by carving out a space for yourself and you gradually innovate and grow without the immediate tension of competition. While this may be true, we cannot ignore the fact that we live in the era of existing tech giants and super-brands that are always on the lookout to take over the new arena that startups create. For example, in 2016 Facebook disclosed its plan to create a new professional communication tool called Workplace. This new feature operates similar to its smaller counterpart, Slack. Facebook is just one example. Big brands are gradually catching on to grassroots ideas and either building their own version or buying out the startup. However, if you don’t want to sell out, you need to show your customers exactly what they would be lacking without you. Here are three easy ways to do that:

Munira Rangwala

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Be ready to narrow down your niche

Startups usually have their target audience well mapped out. However, if a tech giant is encroaching on your territory, simply reinvent your space. For example, if you sell gym wear for women and you face competition from a global brand, simply narrow down your expertise and provide gym wear for plus-sized women. This will help you secure a much smaller but less volatile group of consumers. Niche businesses can make large profits only if they know how to stand strong in the face of competition.

Go beyond great service

Providing stellar service to your customers can take your company to the pinnacle of success. Warm service is the reason most people go to their local coffee shop instead of Starbucks. While you absolutely cannot compromise on the service you provide, good service alone won't do the trick anymore because it's everywhere. To help your startup leave a memorable experience in the minds of your consumers, you need to go the extra mile. For example, instead of simply offering home delivery to your customers, go one step ahead and allow them to choose the time that is best suitable for the delivery to reach them.

Establish a relationship with your customers

Big brands have big budgets, but not all of them have established a one-on-one relationship with their customers like you have. Use your closeness to your customers to your advantage. Get into your consumer's mind in a way that big brands can't and utilize the information you have to provide customer satisfaction. A lot of consumers today are willing to pay extra for an upgraded experience. Don't miss out on this potential revenue by combining excellent service with a fabulous user experience. You can do this by creating options that account for special occasion purchases and luxury allowances.

Even in the face of the toughest competition, you should resist succumbing to the buyout trend. Looming business giants can seem threatening, but if you concentrate on your niche, you'll be able to resist that takeover.

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