You Know You've Made It When They Go Gunning For You

27 replies
I'll keep this generic and very short. But please learn a lesson from this. It
is an important one.

You come out with a product. It's great. It sells like crazy. Other marketers
notice. They come out with a similar product but more advanced. More bells
and whistles. And they sell it for less.

You don't have to be a brain surgeon to know what's going to happen.

You now have 3 choices.

1. Make your product better, if it's economically feasible for the money.

2. Cut your prices, if it's economically feasible.

3. Cut your losses and move onto something else.

This is the very reason that I never put all my eggs into one product. It's
literal suicide.

Imagine somebody comes out with something better than DLGuard and
sells it for $25. Sam is going to have to do some major scrambling.

Point is, you must always have a contingency plan...even if that plan is
simply to have something else to fall back on.

I could have 1/4 of my product lines wiped out by competition and still
make 6 figures a year, though barely.

When you have to worry that one person can come along and essentially
put you out of business, you have serious problems.

This may be the most important lesson you'll ever learn when creating
products and services.
#gunning #made
  • Profile picture of the author Steven Carl Kelly
    Evolve. Constantly.
    Signature
    Read this SURPRISING REPORT Before You Buy ANY WSO! Click Here
    FREE REPORT: Split Test Your Landing Pages the Easy Way
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322340].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author talfighel
    Hi Steven,

    Very interesting post I must add. Putting all your eggs in one basket is a bad idea.

    I don't have much to say so that's about it.

    Tal
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322346].message }}
  • option 4?

    -market your product better and cheaper than the competitor
    Signature


    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322359].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Jeremy Kelsall
    People see things do well and it starts a trend...I've seen it with a couple of things that I have done as well.

    Only thing you can do is fight for your market share or evolve into something better.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322361].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author James Schramko
    Reminds me of the hairdresser that
    was selling $20 haircuts.

    A hairdresser setup across the road
    and started selling haircuts for $10

    The first hairdresser put up a sign:



    "We fix $10 haircuts"


    John Ruskin said:

    "It is unwise to pay too little"

    In other words, Don't deal with the lowest bidder.

    Cheaper is rarely a winning strategic advantage.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322369].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author MaskedMarketer
    Theres more than 3 choices. Don't limit yourself inside the box

    Cutting prices works (sometimes) but can be suicide.

    Its called Creativity. I can create a product that already exists, with a different spin and angle and charge the same, more , or less...

    But ONLY lowing your prices is suicide...

    You'll be out of business eventually!
    Signature

    "One Man's Ceiling is Another Man's Floor
    "


    "I Pay Less Attention to What Men Say. I Just Watch What They Do."
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322378].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Steven Wagenheim
      Originally Posted by MaskedMarketer View Post

      Theres more than 3 choices. Don't limit yourself inside the box

      Cutting prices works (sometimes) but can be suicide.

      Its called Creativity. I can create a product that already exists, with a different spin and angle and charge the same, more , or less...

      But ONLY lowing your prices is suicide...

      You'll be out of business eventually!
      Depends. Is it economically feasible to make the necessary improvements
      to the product you have, especially if it will require a daily commitment
      that you're just not able to put in?

      Not everything is so black and white.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322397].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author MaskedMarketer
        Originally Posted by Steven Wagenheim View Post

        Depends. Is it economically feasible to make the necessary improvements
        to the product you have, especially if it will require a daily commitment
        that you're just not able to put in?

        Not everything is so black and white.
        Since its a business its going to require money and time commitment. When you got into business you should already know this.

        There are always going to be roadblocks, but its how you deal with those roadblocks that makes the difference.

        Being Creative and using creative marketing and even financing comes into play.

        Honestly, the money is the least of the worries if you're not creative.

        If I'm creative, i'll come with a creative way to get the money. I'll also outsource the work if I don't have time to do it myself.

        And if it can't be outsourced, then outsource another part of your business to do it.

        If you can't outsource anything, then that's a big problem.


        ------

        EDIT:

        Theres a whole world to market to. The online community is rather narrow. CREATIVE MARKETING
        Signature

        "One Man's Ceiling is Another Man's Floor
        "


        "I Pay Less Attention to What Men Say. I Just Watch What They Do."
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322467].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Anthony Smith
    Darwin at it's best. thats why i have numerous different ventures, from ebay, to google, to JV's, etc. the list goes on, just incase something happens to one of those ventures, i have something to fall back on. it's a crappy lesson to learn the hard way i will tell you that much!
    Signature

    Need help finding affiliates?
    Need a joint venture broker?
    www.jv-brokers.com

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322386].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Steven Wagenheim
      Originally Posted by Anthony Smith View Post

      Darwin at it's best. thats why i have numerous different ventures, from ebay, to google, to JV's, etc. the list goes on, just incase something happens to one of those ventures, i have something to fall back on. it's a crappy lesson to learn the hard way i will tell you that much!
      Anthony, I learned it almost 6 years ago, which is why I never worry about
      somebody coming around and knocking me off the mountaintop. I have so
      much stuff going on, it's a wonder I can keep track of it all.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322393].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author matthewd
    This is true most of the time... but there are people that can put out low quality stuff and slap a huge price tag on it and sell like crazy simply b/c of their marketing and who they are.

    Sometimes it doesn't matter how much better or worse your product is... but it usually does for us "Regular Joe's"
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322476].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Melody
    It's this way on EBay, too - hubby found his own unique suppliers- which were then located by other sellers on EBay. Bob did drop his prices for awhile (among other 'creative' ideas) but finally got to the point that it was too much time for too little money.

    Fortunately - like you - we have many different things going on. The internet is a very competitive and fast paced place to do business - if you live in the US - your cost of DOING BUSINESS is much different than if you lived in many other parts of the world - and a lot of the strongest competition is coming from those places.....so they can sell at a much lower price because their cost basis is so much lower.

    And by cost basis - I am not just talking about the production cost of the product - but rather the value we MUST put on our time.

    So - I am in total agreement about cutting your losses and switching to another track.

    You lose more in the long run by NOT recognizing when it's time to 'let go' - anyone here read Seth Godin's The Dip?

    A must read for every entrepreneur!
    Signature
    Our first "Digital Yard Sale"! A massive PLR Blowout Sale to help a friend pay medical expenses.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322509].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Daniel Deegan
      To prevent these types of situations you really need to evaluate and plan a solid positioning strategy for you and your product. With the right positioning it's much harder for the competition to crack your market,customer base and reputation.

      Also being the first on the block with a concept or idea gives you a big advantage assuming you incorporate that fact into your positioning strategy.
      Signature

      ****************************************
      Spy & Track Winning Facebook Ads

      Spy & Track
      Winning Google Content Network Ads
      Spy & Track Winning Bing & Google PPC Search Ads
      â„¢ACP - Click Here For Details
      ****************************************

      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322549].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author laurieslegends
    Boy are you so right.

    It is frustrating, for you when you just starting out with a good taste of success.

    Last spring, I was going awesome with sales on my review writer software.

    Then someone I had kindly offered a customized version too to give as a bonus, kept rerunning a wso with that product in it. Over and Over, even after I politely asked him to stop.

    Now it is sitting on one of those, sites that steals software and gives it away, and my sales have literally dried up.

    I have two lessons from that,

    1-- like you said, you need more than one successful product and income stream,

    2-- be careful which products you give resell rights to, especially if they are lucriative sellers for you.

    3-- I didn't build a forced way to make them register or subscribe to use that software and that was a big mistake on my part.

    Laurie

    We live and learn.

    Laurie
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322574].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author MaskedMarketer
      Originally Posted by Melody View Post

      It's this way on EBay, too - hubby found his own unique suppliers- which were then located by other sellers on EBay. Bob did drop his prices for awhile (among other 'creative' ideas) but finally got to the point that it was too much time for too little money.
      I'm not sure if you're referring to dropping price as creative?

      What's your USP and positioning like? What 'creative' ideas did you use?

      I don't know what type of business you're in, but its got to be built on a real firm foundation.

      I, like most, go to E-bay to find the cheapest prices on everything.

      Think of the market and type of competition you're already breeding just by being in that market

      And most people I see going into selling on ebay do it as a "biz op" as opposed to treating it like a real businesss.
      Signature

      "One Man's Ceiling is Another Man's Floor
      "


      "I Pay Less Attention to What Men Say. I Just Watch What They Do."
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322637].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author Melody
        Originally Posted by MaskedMarketer View Post

        I'm not sure if you're referring to dropping price as creative?

        What's your USP and positioning like? What 'creative' ideas did you use?

        I don't know what type of business you're in, but its got to be built on a real firm foundation.

        I, like most, go to E-bay to find the cheapest prices on everything.

        Think of the market and type of competition you're already breeding just by being in that market

        And most people I see going into selling on ebay do it as a "biz op" as opposed to treating it like a real businesss.
        No, dropping prices is NOT creative at all - and definitely not what I was referring to - we've been self-employed for more than 20 years, and obviously look at every aspect of what we do as 'business' not a 'biz op'.

        The point that I was trying to make - just as Steve was - is that there comes a point when you have to look at a particular niche you are in or aspect of your business, and make the decision to keep plowing ahead at a reduced profit or focus on another niche where the rewards vs time spent make more sense.

        We are still very active in certain EBay areas - but we are constantly looking at where we make the most money for the time invested, and that is where we spend our efforts.

        No one 'niche' that we are in accounts for more than about 15% of our combined rev streams.

        As to building a firm foundation - I spent almost 4 months away from my own business ventures last year due to a serious family issue - dad had a massive stroke and lives across the country from me - and my revenues actually increased by 15%!

        Now THAT's a firm foundation, wouldn't you say?

        Melody
        Signature
        Our first "Digital Yard Sale"! A massive PLR Blowout Sale to help a friend pay medical expenses.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322747].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author MaskedMarketer
          Originally Posted by Melody View Post

          No, dropping prices is NOT creative at all - and definitely not what I was referring to - we've been self-employed for more than 20 years, and obviously look at every aspect of what we do as 'business' not a 'biz op'.
          I know its not creative, which is why I was curious to what you were doing. And why I asked your USP and positioning, which plays a big role when you have competition.

          Originally Posted by Melody View Post

          The point that I was trying to make - just as Steve was - is that there comes a point when you have to look at a particular niche you are in or aspect of your business, and make the decision to keep plowing ahead at a reduced profit or focus on another niche where the rewards vs time spent make more sense.
          Thats right. And its different with each business and niche. I would stay in niches I know I can control. Competition is good, knowing how to evolve properly can be tricky, but thats what happening online. Evolution is speeding up!

          Originally Posted by Melody View Post

          We are still very active in certain EBay areas - but we are constantly looking at where we make the most money for the time invested, and that is where we spend our efforts.
          I know theres money to be made on Ebay, I just never got serious about it as I know why people go there. To get the cheapest stuff and thats not the market I want to sell to. I want to sell to emerging industries where the biggest market gap lies. Thats where you make the most money.

          Originally Posted by Melody View Post

          No one 'niche' that we are in accounts for more than about 15% of our combined rev streams.
          Have you noticed any other marketing avenues (other than ebay) where you can't handle the competition and may have to abort a business?

          Originally Posted by Melody View Post

          As to building a firm foundation - I spent almost 4 months away from my own business ventures last year due to a serious family issue - dad had a massive stroke and lives across the country from me - and my revenues actually increased by 15%!

          Now THAT's a firm foundation, wouldn't you say?
          As far as being stable, yes. But for growing and building momentum, takes even more work and planning, as you know.

          Theres a big difference in a business that makes a living and a business which brings in millions or tens of millions.

          The differences, that make the BIG difference, are actually small differences
          Signature

          "One Man's Ceiling is Another Man's Floor
          "


          "I Pay Less Attention to What Men Say. I Just Watch What They Do."
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322777].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Mike McBride
    Steven,

    After yesterday's http://www.warriorforum.com/main-int...-me-crook.html post, I thought sure it would be your wife gunning for you.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322642].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Stephen Dean
    Being first can help you retain market share. Copycats often just remind people of the product they were copying. You might have to come up with ways to stay innovative, but you do have an advantage copycats don't... being first.

    For an example of someone who's been completely undercut but still keeps market share... look at Microsoft Office. www: OpenOffice.org - The Free and Open Productivity Suite is free, has all the same programs and is compatible with microsoft docs... but Microsoft is still the leader.

    Stephen
    Signature
    Free Coaching WSO: How to finish all your 2013 "Goals" in JANUARY with my proven productivity secrets - taken from 9 years working as a freelance copywriter. Click Here

    Occupation: Best Copywriter Ever.
    Clients:
    Matt Bacak, Jim Edwards, Ryan Deiss and more.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322664].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author MaskedMarketer
      Originally Posted by Stephen Dean View Post

      Being first can help you retain market share. Copycats often just remind people of the product they were copying. You might have to come up with ways to stay innovative, but you do have an advantage copycats don't... being first.

      For an example of someone who's been completely undercut but still keeps market share... look at Microsoft Office. www: OpenOffice.org - The Free and Open Productivity Suite is free, has all the same programs and is compatible with microsoft docs... but Microsoft is still the leader.

      Stephen
      Because Microsoft understands business.

      They understand branding, usp's, positioning, marketing

      The average "IM" and Ebay seller and "biz op" has no idea

      ==================

      EDIT:

      Just because someone is the first means absolutely nothing.

      Its who's first in the mind of the consumer (marketing).

      If you ask people in the USA who created the light bulb, the average person would answer Thomas Edison (taught in schools).

      Thomas Edison wasn't the inventor of the light bulb, only the first in the mind of the consumer.

      Joseph Swan was the FIRST inventor. But wasn't the first to market it properly.

      Thomas Edison is credited with creating the light bulb (he didnt) and we don't even use his systems, we use Tesla now and most people have no clue who Tesla is.
      Signature

      "One Man's Ceiling is Another Man's Floor
      "


      "I Pay Less Attention to What Men Say. I Just Watch What They Do."
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322670].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Steven Carl Kelly
      Originally Posted by Stephen Dean View Post

      For an example of someone who's been completely undercut but still keeps market share... look at Microsoft Office. www: OpenOffice.org - The Free and Open Productivity Suite is free, has all the same programs and is compatible with microsoft docs... but Microsoft is still the leader.
      Actually, being free works against Open Office as compared to Microsoft. Many decision makers, especially in larger organizations, are under the impression that something which is "free" cannot possibly be as good or reliable as something that costs much more money.
      Signature
      Read this SURPRISING REPORT Before You Buy ANY WSO! Click Here
      FREE REPORT: Split Test Your Landing Pages the Easy Way
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[324429].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Louis Raven
    I actualy look to charge more than my competitors and for every flashy dollar graphic they use I'll show a solid testimonial from ordinary people just like you!

    I love the competition and never fail to dominate but if I do I'll just come up with another USP that will again blow the comp out of the water.

    You never need a different product, just a different market.

    A can of Coke can be sold for $600 in the desert

    Louis
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322674].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author eholmlund
    This is also a reason why you should be very secretive about new or innovative products before you launch them.

    It's also a compelling reason to use the "product launch formula" and go for a big initial launch in a short period of time (for example, one week). That way, you can make a good chunk of income before the copycats have a chance to cheapen your product.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322792].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author 14
    Banned
    Great post Steven thanks. The question is "how to" make others gunning you.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322808].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author angela99
    Originally Posted by Steven Wagenheim View Post

    I'll keep this generic and very short. But please learn a lesson from this. It
    is an important one.

    You come out with a product. It's great. It sells like crazy. Other marketers
    notice. They come out with a similar product but more advanced. More bells
    and whistles. And they sell it for less.

    You don't have to be a brain surgeon to know what's going to happen.

    You now have 3 choices.

    1. Make your product better, if it's economically feasible for the money.

    2. Cut your prices, if it's economically feasible.

    3. Cut your losses and move onto something else.

    This is the very reason that I never put all my eggs into one product. It's
    literal suicide.

    Imagine somebody comes out with something better than DLGuard and
    sells it for $25. Sam is going to have to do some major scrambling.

    Point is, you must always have a contingency plan...even if that plan is
    simply to have something else to fall back on.

    I could have 1/4 of my product lines wiped out by competition and still
    make 6 figures a year, though barely.

    When you have to worry that one person can come along and essentially
    put you out of business, you have serious problems.

    This may be the most important lesson you'll ever learn when creating
    products and services.
    Great post.

    This is why I'm always working on new sites and new products. :-)

    Walt Disney was once asked about his competition. He'd bring out a new product and he'd have copiers within a couple of months. His response was that he never worried about those who copied him, because: "I can create faster than they can steal."

    Copiers aren't a problem, as long as you keep developing, learning, and moving forward.

    Once you get into the mindset of "onward!" and enjoying yourself and what you can create (sites, blogs, products, sales campaigns for affiliate products) you're too busy to worry about others.

    Re cutting prices -- if you priced the product well, and it's great value for money, then rather than cutting the price, withdraw it from the market. Create a better product with more information based on the original, or use the product as a bonus for a completely new product which complements it.

    If you keep creating you never have to worry about what others are doing.

    What will YOU create today? :-)

    Cheers

    Angela
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322845].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Frank Donovan
      Steven,

      You may have a point regarding internet retailers (for example, those on eBay) who are forced to offer the same physical products as their competitors - for them, price may be the chief weapon.

      But you're an information publisher!!

      And this business is called Internet Marketing.

      With very few exceptions, people have been happily buying pretty much the same internet marketing products for at least the last ten years. These products have just been re-written, re-packaged and re-marketed.

      Case in point:

      You have (had?) a product called Affiliate Assassin which showed people how to be successful affiliate marketers.

      Now, I'm fairly sure that there have been other how-to-be-an-affiliate products before and since. But as far as I know, there's only one with your name on it.

      And it's unlikely that any of your legion of followers is going to be swayed by an email from Joe Newcomer offering his "Affiliate Killer" for $5 less.

      You made your product unique by investing it with your reputation and particular "take" on the subject.

      And next year or whenever, you could completely re-do that product, give it a different "spin" and sell bundles more.

      That's the marketing bit.

      As has been mentioned in this thread, a creative marketer need fear no competition.


      Best,


      Frank
      Signature
      TOP TIP: To browse the forum like a Pro, select "View Classic" from the drop-down menu under your user name.

      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[322948].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author Steven Wagenheim
        Originally Posted by Frank Donovan View Post

        Steven,

        You may have a point regarding internet retailers (for example, those on eBay) who are forced to offer the same physical products as their competitors - for them, price may be the chief weapon.

        But you're an information publisher!!

        And this business is called Internet Marketing.

        With very few exceptions, people have been happily buying pretty much the same internet marketing products for at least the last ten years. These products have just been re-written, re-packaged and re-marketed.

        Case in point:

        You have (had?) a product called Affiliate Assassin which showed people how to be successful affiliate marketers.

        Now, I'm fairly sure that there have been other how-to-be-an-affiliate products before and since. But as far as I know, there's only one with your name on it.

        And it's unlikely that any of your legion of followers is going to be swayed by an email from Joe Newcomer offering his "Affiliate Killer" for $5 less.

        You made your product unique by investing it with your reputation and particular "take" on the subject.

        And next year or whenever, you could completely re-do that product, give it a different "spin" and sell bundles more.

        That's the marketing bit.

        As has been mentioned in this thread, a creative marketer need fear no competition.


        Best,


        Frank

        Frank, you make some great points and in general, you're dead right.

        In some cases, however (can't be specific here) it's not feasible to fight
        the new product. This is especially true in areas where something was
        once done by hand and now it's automated. The hand process becomes
        obsolete. So the info on doing that hand process becomes obsolete.

        Now, could you think of a way to compliment the automated process
        with something? Probably, but will it be worth the time and money
        invested? All I'm saying is that sometimes products are just not worth
        hanging onto especially if they're low end and the amount of time and/or
        money you'll need to put into upgrading it isn't worth it.

        It's a judgment call that every home business owner has to make. That's
        why in my original thread, I gave 3 options.

        The one you choose has to be the one that you feel is best for you and
        your business.

        And that only comes from careful analysis.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[323075].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author davemiz
    bad thinking IMO.... its scarcity mindset.... and decisions based on fear (which are never good ones).

    if you can sell and have a good product it doesn't matter what others are doing....

    for ex. ebens dating stuff.... theres TONS of people in that market now, some with much better material than his.... even when he was just getting started.

    but he was able to sell and market much better than the others so guess what? he made much much more than anyone else and blew up.

    and there's tons more examples.
    Signature

    “Judge your success by what you had to give up in order to get it.”
    ― Dalai Lama XIV

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[324704].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Hardi Wijaya
    That's the reason why I wrote a report and posted in my blog.

    The answer is to keep your sales and marketing in stealth mode.


    Hardi
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[324717].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author MaskedMarketer
      Originally Posted by Frank Donovan View Post

      a creative marketer need fear no competition.
      Creative Marketers love competition, as I do

      Because they know that's where the money is and they can easily out do the "competition".

      Originally Posted by Steven Wagenheim View Post

      In some cases, however (can't be specific here) it's not feasible to fight
      the new product. This is especially true in areas where something was
      once done by hand and now it's automated. The hand process becomes
      obsolete. So the info on doing that hand process becomes obsolete.
      Steven,

      There are always ways to combat competition, but like you said, if its not worth the time and money investment, cut it loose.

      And if the process can be automated (effectively and successfully) then you can do the same?

      Its really all about evolution in this game and its happening real quick

      Always gotta be ATLEAST 3 steps ahead
      Signature

      "One Man's Ceiling is Another Man's Floor
      "


      "I Pay Less Attention to What Men Say. I Just Watch What They Do."
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[324811].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author imaddict
    Originally Posted by Steven Wagenheim View Post


    This is the very reason that I never put all my eggs into one product. It's
    literal suicide.
    Actually NOT putting your eggs in one basket is suicide and here's why...

    If you spread yourself "thin" with a bunch of front-end products over several niches, what you just described will eventually happen... to ALL of them by different people.

    But, if you have a strong sales funnel and backend system (something that 99% of online marketer's don't have) you don't have to worry about competitors ripping you off and undercutting you.

    Why?

    You can go NEGATIVE on the first sale and it won't matter if you have a high LCV.

    David D. was mentioned in this thread and he's a great example of what I'm talking about. He's built a pretty good sized company because his marketing is fantastic:

    $20 front end w/ a 7 day free trial - his offer is a no-brainer. He also pays 200% commissions to affiliates because he knows what his sale is worth in the long run.

    How many of his copy-cat competitors do that? NONE that I'm aware of. So people can keep coming into that niche all day long and it won't affect him in the least - because after they create their dating product their marketing ADD kicks in and they run off to do weight loss, make money online, and everything else you can think of.

    In the end, put all your eggs in one basket when it comes to your market but have a strong sales funnel. On the contrary, never put all your eggs in one basket when it comes to lead generation (i.e. traffic sources).
    Signature
    It's about time someone stepped up to the plate to tell it LIKE IT IS: MUST READ for ALL IMers
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[324801].message }}

Trending Topics