Have you ever held back in creating something because “there’s already someone else doing it?” 😭 This one is for you. I know exactly how it feels… You get a great idea for a digital product… do a little Google search… and BAM. Someone else is already selling what you want to sell. Chances are…. many people are already selling what you want to sell. So should you quit now? No. Read this post instead and you’ll learn how to stand out in a saturated market and win!
The good thing about saturated markets
Saturated markets are highly competitive. Saturated markets can feel overcrowded and leave customers feeling like they don’t know WHO to choose. Saturated markets lead to driving the value of your offer down thanks to newcomers undercutting prices.
Those are the bad things about a saturated market.
Those are just the bad things.
There is a really GOOD thing most entrepreneurs fail to see:
A saturated market means there are real customers willing and able to purchase.
The reason any market gets saturated with products is because companies see customers purchasing those products. Which means there are real people out in the real world who need and want those products and are willing to use real money to buy them.
When I decided to build my own line of website templates in 2017, the first thing I did was my research. I wasn’t the first to the Showit design market. Plenty of designers had been in the game for years and were already very successful.
The diverging paths of creating in a saturated market
🚫 Most people get it wrong right here. There’s two obvious diverging paths:
Path 1: Stop dead in your tracks and tell yourself all sorts of lies
Too many people selling for me to be successful….
I’ll never catch up since they’ve been doing it so long…
Why would anyone care since she’s a huge celeb and making boocoos of money already…
I’ll never forget when a past coach of mine said, “For every 1 million people that follow Jenna Kutcher, there’s 3 million other people who are looking for the same answers she gives from someone else.”
They weren’t talking smack, but rather pointing out that people do business with people they like, know, and trust. It’s natural for people to like some people and not really vibe with others.
So if you’re an Instagram boss and want to teach about Instagram just know youll have big competition BUT that doesn’t mean there isn’t room for you.
There are 3 million other people looking for another option.
Don’t go down the quitting path before you ever get started. There’s a market waiting for you!
Path 2: Emulate what’s already being done. (Hint: don’t do this one either!)
The easy path to take is to set up shop with products and offers that emulate what is already successfully selling.
Think back to 2013 when chevron pattern was EVERYWHERE. Everything from pillows to walls, rugs, websites, and tank tops flashed those zigs and zags with pride.
The problem with rooting your products in trends is that trends don’t last. What is selling now like hot cakes may not be selling so great in the future.
There’s trendy and then there’s also copying. Emulating what is already selling well can lead you down a path of copying whether intentionally or unintentionally and I don’t need to go too in-depth here. Copying a product that is already being sold is not going to work out well. They will find out.
But there’s a third path. One that crushes “someone else is doing it”:
Path 3: 👉 Find a gap in the market and fill it in only a way YOU can. 👈
Back in 2017 when I was researching the market to create my own line of Showit website templates, I saw a few glaring gaps:
- Showit was marketed solely to photographers, but there was no clear reason why (beyond the Showit team just picking a niche and going with it). I wasn’t a photographer and loved it. HUGE gap. Just think about the 1000’s of other creatives I could serve?!
- I appreciate a pretty fine-art brand, but…. I do color. 🌈 Most templates only catered to the trendy neutral-lovers at the time. Gap.
- Most templates focused on what your site could look like. At the time, talking about conversion wasn’t the popular thing. 🙋 But BTS I was reading Influence by Dr. Cialdini, studying sales psychology, and nerding out over conversion-focused design. Gap.
Instead of throwing in the towel because it had been done before or following suit and emulating… I filled the gap with products that stacked just right with my unique set of talents and approach to my work. 👊 The rest is history.
When you are researching the market to determine if you should create a product or not, the goal isn’t to find out what is selling and what isn’t, but rather to figure out how you can innovate.
There’s a framework called the “Jobs to be Done Theory” from a Harvard Business Review article written by Lance Bettencourt and Anthony Ulwick.
In essence, the theory says that people “hire” all products and services to get a job done.
A new homeowner hires a digital printable art piece to hand something beautiful on their walls.
A business owner hires digital swipe copy templates to convert email subscribers on their new product.
Obviously. But this theory is pivotal in helping you bring a product to the market that stands out from the pack.
It begs the question: How can I help my customer get the job done, better?
There are a few critical questions you need to research for your next digital product idea:
1. What “job” is your customer trying to get done? Start HERE when trying to come up with an idea for a digital product. What is your customer trying to accomplish that they are struggling with in relation to what you do?
2. How valuable is getting that job done for your customer? Are they willing to pay for that job? If so, how much? How eager are they to get the job done?
3. How many people are trying to get that job done? Is there a considerable market for this idea? Your mom and sister aren’t enough people to determine a real need!
4. How can you create a digital product that gets the job better than the alternatives they have now? This is where you land on your unique selling proposition or your competitive advantage.
Innovation is where profitable digital offers begin.
I wasn’t the first Showit template designer on the scene, but by finding the gaps in the market and filling them with my unique set of talents and strengths, my website template line has grown into a 6-figure revenue stream on its own.
Find a gap in the market and fill it in only a way YOU can. The competition won’t even matter anymore!
To help you dig deep enough to find a compelling gap so you don’t end up blending right in, I’ve got this FREE market research training + market gap workbook that walks you through the exact steps you should take when examining the market for profitable gaps.
This training comes straight from The Digital Lab’s lesson library and is a member fave! Consider it my gift to you as you take the first step in creating your unique and profitable digital product idea!
Get immediate access to play the free class when you take our quick 7 question quiz: What’s your Perfect Digital Product? It will help you figure out the perfect type of digital product for you to create based on how much time you have to devote in the short and long term, your business personality, and a few other fun questions. Once you’ve finished the quiz, you’ll get a detailed result page all about your perfect digital product and access to watch the free class!
So tell me: Where is the gap in YOUR market? What’s unique about you + your approach? 👉 Stack those you-factors together and fill the gap!