Discovering Your Restoration Differentiator

There is a concern that your competitors will adapt and adjust their practices to copy the differentiator you have chosen to follow.

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I cannot help but notice eager restorers asking other restorers what their recipe for success was while scanning through social media, industry publications, and wandering at industry events. I saw us doing the same thing in the infancy of our restoration company. We noticed contractors in our area doing TPA work; suddenly, we explored TPAs. After seeing that other restorers posted about agent and plumber marketing, we quickly adopted similar strategies. This happens every day and causes an effect some people refer to as “the sea of sameness.” If you start looking at restoration websites and marketing materials, visit restoration companies, and look at their vans, everything starts to look pretty much the same.

Before you jump to conclusions, I’m not suggesting that industry uniformity is terrible. There are a lot of pros to “doing things the same way” as an industry, including a voice and purchasing power. However, we must realize that the primary role of any enterprise is to solve a problem and that differentiation is the key to competitive advantage. In addition to following what your competitors or other peers on the forums are doing, I challenge you to take a deeper look at what they aren’t doing. Suppose you can discover a process, tactic, or service offering that is unheard of within the industry and succeed with it. In that case, you will become the only company within your market competing in that fashion. 

There is a concern that your competitors will adapt and adjust their practices to copy the differentiator you have chosen to follow. However, being the “first” to implement the differentiator gives you the advantage of knowing the process much better, and you’ll have less competition than others.

Allow me to give you an example. B2B (business to business, i.e., insurance agent) inbound digital marketing is currently almost unheard of within the restoration industry. It’s safe to say that practically ALL restorers conduct some B2C paid digital marketing efforts. It’s no wonder that water damage keywords are in the top 3 most expensive keywords. If you are to implement B2C restoration marketing, you’re very likely to compete against ALL the contractors within your market. At least until you and your competitor read this article and decide to implement it. You’re competing against a handful of restorers in your market and have a critical differentiating factor instead competing against all. Your competitors will eventually notice what you’re doing and attempt to follow. However, you’re already way ahead of the game by that point. Besides, it will take decades for most competitors to implement these practices to saturation B2C paid digital marketing efforts.

While no one in the groups talks about ideas like B2B inbound digital marketing, these are the TRUE factors that can lead to the explosive growth of a restoration company. Finding these ideas is relatively simple once you’ve bought into the importance of differentiators. A few ways you can discover differentiators are:

  • Take a look outside the industry! We commonly use many tactics and systems in other sectors that haven’t been applied to the restoration industry. Take a look at other successful companies and see if one of their success drivers is different and how you can use it within your market! 

  • Read a lot of books! At Albi, our team is obsessed with books. We have a weekly book club meeting where we all meet and discuss what we’ve read and how we can implement the concepts from the books we’ve digested into our business. The key here is implementation! There’s no point in reading about a great idea and throwing it in the back of your memory without implementing it. 

I’d love to hear more about the differentiators you implement and how they affect your business! The restoration industry is a profitable industry with lots of growth potential. Finding a differentiator and building your restoration business around that is an excellent recipe for success and prosperity within your restoration market.