Call Your Competitors

Here is something you can do to make your company more competitive in about 10 minutes. Call your competitors and test their service.

An entrepreneur I met with recently  told me that his company regularly calls and emails its competitors to see how good they are. They measure objective things like how long it takes to get a human on the phone, how long it takes to get a product, how long it takes to get an email response, etc. These are all metrics the company tracks internally and can easily compare to how they’re doing.

They will also order products from the competitor to see what the experience is like — packaging, updates during the shipping process, product quality, etc. The company does this so they can see how they’re doing relative to the rest of their industry. If someone else is doing something better or cooler, the company can adapt accordingly and make changes. 

A lot of companies are in fiercely competitive industries. Some will buy a competitor’s product or service to try it out and see how it relates, but very few actually do that on a somewhat regular basis. They’ll do it once and forget about it. This results in a short term benefit, but no real long term benefit.

If your company isn’t doing this already, you should start. In the long run, it’ll save a lot of time and aggravation. Guessing how your competitors are doing is not nearly as valuable as having the actual data.

One Response to “Call Your Competitors”

  1. Randi Busse said:

    Jun 11, 09 at 8:18 pm

    It’s a great idea to call your competitors and see what kind of service they are providing.
    I’d like to piggy back on that and suggest that you call YOUR company and see what kind of service YOUR employees are providing to your prosective customers.
    You might be surprised (and disappointed) at what you hear.
    Providing outstanding service should be the goal of every employee in your business. It’s not just something that the customer service department does.