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  1. remnant

    remnant Member

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    An entrepreneur comes up with a good income generating idea. Soon others take note and discreetly copy the business some investing large capital outlays. Soon, the market is crowded and the original entrepreneur has not broken even. Due to the high competition, market share diminishes and there is accumulation of deadstock. How should an entrepreneur beat the copycats competition?
     

  2. pwarbi

    pwarbi Member

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    I think as more and more people are deciding to open up businesses, I'm not sure that anybody can deny the fact that things are getting harder.

    One way to combat the copycat's though is to just try an make sure that what your doing is better than the competitions
     
  3. ReadmeByAmy

    ReadmeByAmy Member

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    In the business world you cannot really avoid this copycat entrepreneurship. The best thing that you can do is to show to your prospective clients or customers that the products or services you are offering is something that has quality, has credibility and the one that they can be satisfied. Even there are many competitions just do your best and you can survive your business.
     
  4. ruener79

    ruener79 Member

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    Maintaining quality and credibility I think are key to competing against copycat entrepreneurship. Keep remembering the very reason you started the biz, and don't be discouraged by the competition. If at all, one should be thankful as being copied is an indication that you have got something that is right and so a lot want to jump into your bandwagon. This is a very great opportunity to hone your entrepreneurial spirit, including that of the ability to take a bigger picture, being on one's toe and be very ADAPTABLE. The competition should serve as an incentive for you to look at your business in a way that will allow you to make changes here and there so you can continue to be on top.
     
  5. Corazon

    Corazon Member

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    This thread reminds me of the 1980s when some businesses became blockbusters. First was the porridge, the so called poor man's meal was promoted as a snack. It was a hit in the business district so porridge eateries mushroomed in Metro Manila. Another is the roasted chicken locally called lechon manok. Every nook and cranny had ambulant vendors with their roasting carts. But in a few years, only the strong remained standing. There are still porridge eateries but the copycats have closed shop. That's also the case with roasted chicken, only the big ones are remaining.

    I guess it is the long-term plan that would make the business stand out. Those copycats were obviously just riding with the trend so when the customers decreased in number, they were caught flat-footed with no contingent action.
     
  6. pwarbi

    pwarbi Member

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    It's obviously going to become harder and harder to come up with a genuinely unique business idea, and even when you do, it's not long after that you'll see that loads of others have copied your idea, or at least parts of it.

    For me being unique as never really concerned me, I'm more concerned with trying to be the best at what we do, no matter how many others do the same.
     
  7. jona

    jona Member

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    Maybe the real problem is easy is to replicate your idea or concept.

    A really god idea is maybe something so unique and innovative that you will be grated a patent or trademark to it, or perhaps what you are offering is something that only you can offer because you have some kind of trade secret that everybody else lacks.

    If you can't patent your idea and really have no particular skill set or technical expertise to separate yourself from the rest then expect somebody else to copy you, but if you played your cards right you will have a huge advantage by the simple fact that you came first, people see you as "the original", and, hopefully, a large chunk of the market should be yours by now.
     
  8. pwarbi

    pwarbi Member

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    There is a big difference between an original idea and one that's been copied but sometimes the copy is better than the idea it's been based on.

    When you come up with an idea, no matter how much you work to perfect it, there will always be certain flawas and that's where the copy site comes into its own. The copycat site will be able to limit those flaws and work on them more than you have been able to do.
     
  9. rz3300

    rz3300 Member

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    Well I think that the only way to really beat a copycat is to do just that, beat them. Show that you have a a better product and hopefully the market will decide and you will have more sales. That is how it should work, anyway, and if that happens might depend on a lot of other factors. It is certainly frustrating to be copied though, but like they say, it is the sincerest form of flattery.
     
  10. 111kg

    111kg Member

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    :) People often think that they understand why certain businesses they grow up, while others, who offer the same products of even better ones, seem to fail.

    The best way to get your head out is to offer real value to your customers. Help them buy/order the right products/services, offer them assistance and don't be greedy. You'll soon find out that your competitors don't meet the above criteria, therefore you should be fine, at least while you stay on track.
     
  11. pwarbi

    pwarbi Member

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    A willingness to change helps a lot aswell though, and if a business comes along that steals your idea and starts doing better than you, return the favour and do the same to them. Look at WHY they're doing better than you, and if you can make it work for you, then use it.

    Don't just stick to your original plan and carry on regardless, you've got to be willing to change and adapt, play them at their own game.
     
  12. blenly

    blenly Member

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    Possibly a way around this would be to deliver the same idea but to a new area. I say area both geographically and in terms of business. Or focus on a more specific subject within your field. But I do agree that it should never become a problem if you are the best at what you do, even if your price is higher.
     
  13. pwarbi

    pwarbi Member

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    Unfortunately these days your price is one of the biggest deal breakers though, and people are becoming less and less concerned with standard of service, or that they're even getting value for money, they just want as cheap as possible.

    I know that globally the economy isn't great and people are finding it harder and harder to manage so for now at least, I think that businesses just have to try and hang in there and stick to their principles in the hope that things change quickly.
     
  14. Goldstandard89

    Goldstandard89 Member

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    The best way to beat out the competition is to have the best product or service. Along with the original product or service, is to have great customer service, customer friendly stores, and website. As always, getting the best sale representives and try to make better offers than the competition.

    If you still can't break even as a business, it might be time to change the business plan. Part of being a great business now is based on the ability to adapt. Try finding a way to either take your company into a new direction. For example, if you have an online store that sells clothes and accessories. You could try focusing on brand names or luxury goods. Or you could focus on an individual item like shoes. Analyzed what your customers are buying from you and remove things that don't sell.
     
  15. pwarbi

    pwarbi Member

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    I think it makes good business sense to be constantly monitoring what the customer wants, and be adapting as the trends fluctuate.

    There's many ways and tools these days to help you manage your stock aswell as gage exactly what might be popular in the future so as long as you stay on the ball as far as that goes, at least you'll know that you'll be offering what the customers wants, it's just going to be a case then of making sure the other factors like price are competitive.
     
  16. Nancy

    Nancy Member

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    It can be tricky, but you must find the right customers! If others offer the same product or business, you have to stand out from the rest. There are still customers out there who are willing to pay for quality and service; something that is severely lacking in our current business world. If you can latch on to a few of these you will be well on your way to success. Find incentives for them to tell friends and family. Somehow targeting your advertising towards the customers looking for quality and service will also boost your business. Stand out from your competition and be something that customers are loyal to and want more of!!
     
  17. doodles67

    doodles67 Member

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    Unfortunately, there will always be copycats; however, they can be beaten. It depends upon customer loyalty, which can be built with great customer service. More importantly, there has to be a good measure of reinvention. You need to come up with a novel way of bringing customers to your door or to your website. This can be done by selling new product or through unique promotions.
     
  18. briannagodess

    briannagodess Member

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    Well, the first rule of thumb here is to keep quite about your business idea until you have implemented it. That way, no one can copy your idea before you've established your business. Don't tell anyone about it even your friends, because sometimes, they could cut you in the back and steal your idea. Be picky with the business partners you get and make sure they're trustworthy.

    Next, you would have to make sure everything is polished before you get your business up. From the promotion, advertising to the website design, make sure it's done and finished so that you can quickly establish your business. Make sure you have your own brand as well so people will be familiar with who you are and what product or service you're offering.

    Next, provide the highest quality service and products as much as possible. This way, your clients will keep coming back to you and won't dare look into other alternatives.

    Of course once the competition starts to come around, make sure to check them out. Make sure your price is just enough to compete with them. Don't be threatened with them because you started this and you already have a loyal following. Just make sure that they aren't surpassing your client numbers.

    Lastly, listen to customer feedbacks. It's a great way to be inert active with the customers and get their sides. They won't feel set aside this way.

    Good luck!
     
  19. CheckTheNumbers

    CheckTheNumbers Member

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    Nobody really "owns" a business idea, which is why the laws have to get enforced to make it that way. People copy other people all the time, and there are a million ways to make money right now as it is. As horrible as the global context for money is becoming, it's still better than any other time in history. Copycatting is just a universal strategy for human development
     
  20. bhu

    bhu Member

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    Outstanding topic! Also, fascinating answers from all corners. I agree with those who recommend quality products and services, superior customer service and adaptability are the way to go with this issue. I've experienced it myself in another business that I had to close. The competition came along, and despite quality service and customer service, I couldn't figure out how to adapt to an increasing number of copycats in my market. With writing it's easier, because my overhead is so low. The other business required a local occupational license, property tax on my equipment, state professional license, liability insurance, mandatory continuing education every year. Although it predated social media and iPhones, I did do my own free website and e-newsletters and was lucky enough to barter for my advertising the majority of the time. But once the majority of my client base had best friends and relatives in the business, it was pretty much over.
     

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