Yesterday I was answering a question from a website developer trying
to figure out how to compete with a Google service. Their focus was on
how they could find and exploit weaknesses in the Google product and
use them to their advantage.
Whilst it is important to have a good product and try to beat your
competition on that front it is far better to win the marketing war.
Otherwise if your competitor suddenly fixes their faults and builds a
better product your competitive edge would be wiped out overnight.
Certainly Google has the developing power to fix any faults on its
products if they wanted to. Any useful features added by a competitor
could be added in a matter of weeks if they were deemed necessary.
Companies such as Google won the marketing war by attracting tech
savvy early adoptors. People who set up computers for parents, aunts,
friends and companies and added Google as the homepage are responsible
for Googles market dominance today.
To compete with Google you need to attract the same tech savvy
audience and give them a reason to trust and recommend your product.
Employ evangelists to blog about the key features and use social media
to build buzz. Make people love your product before they even use it
and you will gain loyal users.