Talkin' Paint Podcast | Season 2 Episode #16 - Overcoming The Obsession With Competition

Talkin Paint Podcast Season 2 Episode #16 – Show Notes

In this episode of the Talkin’ Paint podcast, host Gabe Fletcher talks about the counterproductive habit of obsessing over competition in the detailing and paint protection industry. He emphasizes the importance of self-reflection, improving customer experience, and prioritizing internal growth over comparison with competitors. He illustrates the harmful effects of price undercutting and the necessity to value one’s work appropriately. With a real-life example, Gabe demonstrates how shifting focus inward and reframing views on competition can lead to significant year-over-year growth.

About Detailing Growth

My name is Gabe Fletcher. I operate Ceramic Pro Pottstown aka Total Detailing in Pottstown, PA. I have been one of the fastest-growing Ceramic Pro installers across the US. I have a 20-year website development background. I built my first website when I was 11 and have been enamored by Website Development ever since.

Detailing Growth’s Detailing 3.0 is a program designed for detailers. I took my years of website, SEO, PPC and totally crushed our market. It was my proof of concept that I knew we could do it for other people.

Our company was started to help car detailing businesses scale by providing SEO services, web design, social media campaigns, training, and more! We offer many different packages that are tailored for each business’s requirements. There is no cookie-cutter solution.

Episode timeline

00:12 Introduction and Welcome

01:00 About the Host and the Podcast

01:32 Sponsors and Affiliations

02:32 The Pitfall of Obsession with Competition

03:17 Personal Experience with Competition Obsession

04:03 The Detrimental Effects of Competition Obsession

04:30 The Illusion of Competition

05:34 The Dangers of Undercutting Prices

10:24 The Power of Self Reflection

13:25 Case Study: A Client’s Transformation

15:21 Conclusion and Call to Action

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Episode transcript:

[00:00:00] Gabe: Hey everybody. It’s Gabe. Welcome back to the Talking Paint podcast. We are in season two of the Talking Paint podcast. Supporting the detailing and paint protection films, ceramic coating, and window tint industry.

Gabe: The Talkin’ paint podcast is here to help you become a better version of yourself and by proxy help your business. What we do on the Talkin’ paint podcast is help you do some deeper digging on yourself. To help you understand why you are the way you are and to help grow your business by giving you actionable information.

Gabe: Please visit That’s to check out some of our previous episodes, show notes, sponsor

[00:01:00] Gabe: information. My name is Gabe Fletcher. And as always, I am your show host. I operate Ceramic Pro Pottstown. We’re an elite dealer shop here in Pottstown, Pennsylvania. We’ve seen massive success on the ceramic pro elite dealer program. Annually we generate roughly 1. 5 million in gross revenue sales. Doing coatings, tint, and PPF.

Gabe: For more information about what we do as a shop, you can visit That’s

Gabe: I’m also the founder of Detailing Growth. The automotive protection industries only big three full stack marketing program and solutions provider that provides you with a system of tools and programs to help support your business grow in both revenue and to break free of the chaos. We cover everything that you need to succeed in this industry. Web design, SEO, automation, systems, implementation

[00:02:00] Gabe: SOP, discovery, consulting, business support systems, everything. So if you need help with your business, visit us at

Gabe: This show is sponsored by Detailing Growth.

Gabe: SASpod, that’s If you’re considering starting a podcast and you wanna distribute it on every major platform, have an embeddable player along with easy episode management and deployment tools.

Gabe: You want SASpod. So check them out at SASPOD.COM

Gabe: so, today I’m going to talk about something that each and every one of us has done. And it holds us back all in different ways. Clouds our vision. And it’s definitely rooted deeper than we think.

Gabe: That topic for today is obsession with competition. You’ve been there. Watching every move your, quote, competitors, unquote, make.
Gabe: Thinking that’s the game. And you may not understand it now, but this is a growth
[00:03:00] Gabe: trap. A trap that’s usually rooted in something deeper. Traumas or insecurities. Maybe it’s the fear of being left behind. Maybe it is what it is for most alpha ego driven operators in this sector. That’s the urge to be the best without actually being your best. I’ll share a piece of my journey. There was a time when I spent more hours in a day stalking competitors than improving my own business. And. It got me nowhere, absolutely nowhere. And worse, it was a reflection of my own fears, fear of not being good enough.

Gabe: Fear of someone else doing better than me, doing more than me. And it was, it was all about me and not in a good way. And it’s a harsh truth, but I had to ask myself, is my obsession with my competition, just a way to feed my broken ego. Am I really focused on my core business values?

Gabe: Or am I just interested in what someone else is doing because it’s easier to focus on them than it is to focus

[00:04:00] Gabe: on me? And this is the straight cut, no bullshit truth. It distracts you from what really matters. And that’s your own growth, your own client experience, and most importantly, yourself. Every minute you spend obsessing over other businesses in your market is lost on improving and moving the needle forward for you.

Gabe: You have to shift that focus. It’s not about them. It’s about you, your business, your growth. So let’s talk about how we can start to make it work for us.

Gabe: Competition is an illusion. You think watching your quote unquote rivals is gonna give you an edge? That’s an absolute crock of horseshit. Listen, I’m not telling you it’s not okay to check in and understand what your competitors are doing and notice it. And see it. And how they approach the market.

Gabe: But to sit and compare yourself and obsess is the biggest waste of energy that you will ever have. Because what are you taking away from [00:05:00] yourself every time you give yourself and the energy that you have to them?

Gabe: What are you really gaining? Is it temporary satisfaction? Is it? fleeting sense of superiority,

Gabe: or maybe it’s that sinking feeling of, I need to catch up, which is usually what it’s centered around.

Gabe: While you’re busy playing this game Your own business is slipping through your fingers. Quality control, customer relationships, innovation, All takes a backseat while you’re distracted with someone else’s BS. It drives me fucking insane.

Gabe: I lose it every time I have to go over this with somebody.
Gabe: And then what this usually evolves into is the, I can’t sell it for X because Y is selling it for Z.

Gabe: I seeth with rage when I hear this. My actual eye starts to twitch. Your competition dropping prices and what do you do? You join the race to the bottom.

Gabe: Let me yell it out for you for those in the back.

Gabe: You’re fucking losing.Your

[00:06:00] Gabe: value isn’t defined by how competitive you get on price. The value is defined by the quality of your work And the type of client experience that you bring to those in your business. And if you actually put time and effort into the other areas and other values of your business, you can charge what you need to charge.

Gabe: Even when you are in the middle of a highly competitive, so to speak. Saturated market. You can stand out on top.

Gabe: This doesn’t happen overnight, but if you take the time to put the energy in and actually pursue it, making yourself the expert, delivering on client experience, making sure that experience is absolutely top tier.

Gabe: Using the right tools, the right way, creating guides, using video, truly becoming a tier one provider for the services in your area. The speed at which you will scale into that tier one experience price point

[00:07:00] Gabe: will be much faster than if you just tried to creep up without all the support tools. And I just, I assure that you giving any of your energy

Gabe: assure you that giving any of your energy beyond a look at social media to a competitor and saying, Oh, wow, they’re doing that. That’s an interesting take. Anything beyond that is just a waste of time and energy. And I for one absolutely loathe wasting time. So, focus what on you can control and what you can improve.

Gabe: That’s where your energy needs to go.

Gabe: And truly, you have to redefine what competition really means in your world. Because what you’re doing right now, it’s not competing. All this is, is self sabotage.

Gabe: You’re in this bubble. You’re playing this game. You’re not playing anything. You’re playing yourself. Played by your own insecurities and misguided focus.

Gabe: Guys get puffed up about who’s using what product, who’s charging what like a bunch of school
[00:08:00] Gabe: kids fighting over who has the better lunch box or whatever the hell else they argue about these days. I don’t even know anymore. Tablets, phones, it’s pathetic. You’re running a business.

Gabe: This isn’t some backyard. I’m going to fight your friends because my friends are better type of BS. It all becomes so much to a point where eventually you just stop moving your business and you just become infected by this.

Gabe: And then just to touch back on the undercutting prices, that’s financial suicide as well. I should have touched on this before. You’re just racing to the bottom. Not only are you devaluing the service, but you’re devaluing the entire industry when you race to the bottom. You should honestly really be ashamed of yourself because it shows lack of respect for yourself, for your own work and your entire team.

Gabe: Whenever I see these guys talking about doing work for this amount, it, it just as somebody who has the ability to help shape and mold the

[00:09:00] Gabe: industry through the content that I put out there, when I see these guys talking about what they do these jobs for, I want to fucking Sparta kick them into a pit filled with goddamn vipers.

Gabe: Whatever’s in that pit, I’m going to buy them from Billy Baugus over at American Detail Garage because he’s the nope rope expert.

Gabe: If you really want to compete, And you really want to bring it to these other people and other businesses, then you need to focus on being a leader. It’s striving to be the best version of yourself. Striving to make sure you’re making the right choices for yourself, for your team, for your business, for your family, for your future.

Gabe: And You don’t provide the abundance of energy to those things that matter. You will absolutely be closing those doors growth in this industry comes from innovation, excellence in service, putting in systems and creating an unforgettable customer experience. Not this small minded, petty

[00:10:00] Gabe: horseshit that you’re wrapped up in. Now, I’m going to touch on something you may not want to hear, and this might be hard for some of you, but stop what you’re doing, because I know a lot of you listen to the podcast while you’re working. I want you to stop what you’re doing. Wipe the coating off, squeegee the film, put the heat gun down, just, I need you to take a moment.

Gabe: And I need you to think about this concept. It’s time to look in the mirror.

Gabe: The power of self reflection is unmatched. When was the last time that you evaluated your business? And I mean really evaluated. When was the last time you really took it apart? In terms of how you stack up against Joe Bob’s wash shack down the street.

Gabe: How does your business stand on its merits? Are you evolving? Or are you just spinning the wheels and just stuck in the mud? You’re not really doing anything with it. Are you putting yourself in a place to make the right choices? Are you investing in your own mental wellbeing? Are you putting your right mindset

[00:11:00] Gabe: forward every day? Or are you investing in all the wrong things? Because if your energy isn’t narrowly focused and isn’t dialing out distractions, how are you going to be able to do anything productive? So we take a step back and we need to allow ourselves to feel how we feel.

Gabe: Let’s take a second and just be honest with ourselves and say, I’m feeling full of anxiety, or I’m feeling depressed, or I’m feeling not in control, because until you have that honest conversation with yourself about how you’re feeling and digging deeper on why, And when you say, I’m depressed because the business isn’t where I want it to be.

Gabe: Okay, but let’s dig deeper than that. What’s wrong with where the business is right now? Why is that depressing you considering how much time and effort that you’ve put in to get here?

Gabe: What is it about future growth that’s really got you in

[00:12:00] Gabe: such a negative moment that You feel like you’re not worth it. Now, for some of this, you may have to go to therapy. That’s not what today is for.

Gabe: But let’s practice a little bit of honoring how we feel and really digging and trying to understand why we’re feeling the way that we feel.

Gabe: Let’s talk about how we shape the future of our lives. how we should be feeling. Are we updating our skills? Are we exploring new techniques? Are we just coasting along? Coasting and boasting about being better than the next guy. Because that’s not progress. That’s stagnation that’s wrapped in an ego that will choke you.

Gabe: Self reflection is tough. And sometimes it’s easy to deflect and maybe admit that you’re not the problem. It’s easy to do that. But I need you to really just take a moment and look at it and take ownership of it. Because 99 percent of the time, you are the problem. You’re the problem that your business isn’t growing.

Gabe: Because you’re too busy looking

[00:13:00] Gabe: over your shoulder instead of looking ahead. Time only takes one direction and that’s forward. So the only direction you should be looking really is forward.
Gabe: Ourselves the hard questions. How can I improve my customer experience? What value can I introduce? How can I make my place the go to place in town? What else can I be doing out here to change the trajectory of the business for me?

Gabe: I’m going to talk about a client that I have in Texas. They struggled for a really long time and were spread too thin and weren’t really focusing on what matters. They were looking to a lot of outside problems.

Gabe: And one day I had a conversation with them. I said, can we just stop staring at the competitors? Let’s make some changes internally and worry about us, because I saw it happening. They were wanting us to duplicate and copy everything that their competitor was doing. Anytime that they did that, just did not produce results.

Gabe: They were just another clone in

[00:14:00] Gabe: the sea of sameness. After a really hard talk, after I sat them down, I was able to help them focus in words, and. They revamped everything. They revamped their customer service, started focusing on positioning themselves, and started really engaging with their community.

Gabe: They stopped playing the follow the leader and became the leader. This year, when I compare how much money they generated in 2022, this year, they’re up by 130 percent gross rev year over year. And that’s what can happen when you stop obsessing over what everybody else is doing and start focusing on your game.

Gabe: Your road to success is not paved by looking at what everybody else is doing. It’s carved out by what you do, your decisions.

Gabe: Remember that the shop down the street isn’t really your competitor. It’s you. You’re your own competitor because you’re constantly fighting against yourself

[00:15:00] Gabe: Your own potential. Are you living up to it? You push in the boundaries. Setting new standards. Making customers rant and rave about your service.

Gabe: Or, again, are we just existing? Because I’ve been there, just like, in the trenches. And let me tell you that it is a road to nowhere. And the moment that I shifted my focus inward, everything changed. My business had transformed.

Gabe: All right guys, well, hopefully today’s episode was helpful for you and you were able to take away some actionable insight. Please leave us a five star rating here on Apple Podcasts or Spotify or whatever other system that you’re looking at. It helps us grow and it helps us help more people. And I would really love to hear from you.
Gabe: If you can head over to talkinpaint. com, you can send us a message about the episode. I’d love to hear from you. I’m going to put a link down in the description of the podcast and the show notes on the website. So you can reach out to me.

Gabe: If you are a business that wants some

[00:16:00] Gabe: help and you’re willing to lay it out on the table. I would love to hear from you. And so would the rest of our listener base, because we would love the opportunity to hear about your struggles and hear about what’s going wrong and try and figure out how we can help you. If you’re a business that just needs some help, please reach out. If you’re a manufacturer of products in our sector, we’d love to talk to you, have you on the podcast.
Gabe: And if you’re a distributor of products inside of our industry, we’d also love to speak with you. Distributors have a ton of insight. They get to work with tons of different businesses. So hopefully everybody is geared up and ready for the comeback in 2024, the holiday season in. 2023 was really rough for a lot of people and I’m excited to give back at it and just really put ourselves and put the industry in a better place here in 2024.
Gabe: So thank you for

[00:17:00] Gabe: listening. I appreciate you guys being here. Make sure you follow Detailing Growth on socials, jump over to the website at, check out some of the stuff we have on there, and we’ll see you next time.

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