Career Advice - A Community Blog

Erik Larson writes about the job market, resume improvement, and career advice

What Small Businesses Have That The Bigger Firms Don't

Written by Erik Larson, Community Blogger | Jan 17, 2018 11:51 AM

When you own or operate a small business, whether it's in the Harrisburg area or anywhere else in the world, you likely understand the challenges that present themselves to you. A company that is working on a smaller scale has inherent disadvantages in facing bigger competitors in the market. Obviously, the most significant of those is the discrepancy in the capital, as a smaller company can only reach so deep into their coffers before coming up empty, while big businesses don't have to worry about spending.

It can be frustrating in that respect for small business owners. But, if you count yourself in those ranks, you have to try and avoid getting caught up in the negative. There are many things that a small business has in its favor that a bigger competitor can't claim. The key for a small business owner is to identify these competitive advantages and really exploit them for all they're worth. In that way, you can even the playing field to some extent and perhaps move your business up the ranks to where it can enjoy the best of both worlds.

If you are just in the process of formulating your business, you need to make sure that you take care of all of the legal obligations to make it official. You also need to know where you, as a small business, can take advantage of areas where your bigger counterparts may struggle.

No Preconceived Notions

Many big firms have been in business for a long time, and they have established a brand that is pretty much set in stone. While that can obviously help in terms of customer identification, it also means that they can't stray too far from that foundation that they've built. As a small business, you don't have to worry as much about what people are expecting from you. You can strike out into novel areas that may fall outside where a more-established competitor might feel comfortable straying. This gives you opportunities to seize new customers.

Marketing Edge

As a small business, you might not have the money to take part in the traditional advertising avenues like television or print right away. But you can easily find ways to market your business online or through social media, where costs are minimal. Many established businesses have a hard time segueing into those marketing platforms, which is where younger customers tend to dwell. By contrast, you can, as a smaller business, make an impact with them.

Room to Grow

Many bigger businesses have likely advanced to a point where the best they can hope for is a kind of plateau in their business. When you start small, you're not far from the bottom and there isn't anywhere you can go but up. You should view that as a blessing and keep an optimistic outlook that some of the bigger players in the market might have lost long ago.

Again, the key is to concentrate on the positives of your situation as a small business. By doing that, you might find that you can achieve more than you ever dreamed.


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