Profit vs. Market Share. You choose.

Today’s guest post is from Mark Sigal at O’Reilly, and speaks to your focus in your market.

Pay close attention to the comments about profit vs. market share.

I live in Verizon country. No AT&T here, at least not yet. All you hear and read is about how Android devices are outselling iPhone devices like crazy.

Read this for a different view of the same data.

You decide which is more important.

PS: Is it possible to lead a market by copying the current leader?

UPDATE: An alternative opinion or two.

How to tell your clients you don’t want their business

Here’s a good example of how financial institutions send that message.

Now, I wouldn’t expect any of you to do something this obvious to run off *good customers*, but I thought I’d plant the seed just in case.

Frozen by the bailout?

You might find it difficult to concentrate on improving your business with all the events going on in the financial world. After all, your primary bank might get purchased tomorrow, or your office building might get sold to someone in Costa Rica, then what do you do?

Probably nothing – at least nothing you can do about it. Meanwhile, another day got frittered away wringing your hands over stuff that you don’t have any control over. Did *that* help your business?

When stuff like this is going on, it’s always a good time to reassess your market, and be wide-eyed and inquisitive about markets that might not have been there 2 months ago. It’s also wise to consider how these things might impact your business.

What’s not good is to rub callouses on your hands worrying about it. Most of what happens to you is under your control. No, I don’t mean that you can make a phone call and impact global financial markets. On the other hand, maybe you can pick up the phone and call your Congressional rep’s office and make sure they know how you feel about the issue of the day.

But don’t be frozen by all the chaos, perceived or real. Times like these, no matter how you view them, are always full of opportunity. The biggest risk is often taken on by doing nothing.

If you’re in the business of marketing hamburgers, you might think that the financial problems going on don’t really impact you all that much, or that they’ll hurt you by making people less likely to eat out.

On the other hand…

  • You should be looking at properties to expand into when they flip over, or to switch to if that makes sense. Maybe they’re simply worth putting an option on.
  • You might be looking into ways to offer a budget night out for families.
  • You might be adding catering to your services, since people who ordinarily get to go home for dinner might be working overtime trying to keep their finances straight. Or trying to keep their business open, or chasing that great new opportunity they discovered.
  • You might be looking at ways to help families whose parents are working an extra shift or an extra job due to whatever difficulties they are facing. Meal delivery? Pickup? Think, then act.
  • You might be looking around for that next great new employee who got laid off from someplace else. As an example, one of my clients got 29 resumes for a recent administrative assistant opening. Many of the candidates were outstanding and the final 2 were really amazing.

I’m sure you can think of other angles to pursue, so don’t be frozen all the bailout talk. Take stock and assess your exposure, but keep your focus. Be observant of changes in your market and new markets that you can serve.

Not everyone will be doing that. You should be.