Living with the Competition: How Businesses Co-Exist

One of the challenges you have to deal with when you have your own business is the competition. Other businesses in your industry, large, small and on a par with your own are all competing in the same space for the same customers, and you have to find a way to live with this if you want to succeed in your sector.


Today we’re looking at some of the ways you can work with and around competitors to find your place in your niche.


Know the Competition


The first step is to learn who your competition really is. Which businesses are you competing with locally, nationally and internationally, which are beneath your notice and which do you need to be aware of?


If you’re a physical toyshop with a few locations in towns in the Northeast, another toyshop in Cornwall is operating in the same space conceptually but such a different one geographically they have no impact on you. Amazon, meanwhile, is unaware that you exist, but you definitely need a strategy that allows you to compete meaningfully with them.


Medium sized and even small businesses can benefit from competitor benchmarking services. This is a kind of market research that identifies your competitors and ranks them alongside you by set metrics. It shows you how your competitors are behaving over time, how they’re growing and changing and what their plans might be in the future.


If you’re looking for business consultants London hosts a spread of agencies at different scales to suit your budget which can help you plan your next steps.


Finding the Whitespace


One of the most important things you can do is find the whitespace in your market: the areas your competitors aren’t using, the audiences they aren’t targeting, the dates they’re not launching products and sales.


It’s a difficult tight-rope to walk. Trying to launch a new product the same day your competitor has their own, similar one coming out could be disastrous for you both. Finding your own space there is vital, with either a different kind of product or a different launch window, or both.


On the other hand, some concepts, date ranges and audiences go unused because they’re not relevant. Launching a new product for your winter clothing business in July will go without competition because it also goes without sales!


Market research and competitor analysis can help you identify safe spots to launch your products, low competition keywords to hang your marketing on and under-leveraged product concepts to develop, while keeping them all relevant to your audience.


Making Peace with Your Competitors


It’s well worth making peace with the idea of competition. It’s healthy after all, and pushes you to find new ideas and new successes. It’s also worth making contact and networking among the owners of competing businesses: no one else understands the challenges of your industry so well! It might become an important part of the way you support yourself as a business owner!

How Important is Hydration?

In wellness circles, there’s a lot of ink spilt, in print and virtually, on the virtues of hydration. Today we’re putting the problem in focus: just how important is hydration? And what happens when you get dehydrated?


What Does Your Body Do With All That Water?


There’s a reason hydration is always high up on the lists of ways to give yourself a wellness boost – your body uses the water for so many different things! It’s no wonder that dehydration symptoms, once they take hold, can be so unpleasant and so extensive!


For one thing, your body uses water as a kind of foundation and reinforcement. It cushions your brain and your spinal column, and even your individual cells are filled with water to ensure they’re the right size and density. One of the causes of the headache that accompanies a hangover is that alcohol dehydrates you and this can cause your brain cells to literally shrink!


Your body also uses water to process and remove waste – water is used to transport nutrients around your body to where they’re needed, as well toxins and other unwanted substances to your kidneys where they’re funneled to the bladder and passed in urine – also made of water.


Perhaps the most important thing your body does with water is keep you cool. As your core temperature rises, you sweat – using up water from your reserves, but cooling you as it evaporates on your skin, taking it with it some of the heat energy from your body.


Not Just Water


It’s important to remember that it’s not just water that you lose when you’re dehydrated, but all the compounds dissolved in that water. Some of these are as important as the water itself and they’re called electrolytes. These soluble salts are used for vital jobs around your body – helping to maintain fluid balance in your cells, transmitting impulses through your nerves to muscles and even helping to regulate your mood – a lot of the problems you encounter when you’re dehydrated actually stem from a dearth of electrolytes.


Healthy Rehydration


It’s clear, then, that staying hydrated is key to staying healthy, but there are better and worse ways to dehydrate. Lots of soft drinks come with a big helping of sugar, which has its own effect on your wellbeing. They might be tasty in moderation but if you’re trying to stay hydrated throughout the day they’re not a good option.


Tea and coffee are unhealthy (especially if served without milk and sugar), but they have a diuretic effect on your body – meaning they encourage it to shed water. Too much tea or coffee will have only a small overall hydrating effect!


Water is the best hydrator with the least drawbacks but there’s something you need to remember: it doesn’t naturally contain electrolytes. Make sure you top up both at the same time by using a rehydration product like a sachet or soluble tablet to ensure you’re functioning at your best.