Correlation or Causation?
‘More players in a market’ is also a signal that the market is ‘maturing’ and that more customers are finally ready to buy (it may also mean that a herd of inexperienced founders and investors are chasing the same mirage).
You contributed to this situation by educating the customers.
You also educated your competitors. You showed them when the market was ready for your product category. These competitors also learned from your mistakes (features, pricing, messaging, etc.) with your early customers.
That’s why a fast follower market strategy can be very effective.