The ubiquity of newly opened Coworking spaces poses a new set of challenges to operators. With newly-opened spaces it’s hard to say what further changes are on the horizon. But no matter what the situation, the question of how to beat the competition is always going to be predominant.
Competition can come in many forms. It can come from new spaces, either independently owned, investor-backed, or a new addition to a popular chain of shared workspaces. Our recent guest blog gave the example of downtown Santa Monica, which has two WeWork locations within 0.4 miles of eachother yet each still at capacity with a waiting list.
In some cases you may not even be competing with a Coworking space, but rather other traditional offices and flexible workspaces who serve the same industries you do.
There are a few practices designed to make the most of your space and give you a competitive advantage. Here is how you can use them to gain leverage.
Make the Most of Your Location
Keep in mind that no Coworking spaces are created equally. There is no one-size-fits-all solution to getting the best results for your space. One of the best practices is to look within your area and find what you can work to your advantage. Here are some tips to consider:
Partner with your local Chamber of Commerce and/or Small Business Development Center. There are other similar groups such as organizations for employing veterans to consider as well.
Research what needs in the area your space can serve. If you live in a region where telecommuting and working from home is a popular option, treat that option as much of a competitor as another Coworking space.
Take advantage of the neighboring businesses and things to do within your area. This is most effective if your space is located within an urban walkable area. Try to pursue opportunities for promotions and partnerships. We also discussed the importance of marketing strategies in a recent blog.
At one of the breakout sessions at GCUC, Hub101 explained their strategy for partnering with a Starbucks down the street from their space. They gained members from Starbucks promoting how going to Hub101 was better than working at the coffee shop, and in turn, the space promoted members getting their morning coffee at that Starbucks.
Differentiate Yourself To Beat The Competition
It’s not just décor that’s going to set you apart these days. Coworking caters to an entirely new class of entrepreneurs, independent workers, and professionals seeking to work in a new more collaborative working environment. Use your creativity to inspire a new user experience and provide a different twist on your services.
Don’t just make your space a nice-looking office either. Host industry events, workshops, hackathons, and other ways to bring people to your space and network. By doing this you will position your space as a facility that attracts the top minds in the industry. This will create a positive impression on your prospects regarding the quality of members in your space.
By leveraging your location and differentiating yourself you can position your space ahead of your competitors by understanding the people in your workspace that come and go. By preemptively meeting the needs of your prospects, your leads will be more engaged to your space before they even walk in.
Workspace Management Platform
Even though the vast majority of shared spaces will use some sort of workspace management tools, choosing the best one for you as well as your members is essential in beating the competition. The right software will help you with three important aspects of operating your space, among many others. Cost reduction, office management, and lead generation.
CRM solutions for Coworking spaces include features like automated billing, business report generation, meeting space booking, email newsletter functionality and printer connectivity support that optimize office management. The easier this works for you and your members, the more you’ll stand out among competitors.
Reducing costs will help you improve amenities in your space, such as sound proof areas, high tech printing/scanning machines, conference rooms, etc. These are obvious tangible comparisons between spaces that a prospective member will look at.
For more information on how WUN and the Yardi Kube platform can help you create the best experience for your members and beat the competition, check out the link below.