Brand differentiation is a way for a business to be recognized in their field. A company could easily stand out at the top because of its unique and differentiated products, as well as its value proposition. However, another company could be playing on cost rather than implementing product differentiation. Managing your cost is important, but it doesn't promise you consistent growth if you are in a perfect competition market. This is because sooner or later, there will be a competitor that would offer a price lower to yours. Cost and product differentiation are both important in any industry. You must try to experiment with your products to ensure you provide the most unique and cheapest products in the industry.
Why Is There A Need For This?
The world is changing at a fast pace, and consumers are continually looking for unique products for their lifestyle. The first thing a company should look out for is its consumer. You have to satisfy your consumer or else your products won't be around the market for a while. You should work on how to better serve your customers rather than squeezing every nickel and dime for yourself. However, companies are reluctant to bring in change, especially the older ones and they are too used to the way they do things. Customers would rate those older companies as an innovation-less company. They would not buy your products for the future and this would defame your company.
You Lose Customer Following:
In the worst scenarios, the company might lose its followers. This is a dark phase for the company. As this time era is all about your reach, losing following pushes you in the back of the line. If you are planning to bring in changes in product for the future, you would have a negligible audience to promote that change. As the customers would still consider you with zero innovation, this can damage your current and future growth.
Less Differentiated Products Are Prone To Be Replicated:
Do you really want to be basic? Of course, we all believe in the comfort of being basic, but you and your company must get out of the comfort zone to grow. That might mean stop being basic! Being a basic company with basic products means competitors that easily can replicate your products. Because you are not habitual of bringing in frequent changes to your products, they are easily copied. Competitors can replicate the parts of your product and can find them at lower prices. As they would be paying lesser than you, this would cause them to have a lower cost price. Since you aren't backing your higher rates than them with innovative products, people won't buy from you. You lose your market share and profit just by practicing the routine items for several years.
Experiments Lead To Innovations:
This phrase is very true when you are experimenting with your products. A planned experiment would help you to identify what changes you can bring to your product as well as how to potentially lower your price to stay competitive. This would add distinguishing features for your product. No matter how small these features might seem, they are for sure noticed by customers and considered whenever they make a purchase. Even if you don't end up getting an innovated product, there would be learning for your next try. You can put these learnings in your next experiment and end up getting an even better product than this. So, you must never stop experimenting even if you fail, as this would at least help your learning.
It is 2020, a new year, a new decade, and maybe time for a new career for you! Although the grass always seems greener on the other side of the fence, it is not a piece of cake to start a company. Every step needs time to work in the right manner. Not only is it a challenge when you are not able to find the right investors for your business, but it could also be a challenge assembling the best team. You need to implement your expertise at every stage because every stage is a challenge. But no worries, it is normal as the initial days of the business are why you might face a lot of difficulties. It would be best if you were smart enough to use your expertise and knowledge at the right time. At times you even have to face a situation where you do not know the best way to be chosen. For this reason, your accumulated knowledge will always be the best solution.
Knowledge is Always the Key to Success:
To be active or be dead? That is the one question you must ask yourself daily. Some people spend all day watching TV instead of learning new skills. But have you ever thought that would this be beneficial in the long run?
Well, at some point, this perception is proven to be wrong. For example, Malcolm X was arrested at the age of 19, and instead of wasting his time in prison, he chose to stay alive and educate himself in the prison library. He could've been dead and do nothing instead of learning, but he chose to study, which exposed him to learn how to read and eventually even start a movement.
If you want to be a knowledgeable business owner, then you need to understand the importance of getting knowledge. You need to understand how knowledge can make you a skillful entrepreneur. Especially with the world-changing at such a rapid pace, you need to stay alive and learn new skills daily and be adaptable.
Be Skilled and Use Your Expertise:
It is important to be a highly skilled entrepreneur. You need to show your expertise at every step to face all the challenges. One of the biggest and the common mistakes that most entrepreneurs do is that they do not implement their skills at the right time. Many entrepreneurs were experts in a field before striking out to start his/her company when the realization of the potential for a tremendous change for the industry crosses his/her mind. This is why it is ok to be an expert in a field before starting a company as no one knows a field better than the experts in the field.
Build And Grow As Much As You Can:
Never miss an opportunity to grow. You are always presented with hundreds and thousands of opportunities. You need to be vigilant enough to figure them out. You need to build a strong trust for your customers. Especially if you own online business, then trust-building is extremely crucial. You should also spread your audience and grow them as much as you can. Always remember, the higher the reach, the stronger is the brand awareness. Your expertise in communication skills is a must.
Your level of expertise can make you a successful business owner. You just need to implement it in the right manner. It would be best if you determined your potentials to grow yourself. Remember, if you are dead if you stop growing
REFERENCES AND CITATIONS:
Although Google might not be the best thing that has happened to your privacy, Google Adwords could still be a gamechanger for your business. Google still has a huge market share in search engines. You definitely want your business to come up after your potential customer searches for it on a search engine.
You may have heard of Google Ads and know a little about how it can drive more customers to your products/services, but you still hesitate to use it because it seems difficult or unfamiliar. This article will walk you through the nitty-gritty of putting your business on Google Ads and bring you one step closer to more sales, more leads, and more web/app traffic.
Before we get our hands on, let us grasp a basic understanding of the structure of Google Ads. In Google Ads, a campaign is where you hold all your ads for a specific group of products/services/pages with the same goal. For example, you want to increase the traffic of individual pages of your website; you should put the ads for these pages under the same campaign. Under each battle, you can create different ad groups. An ad group is where you host the ads for the same or similar products/services/pages. One ad group usually contains at least three final ads and dozens of keywords to serve for the final ads. You want to make sure that the products in the same ad group are similar to each other, so it is much easier for you to tailor the keywords and ads to fit the products. In a nutshell, there are three layers in Google Ads: campaign - ad groups - ads and keywords.
After we gain a big picture of Google Ads, we can start to work on your first ads on Google Ads now. First of all, you need to have your own landing page(s) ready to land your potential customers acquired from Google Ads. People who see and click your ad on Google will go directly to the landing page you assigned to that certain ad. After you have your landing page(s) on hand, go to the Google Ads homepage (https://ads.google.com/home/) and click the “Start Now” button. Input your email and your website URL. If you do not have a website, you can use your landing page(s) instead.
If your email is not Gmail and you do not have a Google Account, you will be asked to set up your Google Account first (shown below). If you have a Google Account that you want to associate with your Google Ads, you can click the ‘Sign In’ to log in to your Google Account.
After you set your Google Account, you are ready to choose the budget for this campaign. Remember that you are only charged when someone clicks your ads. You can start with a low budget and see which ads and keywords are performing well and invest more gradually.
Then you need to select the location, network, and keyword to reach your target audience. The location ranges from local to worldwide. If you are a local business, you probably wouldn't want the global option to waste advertising budget. The network decides whether your ads will only be shown under Google search results or also be shown in Google partner’s sites. In the keywords section, you can come up with some keywords that your target audience would use to search for your products and products similar to yours, or keywords that best describe your product/services/pages. You do not want your keywords to be too broad and general since this will attract many visitors who are actually not interested in your products but mistakenly click your ads and cost you money.
You can leave the ‘Set your bid’ part as it is. For the fourth section, you need to brainstorm your headlines and descriptions for your first ad. Remember to include one or two keywords in your headlines. You can see the preview of your ads on the right side in real-time.
Congrats! This is the last step!
Once you have finished all these, you can save and continue to the payment page. After that, you can access your Google Ads account and start to play with it.
Have you ever felt that you’re superior over others just because you are at a higher post than them? That quality might be one reason why your work performance has been low. Ego plays a massive part in tarnishing your business performance, along with your relationship with your peers. It’s essential to figure out where you’re going wrong and learn from your mistakes.
Are you unaware of how your ego is playing a part during work? Let’s look at some behaviors, so you can become aware of what your ego is doing to your work performance and environment.
How is your ego killing your business?
1. Over-estimating your abilities
You’re someone that believes they can achieve anything. Even though this is a positive mindset that one needs to have for work but don’t go overboard with it. If you set unachievable goals for yourself and your team based on your inflated ego, which will, in turn, harm your business.
2. Lack of learning
Due to the complex that you’re incredibly knowledgeable, you don’t indulge in more learning activities. You’re stuck in a paradox where there’s no learning or growth. How do you think this will affect your business? Egoistic minds, along with not trying to learn more, tend to ignore any criticism being put forward. Instead of working on being more productive, these criticisms are taken personal because of their ego.
3. Decisions solely based on your approval
Is it possible for you to know everything? You being the final decision maker without involving other people in this process is extremely harmful to your business.
What can you do to keep your ego at bay and learn from your mistakes?
1. Stop and think
Before reacting to any criticism or differing opinions, stop. Then, think of the pros and cons. It may be difficult to do so at that start, but you’ll get the hang of it. Be accepting of different opinions for your business to grow.
2. Quit the blame-game
Your ego leaves you with no option but to point fingers at someone for any mishap. Learn how to stop. Evaluate the situation and figure out how to correct the problem rather than blaming others.
3. Treat everyone equally
Learn how to be kind and respectful towards all your colleagues. Rather than pointing out differences in stature and designation, incorporate healthy conversations. This would boost morale in your business and would also result in better productivity.
4. Take credit for success and failure
It might be easy for you to take credit for any success, but the real deal is when you acknowledge your failures. Your ego is kept aside, and you face head-on with where you went wrong.
Ego is generally considered a negative trait to have when it comes to the business environment. Focus on what mistakes you’re making when it comes to your ego and learn how to make amends. Realizing where you’re wrong is critical when it comes to learning from your mistakes. Stashing your ego away will definitely help to create a more friendly working space for you and your colleagues.
Ideas play an essential role in our daily lives. It gives us an edge to improve and excel in different fields. Ideas also play a vital and pivotal role in business too. Amazing ideas can lead a company towards better earning and growth. The key to the success of a business is to have developed and integrated designs, which might include close analysis of the competitors, targeting a specific audience as per the nature of the product, mission and visions should be indicated. Above all, everything should be well-drafted.
There are many benefits of good ideas for the business such as creative ideas lead towards building network and associations within the market, strengthens the brand name, generate active and passive income, expands the business and strengthens the economy as a whole.
On the other hand, sometimes these business ideas can be proved dangerous for the world as well, even if they look innocent enough from the surface. Here are a few factors:
Destruction of Humanity and Nature
The greed for maximizing profits leads to the destruction of humanity and nature. These profit-maximizing ideas are based on threats to humanity and nature, which is what most defense companies are doing. They are producing weapons, and their excuse is to protect humanity, but in reality, they are doing the most destruction.
Polluting the Environment
Industries are polluting the environment causing health problems for the citizens. One notable example is the fast fashion industry. Most of them do not comply with environmental standards and pollute the water with their fabric dye. Even if their tags claim that they are environmentally friendly, the reality is that they are hazardous for the world.
A Threat to Existing Economy
Remember when fax, landline, and floppy discs became irrelevant with the technology advancement? People with existing jobs became irrelevant due to technological advancement. However, one could argue that this is a great thing for humanity as things are moving at a faster pace now.
Harmful for Human Health
Business ideas such as manufacturing cigarettes are harmful to human health. Startups who are inventing vapes need to grow their market share, and they are recruiting customers from the teenage population. Although the market to be for people who are quitting smoking, they are producing addictive fruity flavor vapes causing teenagers to be addicted to their nicotine products. A recent survey shows an alarming rate of 24.7% of teenagers is addicted to vaping.
Mind-blowing business ideas such as penetrating in other markets by low balling can create rivalries on national and international grounds. This can affect the economy politically, socially, and economically. It can also cause severe tensions between trading countries in the world.
Promoting Immorality and Indecency in the Society
Some of the entertainment businesses can seriously affect and shape our society. This doesn't even need to be traditional Hollywood and blockbuster movies that affect teenagers. It was proven that social media affect teenagers, and recently, Instagram admitted that it didn't confirm the age of its users. Think about the many influencers on that platform that probably have been displaying inappropriate behavior to children under 13.
Although there are side effects to businesses, some are milder or could be a better side effect than others, some are positive, and some are negative. The examples used in the effects above all look like typical businesses, but all have some serious side effects.
There are always advantages and disadvantages of what we do and pursue. This is why it should always be kept in mind that we should always strike a balance between right and wrong. Set the year right and change the world for the better instead of being too dangerous for the world.
REFERENCES AND CITATIONS
Alibaba is a unicorn in many ways. The founder, Jack Ma, had always looked like an underdog. From rejection from a hotel manager position to Harvard University, he had faced rejections almost all his life. Yet, his company became an eCommerce giant. From the latest Softbank presentation, it looks like Beyonce of Destiny's Child, Alibaba alone was holding the whole portfolio up.
This e-commerce platform has gained the attention of millions of people across the globe. There are non-stop transactions taking place through this platform daily.
Jack Ma's philosophies
Jack Ma was an ordinary man, an English teacher by profession, before being known as a business tycoon. Throughout his life, even after rejections, he made sure not to lose his optimism and built an internet giant.
He was hopeful when he first heard about the internet during a visit to the United States in the 90s. With the help of 17 friends in his apartment, he established a digital marketplace that connected Chinese customers with manufacturers after raising $5million. He immediately saw growth and opportunity from his websites alibaba.com and 1688.com
Then in 2000, Jack Ma took $20 million from Softbank, which turned into a $60 billion by September 2014 when Alibaba IPOed.
This investment had helped Alibaba launch and improve many of his products, including Taobao. In 2005, when Jerry Yang from Yahoo tried launching a site similar to eBay in China, he found it defeated by Taobao. So Yahoo decided to invest $1billion to help the growth of Alibaba.
What strategies did Jack Ma follow?
Jack Ma is known as a long term thinker. He is willing to sacrifice any short term losses over long term gains. Jack Ma also believes that one can only achieve greatness if they are passionate about their dreams. He said many times that businesses that don't have a proper mission or dream, usually tend to fail. Dream and mission are the things that could drive long term thinking.
There are plenty of strategies that Jack Ma follows to ensure that his company reached high levels of growth.
The most important factor that helps in growing a company, according to Jack Ma, is to not focus on hiring top executives. The growth of Alibaba lies mainly in the hands of Jack Ma and his 17 friends that helped him throughout his career in the Alibaba group. He believes in effective communication and teamwork enabled their growth and productivity.
Another factor Jack Ma emphasizes is making sure to keep an optimistic mindset. He has been a problem-solver his entire life. After failing multiple times initially, he diversified his business to the eCommerce sector. He's taken every opportunity and made the best out of it by keeping a positive outlook.
Jack Ma is one of the most famous examples of a self-made man. From earning $12 a month, he established a company that is valued at $480billion and growing. He recently retired as the CEO of Alibaba after setting an example of how to be the most efficient person ever.
Are we all familiar with the term innovation? Innovation means acquiring new ideas, some incredible thoughts, and imaginations, and a new way to do things. We imagine innovation to be a challenging thing done by a mad scientist, but it is happening every day in products and companies. Think about all the new products on Product Hunt every day.
Even among many types of innovations, there are two types of them, known as continuous innovations and radical innovations. To understand these terms better, we need to know what they are.
In this blog post, we will compare the difference between continuous innovation and radical innovation and how the world of startups and technology have used both to innovate and evolved.
Continuous innovation is about adding something to a concept which already exists. It is about modest, incremental, ongoing upgrades or enhancements of an existing product, service, or technologies. We are experiencing that every day in San Francisco as a new startup seems to pop up all the time with a new idea or an implementation of an old existing product. Some of these "innovations" would not stick unless there is mass adoption. And if it doesn't succeed, one must make continuous improvement, which is a method to identify opportunities while reducing waste in the process, which lean startup is all about. Continuous innovation stresses the flexibility in making strategies as well as the effectiveness of operations, especially in a business management situation.
A good example would be the iPod. Remember the iPod? iPod was an mp3 player, but Apple didn't invent the mp3 player. Tomislav Uzelac created it, but Apple made continuous innovations to the iPod with the round turning for song selection instead of buttons.
Radical innovation is about a product that destroys or supplants an existing business model in the market. A lot of startups in Silicon Valley, especially in software, are engaged in radical innovation. This type of innovation is not made for achieving short term goals. Your current ideas and processing will be fruitful in future when implied.
Let's go back to Apple. The iPhone is a radical innovation. Before iPhone was out, who'd have thought a phone could do everything that it could do? It made the flip phone irrelevant and changed up the whole industry.
Another example would be Netflix. Netflix entered the home entertainment industry in 1997 selling mail-order DVD rentals, which by the way, they still do if you live in rural America with lousy internet. At the time, Blockbuster dominated the market and didn't see Netflix as a threat. And in 2000, Netflix offered Blockbuster to buy it for $50million. The executives were so blindly shortsighted that they laughed at the offer. Look who is laughing now?
Although there are differences in continuous and radical innovation, it is very obvious that companies could use both to adapt to the times. Although both of these are contrasting, the applications of these two in the modern world still cover a wide range. Many companies focus on these concepts to put them into action. Be like Apple, adapt to the times, and eventually change the game instead of being like Blockbuster, who was left behind in the dust.
We always have heard and read that demand is created and it is not an inborn instinct. Humans are rational beings but it is extremely easy to drive them with their instincts and please them to attain or achieve something. When it comes to desires and wants, it is really easy to convert their desires and wants into needs and necessities. Therefore, we have an entire system in our society or in today's world that is pushing us indirectly to consume and get what we desire. Do we often think of how these desires are created and how influencing these ideas can become in our life? Let's see what the entire story about desires and its creation is about.
Who Are Consumers?
Consumers are those people who consume certain products and services. They are the ones who personally use the product or services. They can be the customers and users of the creators. Let's take a simple example to better understand consumers. A mother is searching for a reliable brand of diapers for the baby. The baby is the user because the baby uses and wears a diaper, not the mother. The mother is the customer or a shopper who pays for the diaper. Similarly, consumers can be customers as well. If you want to have a can of coke, you will simply go to a store, pay for your drink and then drink it there and then. This is how you are a customer that is you are paying for your drink and a consumer because you are drinking coke yourself. Consumers always think about their priority and they are always struggling to achieve and attain satisfaction. But in reality, consumers are never satisfied. They are always in search of things that give them happiness and satisfaction. Even a slight change of mindset or a change in lifestyle might give this happiness. That is why we have creators in this world. These creators help consumers to fulfill their desires as soon as possible. Consumers are all somehow dependent on the creators because they are the ones who drive the instincts or creators and develop an urge to increase demand.
How Creators are Impacting The Consumers:
Creators are the major driving force that creates an urge among the consumers. The creators develop or create those things, products or services that fulfill the need of the consumers. They portray happiness in different forms that push consumers to attain happiness as soon as possible. Eventually, consumers start considering this happiness their necessity and make these creativities a part of their life. Creators do face real challenges as well. Since every consumer has a different insight, a different mindset, and perception, therefore it is extremely difficult and challenging to caret for every individual with their preferences. It is really important that creators know the insight of the consumers and then satisfy them accordingly.
Creators need to create great products and advertise them in a way that ensures the consumers how this certain thing will give then happiness and fulfill their needs. Demand grows when creators communicate to their consumers to get the product or service by spreading more awareness and coming on top of the mind.
Stoicism was found back in the early centuries by Zeno in Athens. It is a school of philosophy of personal ethics informed by its system of logic and its view on the natural world. It laid a deep emphasis on accepting one’s fate in situations where one needs to acquire the courage to deal with extreme hardships. Zeno had this belief that some power ruled the entire world and there was a divine plan which has been followed. He defined the unpredictability of the world, and how significant it is to remain strong and steadfast. Moreover, he discussed that everything exists for a reason, human beings or any living organism in nature. Stoicism stresses the importance of religion and its belief, which may lead to help people out with their miseries in life. Stoicism was used to solve the problems of people and their issues at a time of crisis. The practices of Stoics are known as spiritual exercises. Now, there is a need to know how Stoicism works during a crisis.
Change Hindrances Into Opportunities:
People often make perceptions about things depending upon how they look at it. If they tend to not look upon things as obstacles, they will rather consider them as an opportunity to practice virtue. It maintains an optimistic view of life and getting over the unhappy state.
Embrace Everything Which Happens Around You:
Try to accept and welcome things that happen around you, which may or may not have much significance, but adore every little detail of life. You might control a few things only. By knowing that whatever happens in life to us was meant to be there for us, your life will be more content and will go effortlessly happy.
This highlights one of the most helpful and deeply emphasized practices of Stoicism. One should think of the worst before it happens, that is, the possibility of one facing all the bad situations in life. This makes it easier for one to cope up with the hardships with courage when they encounter any of the problems in life. You might not lose hope then and stay calm in various situations.
Try Being Mindful:
You should have a clear plan of action of what you are thinking of doing. There must be a reality check which you need to maintain instead of getting too much into emotions. Have a brief analysis of your actions daily so that you could learn and give your self a chance to improve. This makes one able to get better with the rest of the decisions in life.
Few of the exercises listed above are a good way of practicing stoicism. Although many people tend to believe that Stoics are unemotional and indifferent from the rest of human beings, which isn't true. Some people think stoicism is cynical, which also, isn't true. They just simply keep rationality first and know how to cope up with emotions. Stoicism tells everything how to be good to mankind and this branch of philosophy helps us to make our thought process better.
Idealism and pragmatism are very much needed in any startup. Well, there is an obvious difference between idealism and pragmatism, especially in the business world. Idealism and pragmatism can hold different perspectives as well. Idealism is what you need as motivation to start a business to change the world, but pragmatism is what will keep your startup into becoming a part of the world to drive sustainable change. Therefore, in this article, we will discuss what actually idealism and pragmatism is and what are the major differences between these philosophies.
What is Idealism?
Idealism is pursuing often unrealistic ideals that are often unrealistic at the time of chasing. Idealists are often driven by a set of strong moral beliefs and those moral principles are a must to be adopted and accepted to become a part of our life. The idealists focus on their end goal and seek a higher vision for their goal. They are always ready to go and take on risks to reach their vision because they think that their vision is well worth it. They are ready to suffer for a better future because they say that the decisions they have made are always right. They are determined to achieve long-term goals and that is why in the business world the idealist leaders always create a long term vision for their big idea. They are always working hard to attain long-term goals and sustain their business for a longer-term. They could be rigid and determined. It can be a bit difficult to please or to convince the idealistic leaders for any tweaks to their vision.
What is Pragmatism?
Pragmatism is acting realistically with the current circumstance. People who are pragmatic normally only consider the practicality of life and spends their lives based on practicality. They reject idealism when it feels that idealism is hindering their way. Since pragmatism is all about focusing on what is practical that is why the pragmatics or the pragmatic leaders in business focus on what they have in their hands right now. They don't ask the dealers to change their cards at a poker game, they work on maximizing their cards. They utilize the best option that is available at the moment. Therefore, the pragmatic leaders in business focus to achieve shorter-term goals as a means to an end. Due to this, they at times create a negative picture of them.
Differences between Idealists and Pragmatics:
Idealism and pragmatism could be opposites but they could both be applied in a startup. If you are an idealist and your cofounder is a pragmatic kind of guy, instead of coming up with conflicts, you should find a solution to work together. We cannot ignore practicality as well as morality in our companies as they are both important.