Sure, there are other people who do what you do. But for a certain, select group – maybe your family, maybe the people you meet face-to-face at networking events – you are the only choice. They want their suit tailored, or their kid’s birthday photographed, they come to you. You’re “their guy” (or gal), as in “I have a guy” (or gal). You’re the default choice.
You still need a marketing budget.
Because now you aren’t competing with providers in your industry. You’re competing with every industry. Your job isn’t to convince people your service is superior, it’s to convince them they need your service at all.
Like the birthday photographer who loses out to the birthday clown. Or the suit tailor whose clients start dressing casual, or wearing vests (which are “in” now, according to the guy who brings us pizza and news from the outside world). Your main job is to convince your core audience that your services are needed.
This is an important consideration, especially for providers of non-essential services like those mentioned above. If they can do without you, they probably will. It’s your job to convince them that they can’t.
Compete for share of mind. Not share of market.