Change is Opportunity for Small Businesses

Everything is changing. Brand loyalty is becoming a relic of the past. Mass markets have all but disappeared. With the Internet, there are no boundaries and even small companies can stand toe-to-toe with their larger competitors. Most importantly, there are almost no secrets; anybody can track anything.

Looking at the recent past, premium goods and their no-frills counterparts were driving the market right through 2008. In 2009, as the economy weakened, low price started to rule. Middle market products (not the lowest price, not the highest quality), remain endangered species. Services are replacing products, and some buyers still would rather save time than money.

Large corporations no longer rule markets. Today, almost all of the new jobs in the U.S. are supplied by small businesses. Specifically, large businesses have laid off more workers than they have hired. Slow-moving giant corporations simply cannot keep pace with the changing and increasingly more difficult demands of today’s customers. What used to work is now too expensive. Rapid change is killing big business, whereas…

Change spawns opportunities for small businesses. Economic shifts can create opportunities for small business because it’s a buyer’s market. And buyers are impatient, opinionated, knowledgeable, and skeptical. What’s more, their wants and needs are constantly changing.

Change is one area where small businesses, more flexible and nimble than corporations, have an advantage. As we’ve learned from arguably the best business book of all time (Who Moved My Cheese by Spencer Johnson)… change is inevitable. Adapt. Always be looking for your cheese in different places.