Ideadvance: Picture Your Competitive Advantage

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July 16, 2021 is the upcoming deadline for the annual Ideadvance Stage 1 applications. For this year’s PowerPoint style application, the use of images can be a powerful tool to communicate elements of your proposed business model.

One of the key evaluation metrics is your company’s competitive advantage. But, there is no one-size-fits all approach to communicating and illustrating your competitive strategy. An opportunity is to share how you might use Ideadvance funding and programing to vet competitive approaches. Be bold in your application and share your assumptions and approaches for working through your competitive business model.

Below are some high-level categories to help you consider competitive approaches. Be sure to google other ideas and find a communication style that fits your team:

Competitive Approaches:  

  • Comparative advantage: This approach suggests you can create a good or service more efficiently as compared with rivals. Perhaps you can serve more customers? Perhaps you require fewer resources? Perhaps you cost less (though this is our least preferred advantage). How might Ideadvance help you sort through a comparative advantage?
  • First mover advantage: This approach is as it sounds. With a strong team and connection to an ecosystem, you might be the first to get a foothold in the market. While you may be first, what will help you to create barriers for others entering the space?
  • IP/Technology advantage: This may be one of the well-considered approaches. Certainly, technology and IP are tangible advantages. But there are always risks for adopting and integrating new technologies. How can you reduce adoption risk if your primary competitive advantage is new technology?

Once you have considered one or more competitive approaches, identify a figure, table or other illustration to convey your competitive positioning in the market. There are several examples to google. Consider a search of some of the following images for inspiration:

  • Petal Diagrams competitive advantage
  • Competitive advantage tables
  • Positioning map competitive advantage
  • Perceptual map competitive advantage
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