How can an entrepreneur enter a saturated market?
Marketers react to a saturated market in different ways. Many are discouraged by the very thought of entering a saturated market, others find it tough to survive in such market yet there are other entrepreneurs who not only survive but grow in a saturated market. Then there are those who are at the start of their business journey but are unfazed by a market filled with potential competitors and carve out a niche for themselves in this very market.
So what is the secret of winning business in a saturated market?
A saturated market is, in fact, a thriving market with tremendous demand and hence offers a great opportunity for growth. Thus entrepreneurs need not be intimidated by a saturated market. Instead, they should see it as an opportunity to tap into the tremendous demand that is the hallmark of such a market.
According to Seena Sharp the author of Competitive Intelligence Advantage, a saturated market is a sign that there is a lot of opportunity in the market. She is of the opinion that the key to penetrating a saturated market is change. Consumers are always looking for a change and a differentiator.
A saturated market is an active market. Why? Because in a saturated market many competitors sell similar products or services indicating that there are a large number of buyers in such a market. As the number of players is more every competitor tries his utmost to reach the maximum number of customers thus expanding the size of the market giving ample opportunity to anyone willing to enter a saturated market.
An entrepreneur can identify the negative stereotypes that exist in the industry and place his product as an alternative to the problem to penetrate a saturated market.
This is what Subway did. When it entered the market the fast food market was saturated but it carved a niche for itself by positioning itself as a healthy and fresh fast food alternative to the burgers and pizzas that are generally considered unhealthy.
Most of the established brands charge a substantial premium for their services or products and customers readily pay this premium. But at the same time, in every market, there are price-conscious customers whom you can tap to sell your product. While doing so keep in mind that what you need to do is to price your product in a range similar to your competitors’ products and services and then offer a discount to the customers. This way not only do you keep your customers happy but also let them know the true price of your product so that if you withdraw the discount in future you do not have to confront unhappy customers.
Another commonly used method to penetrate a saturated market is to go in for value-added offerings. Value-added offerings can be a great way to differentiate yourself from your competitors and can give you a substantial advantage over them. For example, in November 2016 Ola launched OlaPlay, a connected car platform for ride sharing and OlaCredit – a postpaid service that lets passengers pay for their rides. Similarly Uber has launched Uber Eats to deliver food through its app or the auto aggregator Jugnoo has introduced a number of value -added services like cash collection, wedding card delivery, milk delivery, etc to go along with its main business of ferrying passengers.
Focus on customer satisfaction
It is no secret that customer satisfaction is the biggest and the most difficult challenge for entrepreneurs in any market – saturated or not. Thus the best way to penetrate a saturated market is to work towards customer satisfaction. Customers can be your biggest and best brand ambassadors and you can use their testimonials to drive your sales even in a saturated market.
Despite adopting all the right methods getting a toehold in a saturated market is not an easy task and is fraught with the risk of failure and it is here that companies like Outsourced CMO with their vast experience of entering, retaining and expanding a market have proved their worth.