This is the fourth part in the series on how to overcome a saturated niche. You may read part one, two and three here.

If you’re fourth to market:

Within a few months, the Third Stage of Sophistication passes into a Fourth Stage—a new stage of elaboration and enlargement. But this time, the elaboration is concentrated on the mechanism, rather than on the promise—like this:


This Fourth Stage strategy can be summarized like this: If a competitor has just introduced a new mechanism to achieve the same claim as that performed by your product, and that new-mechanism announcement is producing sales, then you counter in this way. Simply elaborate or enlarge upon the successful mechanism. Make it easier, quicker, surer; allow it to solve more of the problem; overcome old limitations; promise extra benefits. You are beginning a stage of embellishment similar to the Second Stage of Sophistication described above. The same strategy will be effective here.

In summary, stage four is just like stage three, but by giving a reason that it’s a better way, tip, trick, invention. You can show this by removing doubt or any type of friction that a consumer could have.

The cold hard truth is that this stage isn’t sustainable. This stage will die quicker than probably all of the other stages. All of the new “inventions” are causing people to get tired of the claims. Once you have a winner in the fourth stage, you should be assuming the worst, that the fifth stage is coming soon. On the positive side, if you can master the fifth stage, you’ve probably outperformed your competition. It’s rare that much of your competition will even understand this fifth (and final) stage.

Part 5 (final stage): [Will be added soon]

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