COMPETING with Other Santas…
Over the past few weeks, I’ve seen several Facebook posts about Santas competing with one another… Santas lowballing to get gigs, etc. The topic even came up during our sessions The Santa Claus Conservatory his week and again yesterday in a phone call with a Santa in the mid-west.
Here’s my take on it…
Peter Thiel, the billionaire co-founder of PayPal said, “All failed companies are the same: they failed to escape competition.”
ESCAPE THE COMPETITION…
I see competition as a double-edged sword. It causes us Santas to “raise our game” and that’s definitely a good thing… but if you fail to escape the competition you can find that competition sucks the fun and money out of portraying Santa.
The reason? If you don’t escape the competition you can find yourself in an ongoing battle of who can slightly out-do the other for cheaper and cheaper rates. It’s a race to the bottom for all parties involved.
Instead of trying to compete with other Santas, it’s better to escape the competition by doing something completely novel or to focus on a tightly defined niche.
Once you’ve established yourself as particular kind of Santa, a singing Santa, magician, storyteller, ‘Smart Santa’, etc. you can set your own terms — rather than reactively responding to the competition, you escape it.
I call this becoming ‘sought-after’.
When customers, or potential customers, want YOU… not just ‘a Santa’… but YOU SPECIFICALLY, that’s when things change. At that point, you are not competing with anyone.
Of course, many people will not hire you, many people will not want a ‘singing Santa’, or a ‘storyteller’, etc. that’s OK. And of course, there will be people who won’t want to pay a premium fee. That’s OK too.
I’m OK with not being the right Santa for everybody… What I want is to be the perfect Santa for some people, people who are looking for exactly what I love to deliver as Santa.
How about you? Can you distinguish yourself from other Santas in your area? Can you build a customer base who want exactly what YOU provide?
I believe that by developing a unique skill set, or persona, and implementing a little marketing you can stop competing with other Santas… and you can become sought after.
By doing that you can escape the competition and you can define success for yourself based on own own unique values and you can opt-out of the race for the bottom.
What do you think? Does this make sense to you or is it utter nonsense? LEAVE YOUR COMMENT BELOW