You Can’t Satisfy Everyone. Focus on Things Where You are the Best

As a small business owner, do you try to satisfy everybody or only the niche where you are the best?

I’ve had this question posed to me repeatedly, and I have decided to answer it in my way. In the end, it is not about satisfying everybody. It is about satisfying those people who are willing to pay for your products and services. You must be selective about your offer and focus on delivering value and convenience to your customers.

We all know that when we are being pulled in different directions, we can quickly get frustrated, stressed, or feel like we are spinning our wheels. But it doesn’t have to be this way. We can find a way to take control of our lives and focus on where we can make the most significant impact. Achieving business success requires concentrating your efforts on what you can control and eliminating everything else.

Think about satisfying the niche where you are the best. You are the best in one part of your market but average in another or weak in the rest of the market. If you want to have a successful business, you need to satisfy needs that you know how to satisfy better than everyone else.

As a small business owner, it is important that you are honest with yourself and understand that there will be times when you cannot satisfy all of your customers or clients. Can we really satisfy everybody or please everyone? This is an essential question that all of us need to ask and give the correct answer to.

I Don’t Know the Key to Success, But the Key to Failure is…

The market has different types of needs, different problems that need solutions, different types of customers, and different habits… Look at the quote below:

Bill Cosby

I don’t know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody.

~ Bill Cosby

Many businesses try to reach a wide variety of customers, but after all, they very quickly find themselves in frustration mode. 

When I talk with entrepreneurs, I can see that the logic behind pleasing and satisfying everybody is that if they satisfy more needs or solve a different type of problem, their market will be higher. Because of that, they think there is more probability of higher market share and there will be more probability of success.

Sometimes, this logic is the most important competitive advantage for some businesses. However, it’s different when it comes to small businesses, which have limited resources. You cannot allow dispersing your already very limited resources because there will be a huge probability of failure in some of the niches. This failure can quickly become fatal for your small business.

This is because you are not reaching your target audience. Or, you are reaching too many different target audiences. In such a way, you are spreading your resources to reach more customers that are not still ready to purchase your products and services. Or, your profitability in most of the niches is on a very low level. You’re spending money on ads, but they’re not getting the response you need.

How to Focus on the Most Important Things Without Satisfying Everyone

Before you start to satisfy everyone, ask yourself the following questions:

  • What are the most important things you do for your customers?
  • What are the 5 to 10 things that you do really well?
  • What would it be if you could only offer one service or product?
  • Do you have enough resources to please and satisfy everybody on the market?
  • Do you have the potential to solve too many different problems or to satisfy too many different needs?
  • Are your business or you as an entrepreneur knowledgeable enough about leading battles in various market niches?
  • Do you have a detailed plan to improve your areas of weakness?

1. What are the most important things you do for your customers?

If you want to respond to this question, you need to list everything you are doing for your customers.

Here are some questions that will help you to make this list:

  • Are you selling your products or service? Or, are you selling a whole new lifestyle with your products and services?
  • What target customers do you want to reach?
  • What you are doing to reach them, and what are you doing to convince them to purchase from you?
  • How much do you spend to reach them and convince them to purchase from you?

When you have the list of everything you are doing, start thinking about each specific point inside this list:

  • How does this thing impact my customers?
  • How many resources am I spending on doing this thing in the form of time and money?

Now, you will have something like this:

most important things you do for your customers

Now, you can see some strange trends. For example, thing number 7 has the highest impact on customers, and you spend only 4 hours and $5000, compared to thing number 10, where you have low impact, spending 8 hours and $7000. So, you spend more hours and more money on something that has a low impact on your customer.

2. What are the 5 to 10 things that you do really well?

Ask yourself what you’re doing really well, and then be honest about it. What do you know that no one else knows? What skills do you possess that others don’t? What do you do well that others don’t do as well? 

These are the things that set you apart from the competition. It’s always helpful to think about your business like a puzzle. One of the first steps to solving that puzzle is to break it down into small pieces. Think about all of the services or products you provide and what makes you different from others who provide those services or products. Then think about the unique benefits of what you offer, the specific ways you solve problems, the quality of your customer service, the ease of your ordering process, your unique value proposition, etc.

The key to becoming a better leader is to become more aware of your strengths and weaknesses. Once you’ve identified your strengths and weaknesses, you can develop skills or strategies to address each. This allows you to focus on areas of strength and minimize your shortcomings.

3. What would it be if you could only offer one service or product?

Most small businesses struggle with the idea of being all things to all people. However, there’s no need to compromise on quality when you’re trying to stand out. Instead, focus on the things that your competitors aren’t providing and put yourself in the position of having to explain why you’re better than them. This is especially true if your company offers a unique service or product.

4. Do you have enough resources to please and satisfy everybody on the market?

Satisfying everyone on the market will require additional resources from you and your small business. It doesn’t matter if these resources are financial resources, the time you need to spend, or intellectual resources. Simply, you will need to have them ready before you start.

So, think about the resource:

  • What will you need?
  • Do you have such resources in enough quantity?
You Can't Satisfy Everyone

2. Do you have the potential to solve too many different problems or to satisfy too many different needs?

The next important thing you need to consider is to focus on whether you have the full potential to please and satisfy everybody.

This is related to your competence. Do you have enough knowledge, skills, and experience to work on solutions that will satisfy all possible different customers for your small business? What about your own time? Do you have enough time to satisfy everybody?

3. Are your business or you as an entrepreneur knowledgeable enough about leading battles in various market niches?

If you decide to satisfy everybody, you must be present in different market niches. As I have already mentioned, different market niches have different needs, habits, behavior, etc.

So, are you ready to compete in such different markets?

Conclusion

Do not try to satisfy everybody. Focus on the niche where you are the best, target your customers, and satisfy them with the best solutions for their problems. If you succeed in this, you will look at how your business grows fast.

Dragan Sutevski

Posted by Dragan Sutevski

Dragan Sutevski is a founder and CEO of Sutevski Consulting, creating business excellence through innovative thinking. Get more from Dragan on Twitter. Contact Dragan