Go where the competition isn’t

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I noted with interest the other day on LinkedIn how many people are now using digital marketing in their job titles, like digital marketing executive, digital marketing coordinator, digital marketing manager, etc. Compared to older terms like Internet marketing, social media marketing, and social marketing, digital marketing’s star is ascending:

Google Trends - Web Search Interest: digital marketing, internet marketing, social media marketing, social marketing - Worldwide, 2004 - present

With the ascendance of digital marketing, that space is getting crowded. Where are the spaces where your competitors aren’t?

Consider now what will make you stand out in the crowd. I haven’t received a really nice piece of paper junk mail in a really long time. I still the occasional trashy “fake government letter” mortgage offers, but in terms of a nice glossy piece of collateral, I haven’t seen one in a couple of years. I read paper catalogs that I get in the mail (and proceed to order from the company’s website when I do order) because occasionally, there are times when it’s just nice to have something to hold that doesn’t glow.

Where else can you be that your competitors aren’t? A lot of folks have rightfully questioned the value of trade shows and conferences. What if you threw your own conference? It’d probably be about as cost effective as sponsoring a booth at a bigger one, but you’d be the only brand exhibiting, sponsoring, and speaking.

A lot of folks have noted that print publication advertising costs are prohibitive or the ROI isn’t clear. Why not start your own niche publication, where the only advertiser is you, and measure on your input forms and calls how many people have come from the print edition? As a sales tool, handing someone a glossy magazine would certainly be a different, surprising way to present rather than a staid Powerpoint.

Do what others aren’t. Be where competitors aren’t. Only then can you stand out from the herd.

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