I was thinking about the statement:
The Small Business Administration tells us that 80% of all small businesses will not make it more than 2 years, and by 5 years 90% will have gone out of business.
If that is the case, then why does every business out there try to be like the others? Most copy everything right down to the way everyone else in the same industry lays out their office.
The reasons I get from clients
Can we then assume that they are all wrong? Yes! At least 80% of them!
Finding How to Be Different Will Bring More Success Faster Than Trying to Be Like Everyone Else
For most companies there is someone just like you on literally every street corner in the world. Isn’t it a little hard to get noticed standing in a crowd that all look alike?
If you want to be noticed, don’t you have to look different, do something that would make you stand head and shoulders above that crowd?
I’m going to give you two points here that, if you decide to follow them, will make your business so visible that people are chasing you to buy from you instead of the other way around. It will make your business a magnet, pulling customers in.
Finding Your Unique Selling Proposition, That Thing that Makes you so visible above the crowd that they are chasing you
When I’m working with my executive business coaching clients I spend a significant amount of our time trying to find what would make my clients different. This one idea alone can make you super successful if you find your
powerful unique selling proposition.
Let’s start a worksheet on a piece of paper. On the far left create a column called Products/Features/Services, and list all of your products, your features, your services down that column. List each on their own line down the left side.
Next to that create a column, label it, “Benefits, What would a client get from buying my product or service. This is an answer to “Why buy my product (service).”
Don’t worry about perfection here. This is a thought process that will get better the more you think about it, and until you start writing down your thoughts it isn’t going to get better. So start now. This is a process. You’ll find that your early answers will be rather weak and wishy washy. You might not think so when you first write them down, but I’ll guarantee that the more you review this each time you’ll look back and realize how far off target you’ve been when talking about your product before, and probably still are in the early phases of what we are doing right now.
Make sure that, as you write the answers in each column to the right, that they line up with a product or service on the same line of the first column. So, answer the same question for each product or service.
The next column to the right is “Why buy it from me?” In other words, if someone has already decided to buy the product based on the benefit you just wrote in the 2nd column, and IF there really is someone just like me on every street corner, then give a reason why they should buy from you, or even better, why should you be noticed above that crowd on every street corner. A quick suggestion: Before you go where everyone else goes–your answer shouldn’t have anything to do with being less expensive. If you go there you’ll lose. Everybody else is already there. You’ll just be looking like everybody else anyway. Take your best shot at this, we’ll come back and get it better later.
Now, the last column:
o Take both the Why buy the product?
o And Why Buy it from me?
o And turn them into measurable results.
Finding the right measurable result is where you’ll find your opportunity to stand out above the crowd, where you’ll find a statement that will make your company a magnet to customers.
I want you to step back and really look at all of those answers. Did you answer all of the questions based on what benefit the customer really receives? Or was it still about the product/service, was it kind of iffy, wishy washy, weak?.
I’ll use one of my client’s businesses. He is a business coach as well. I coach the coaches, a business advisor to business advisors. His product is business coaching, training, sales training.
Now for the benefit a customer might receive: It’s almost too easy to say education, better skills, but that’s not digging deep enough.
Increased business, increased bottom line, easier to run business. In my opinion that is still a little weak. But let’s move on so that you get the idea. And I suggest you do the same. Get the ideas down at first. Then, after completing all of the other columns come back and look at it with the new ideas that will have been generated.
Why buy it from me?
It’s a little too easy to say that he gives them training, or does it at a better price than others. If he digs deep enough, he gives them results instead of training. Where most companies provide training for a day, he’ll ask the client what he wants and dig for that deeper answer, and then focus on delivering results, not just training. Still not where I want it. It’s still weak.
For the measurements:
Small business clients that act on the ideas they generate together double their business in 3-4 weeks, and he’ll guarantee a 2:1 ROI on his fee.
Now if I go back to Why buy it from me, and add, “giving results (and how much, make it measurable, do you double a business? A really good coach can.), and doing it in 3-4 weeks” instead of just some time we’re starting to reach that really powerful statement.
Using what you find in the measurable part in your marketing, in your elevator speech, you’ll find people noticing you for a change. You’ll start to see marketing results go up 5-10 times. When you use this in a networking event you’ll have the room coming over to find out more.
Most of my clients really balk when we start talking about “make it measurable.” They are usually afraid to have to commit to something. And many have never even thought about what kinds of results could be measured.
I’ll get answers like “How can I put a measurement on it? I have so many different products. They are so different I can’t give you ONE answer.” Or, gee I don’t feel comfortable committing that I can do that.
I’ll not let them get away with that. Pick an average, pick the best you’ve ever done, the worst you’ve ever done. This is a thought process. And then let’s put something down on paper that you are willing to commit to. Let’s write down something that says, “most of our clients will get this…..” “the typical client will get this….”, and “I will absolutely guarantee that a client will get this…”
At first, many of my clients will feel that they are having to commit to something they don’t want to commit to. Well, guess what? That’s what will make you different. Pay close attention. These are the KEYs to catapulting your business forward.
Everyone else is selling generic stuff on every street corner. Just make sure that your statement is true and deliverable.
Believe me it works. I have people running over to me after chamber introductions to hear more. Or sometimes to say, “You can’t really do that….can you?”
Back to my coaching client example: Sales went through the roof when he was willing to stand up and commit to doubling someone’s business, or doubling the output of some specific part of a business, if they, in turn, would just act on the ideas, and then guarantee a 2:1 ROI against the fee. That’s measurable. That’s a very visible, clear definition of results.
Measurable results in an elevator speech, ads, brochures, wherever your getting out there to be seen will become so powerful of a statement that your business will magnetically be pulling customers in faster than you could possibly imagine.