How to Stop Cloning Unsuccessful Businesses

stand out“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.” ~ Mark Twain

What makes you different?

One thing that makes humans amazing is that there are not (and never have been) two people that are exactly alike. Try matching your fingerprints or dental impressions to anyone who has ever lived. It’s impossible!

You are absolutely unique. Your business is absolutely unique.

So, why is it that your business looks similar to every other business in your industry?

Shouldn’t you stand out from the crowd like a 7-foot tall 3rd grader? How would that help your business if you were that noticeable as a problem solver?

If you are making decisions in your business based on what “everyone else” is doing, it’s time to add greater value to your audience (and increase your income) by being a bit different.

It is true that there is “nothing new under the sun.” Even so, your ideal prospect will not recognize you as a problem solver if you don’t stick out like a sore thumb.

Here’s an example of what this looks like.

Initially, our company was a Virtual Marketing Assistance firm. As technicians who actually performed admin tasks, we got really good at Internet marketing and developing strategic plans that consistently made money. That was our hook – we never called ourselves “virtual assistants” (though, there is nothing wrong with that term). Instead, we focused on showing our clients how we could help them increase their income.

After a few years, we transitioned into a coaching and consulting firm. Our focus remained the same – helping our clients to eliminate overwhelm and increase their income.

Since most of our clients need help implementing the strategies we create for them, we brought back our “Done For You” services to help them focus on the work they love and increase their revenue.

Our “hook” is what helps us to stand out in a (very) crowded market place. We don’t just talk about marketing concepts and theories. We focus on simplicity, consistency and helping our clients take the right action to meet their goals.

That is how we stand out like a 7-foot tall 3rd grader.

Here’s how you can do the same:

  1. Improve – What are your competitors doing in your industry right now? Instead of copying their same ideas, their same methods and their same activity – improve upon it. What can you do to freshen up an activity?Example: We have a friend who is a chiropractor. She has been successful for several years in a city that is filled with chiropractors. What did she do to improve on her success? She invested in equipment that provides an elevated level of care for patients in a specific area. She figured out how to improve their health in a shorter period of time, with fewer visits and adjustments.
  2. Combine – When you focus on solving problems for your prospects and clients, do you think of how you can help them get the solutions that they need faster, better and/or in a less expensive way?Think about how you can combine two or more of your services or products to help your audience get better, faster results. Combine complementary offers and become a super problem solver.

    Example: At Smart Simple Marketing, we combine high value coaching with custom email newsletter support, blog content development or social media concierge services.

  3. Application – Technology can certainly make your life easier. But, there will never be a product that will force you to do the work that is necessary.One of the best ways to stand out in your industry like a 7-foot tall 3rd grader is to take consistent action. Learning is important. Doing is what gets results.

    Example: Look at the progress you have made in your business thus far. You have reached a level of success because of the work that you have completed. Now, keep taking action to stand out from your competition.

It is quite likely that you have never seen a 7-foot tall 3rd grader. But, if you happened upon one, you would never forget the experience.

Take that imagery and apply it to your business. Apply the three points mentioned above. Improve existing products and services in order to elevate what you have to offer. Combine the products and services that you have to create a better customer experience. Apply the things that you learn.

Those who take consistent action stick out like a sore thumb. If you find that you are following after the crowd, do what Mark Twain said, “pause and reflect” to see how you can stand out like a 7-foot tall 3rd grader.

Comments

  1. Hello Sydni,

    You are abolutely right. No two businesses or business owners are the same. I have been working with businesses over 30 years and my job was to either rescue them or increase their revenue. It was not as difficult as people say because I used my entrepreneurial thinking as well as the staff and I have been successful over the 30 years.

    I have prepared a very unique business manual based on my 30 years which you can see on my website http://www.thinkingassociation.com.au.

    Kind regards
    Ole Nielsen
    The Thinking Association of Australia

  2. Nice article, Sydni! Good points.
    May I piggyback on what you say and offer a couple more?
    — Turnkey. Offer the whole package. Working with you shouldn’t create extra work for your customers.
    — Human touch. Real people. Good personal service. Sense of community. People are sick of talking to robots and drones.
    — Access. Easy to find. Available
    — Scalable. Set things up so you can clone your OWN successful business.

    • Hi Mike,

      I certainly appreciate you thoughts and agree with those points. Human touch will forever be the key to long-lasting relationships, business and otherwise.

      What steps do you take Mike to make sure that you are accessible to your audience?

  3. Great article. That’s an especially good point in #2. Combine. Give people more value.