The best way to take advantage of the new opportunities in social media, as a luxury real estate marketing professional, is to identify an uncontested market niche where you can run circles around your competition and even make your competition irrelevant. The sure way to fail, or get mediocre results at best, is to become a copy cat.
Microsoft is at it again. They are a company in search of a new identity in the new world of social media and cloud computing (software as a service via the internet, like Salesforce.com, vs. software located on your computer). Instead of breaking new ground by finding an uncontested market space they are settling for being a copy cat.
Right on the eve of the launch of their new operating system, Windows 7, which is supposed to be absolutely outstanding, they are copying Apple by opening two retail stores, one in Phoenix, Arizona and one in Mission Viejo, California. What are they thinking? Certainly they will be able to roll out new products in their stores and engage face-to-face with customers. However, this is just a case of becoming a “me-too” brand. Supposedly, they are going to have the equivalent of Apple’s Genius Bar. There is nothing new here.
Perhaps they can demonstrate huge computer screens that run Microsoft software. But, they are not the manufacturers of the screens or other devices that run MS software. If they carry the devices in their store they will be competing with other retailers in the same shopping centers.
When you think of an MP3 player, what is the first brand that comes to mind? If you are like the vast majority of people you will say iPod. Can you even think of another brand? Very few people can even think of the Zune, Microsoft's “me-too” brand because they own such a small slice of market share in MP3 players.
If market leadership is your quest, as a luxury real estate marketing professional, steer clear of being a me-too brand. Find a niche that your competitors are overlooking, one that you can be passionate about and dive in. Break new ground, don't be a copy cat.
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