How To Make Sure Your Business Stands Out From The Competition
Have you ever wondered what brings your business business? Is your offer unique in the marketplace? Sun and Co. Academy mentor Kay Fabella sat down with us to share things you must do to make sure your business reaches the right people and drive sales that matter.
What sets you and your business apart from your competition?
Once you’ve researched your competitors and evaluate what they offer, chances are you feel a bit intimidated. Or you’re looking to bigger names in your industry and looking for ways to emulate their success.
Let me stop you right there, friend.
First, you have a unique set of skills, experiences and talents to bring to the table that someone out there genuinely needs. You have something to offer that will make the right person choose you instead of someone else you may feel intimidated by right now.
Second, you shouldn’t be competing with big names in your industry. The research you’ve done on others should help you evaluate their offers to see how you can do things differently. Chances are if something has been done one way for a long period of time, your potential customers are looking for innovative ideas, unique perspectives and different ways of doing things. Which is where you come in!
And of course, the last thing you want to do is be a cheap copycat of someone else. It’s unethical, gross and, in most cases, highly illegal. Not to mention your customers are smarter than ever before and can smell a knockoff a mile away.
So what’s the secret to virtually eliminating the competition and finding what makes you unique in your marketplace? Infusing more you into your business!
Here are 5 ways to help you stand out in a sea of sameness and leverage your uniqueness in your business:
DISCOVER YOUR STRENGTHS
Go online and take a Meyers-Briggs test, an Enneagram test, or buy the Gallup Strengths Finder 2.0 book. Or you can discover your unique talents, abilities, and ways of thinking by talking with a trusted professional like a career coach or psychologist.
For example, if one of your strengths is positivity you can highlight that in your consulting style or brand voice. If one of your strengths is breaking down abstract concepts into easy-to-digest pieces for your clients, share that with them.
Knowing your strengths helps you feel more fulfilled, helps you determine what sets you apart from your competition, and allows you to show up in the best way possible in your business.
ASK FOR FEEDBACK FROM OTHERS
Struggling to answer Step 1? Ask your friends, colleagues and clients to help you out!
It’s as easy as emailing a “What are my three best qualities?” or putting together a Google Forms or Typeform survey asking them to list down what they admire about you anonymously. Then you’ll spend time going through the responses and looking for common patterns, words and phrases.
I know it may sound scary to ask, but you’ll be surprised how insightful (and fun!) this exercise ends up being.
ESTABLISH YOUR UNIQUE PERSPECTIVE
Almost everything is Google-able nowadays. But having a unique perspective, voice and approach is what your audience will resonate with… and pay for.
Try answering the following questions to help you establish your unique perspective and message:
What currently frustrates or pisses you off about your industry?
What inefficiencies or injustices have you seen that you’d like to fix?
How are you and your audience alike? What outlook on life do you share with them?
How do you serve your customers differently than your competition?
How would you change your industry for the better?
Remember, you don’t necessarily have to be negative to share your unique perspective. But standing for something will make the difference between whether or not your audience remembers you… and decides to buy from you.
CREATE MORE RELEVANT STORIES
When it comes to selling, facts tell, stories sell.
As you know, we human beings learn and remember from stories more than anything else. The same applies to your business and your potential customers. And from a strategic perspective, the stories you tell about your brand will help your potential customers connect with and remember you.
So another way to leverage your uniqueness is to tell more relevant stories. Stories that people can easily identify with, and stories that people can share and pass along for you. This establishes your brand, this helps you connect more emotionally with others, and it helps people spread the word about you and your business.
You’ve gotta remember that we human beings are emotional creatures. Stories showcase your humanity and they help people get to know, like and trust you.
The last 5 Story Lab clients who’ve hired me specifically chose to work with me because they resonated with my story as an expat/immigrant living in Madrid. They knew that I, like them, understood the struggle of building a business abroad. And they trusted me to understand their story and define their message because they knew I’d lived it, too.
SHARE MORE OF WHAT YOU LOVE
Another thing that will help you set yourself apart in your marketplace is by sharing what you love with your audience.
To this day, I get invitations to speak, participate in a summit or get on a call with a potential customer mentioning my (1) love of Lord of the Rings (2) Sriracha or (3) the fact I live in Madrid.
It’s an instant point of connection before I even meet them, and I know that they’ve helped clients choose me above other storytelling and messaging strategists.
So if you aren’t already, I’d like to invite you to share things you love in how you show up for your audience.
Write down at least 10 things you love: quirks, passions, hobbies, guilty pleasures, hidden talents, secret obsessions. Maybe you’re like me and love musicals, or Harry Potters. Perhaps you love cheese, animals, silent films or collecting vintage spoons.
I know these seem like tiny, insignificant things. But it’s the details that help you build a completely memorable brand, they help you build your culture. And that creates opportunities for you to bond with your customers.
So there you have it: 5 easy ways to find what makes you unique in your marketplace.
Of course, you have to make sure you do your research on what your competition or industry leaders are offering, and make sure that you can stand behind your product or service with integrity.
By tapping into what makes you unique, you don’t only stand out in your marketplace. Your message will resonate with and attract the audience you’re meant to serve.
Which of these 5 ways will you use to leverage your uniqueness in your marketplace? What would you add to this list?
If you want to learn more from Kay on how to use your story to grow you business and scale, join our business Academy this December 13-20 in Javea, Spain. You can find more information and apply here.
Kay Fabella is a storyteller, wordsmith and brand strategist, who helps pivoting entrepreneurs uplevel their business by upgrading their story. Her passion is helping business owners share their message to connect with more of the people they were meant to serve, to position themselves as the go-to expert in their space.
A Los Angeles native based in Madrid, Spain, she helps solopreneurs to Fortune 500 companies find, tell and share their stories to boost their brands and bottom lines.
Find out more on Kay here.