Author and consultant Jaynie L. Smith asks this question. Businesses must differentiate between “unique competitive advantages” and strengths. While strengths are important they are not differentiators. You need strengths just to stay in business.
Most businesses tout advantages, when they’re really standard strengths and most likely clichés. One of the best examples of a worn-out cliché is “we exceed your expectations”. Every time I hear that claim I cringe. Doesn’t everyone do that now?
A timely and classic Warren Buffett quote is: “It’s only when the tide goes out that you learn who’s been swimming naked.” At Christopherson Andavo Travel we have built our business by doing things unique and better. This is the only way you are able to succeed in a highly competitive marketplace. Most of our competitors who thought they had “strengths” are either gone or they are much smaller than they were during the good times.
We have built our unique competitive advantage by differentiating the three legs of the TMC “value proposition stool”:
1. Our agents
2. Our account managers
3. Our proprietary technology
We focus intently upon creating unique competitive advantages in all three areas. This is the only way you can grow your business during difficult economic times, or as Warren Buffet says “when the tide goes out.”