Spend a few minutes on social media these days and it's easy to quickly become discouraged. There's so many businesses vying for attention that it can make even the best of us wonder...
"What's the point?"
"Will I ever be able to make it with all this competition?
Your discouragement is valid.
In 2018, women alone launched between 849 - 1143 new businesses every single day!
While, in one sense, this is great because it means that more people are following their dreams. In another sense, it makes us have to work harder and harder to stand out and capture our ideal clients' attention because it keeps getting noisier and noisier in the online space.
Here are a few more stats from 2018:
That's some pretty fierce competition!
...Or is it? Ready for the good news?
The good news is that most of these numbers are just noise.
The majority of business owners haven’t invested the time and financial resources required to get clear about what they stand for, the results they deliver, the experience they want to create, the messages they want to share, or how they want to show up as the face of their brands.
This gives you an advantage! If you're one of the few who's willing to do what it takes to stand out, your brand will go far!
Well, the first step is establishing a strong brand identity. You know I couldn't talk about standing out without mentioning branding first, right 😜?
But in all seriousness, your brand plays the MOST important role in you standing out from the crowd so I've gotta mention it.
Ideally, establishing a strong brand involves working with a brand strategist to help you clarify who you are and what you stand for and then communicating that through authentic, clear and desirable messaging, offerings and visuals.
If you'd like to explore working with a brand strategist, first check out my post "How to Know if Investing in Your Brand is Smart Decision" and if you decide you're ready, reach out to me and we'll discuss how working together can take your business to the next level.
And, while it doesn't replace branding, if you're ready to jumpstart the "standing out" process, like YESTERDAY, here are 9 places you can look to discover what makes you different and desirable to the right clients right away.
9 Ways to Standout When Everyone Looks the Same
1. You have a unique approach
For example. I'm a psychology-driven brand strategist. I use my education in Psychology, Communications and Marketing to create brand identities that align with my clients' authentic personalities so they can show up in their truth and attract the right people.
This makes me different than hiring a graphic designer. Working with me is a much more holistic process than designing a logo and choosing a pretty color palette (although we do that too!).
Now it's your turn. How might your approach be unique?
2. You take your work to a deeper level
For example, my programs are very comprehensive. Especially if you hire me for my Ignite Your Website! Program. We'll start with establishing your brand identity (because you can't build a website without a brand!), then we'll write your website copy, create your signature program, set up your backend systems, create your lead magnet, write your nurture sequence emails, and more!
All of this takes my work to a much deeper level than hiring a website designer who simply builds a 5-page site and sends you off on your own.
What about you - do you take your work to a deeper level than others who offer similar services?
3. Unique Understanding of your ideal client’s needs
For example, I specialize in working with entrepreneurs who are the face of their brand. In other words, I help create "personal brands" rather than specializing in branding "products".
I have a unique understanding of this type of brand because that's the kind of business I have! I've been in business as a personal brand for over 10 years, and I understand the unique requirements and challenges that come along with it.
Take a moment now to consider if you have a unique understanding of your clients' needs?
4. Signature Program
You have a signature program that's different than what anyone else offers. It's different because you created it! Your signature program is kind of like writing a book. It's your baby.
Once you have your own signature program you can start to become known for and sought after for this unique body of work.
Do you have a signature program? If not, it's definitely something to consider adding to your business - it's an instant differentiator!
5. Personal Story
Maybe you have a personal story that is exceptionally memorable and transformative. For example, you lost 200 pounds and now you teach people all over the world how lose weight and thrive.
But here's the deal with stories: we all have them and we all need to share them; whether they're crazy transformative stories or not. Stories create the connection our audience needs to take that next step with us.
But if you do have a crazy transformative story (that's related to your brand), sharing it is EXTRA important because it will make you instantly memorable!
Do have a story you could share that would make you unforgettable?
6. You teach/train/guide in an area your competitors overlook
My Functional Medicine Doctor, Karen Hufnagl, helped me immensely over the past couple years with PMS and hormonal imbalances that wreaked havoc on my life for YEARS.
Before I found her, I tried many different approaches to try to find relief, with little success.
The thing that set Karen apart was the intensive and in-depth testing. Through lab testing, she found exactly what was going on in my body and was able to treat it, finally giving me the relief I'd been looking for!
Similar to Karen, do you use tool or technique that's different in your industry?
7. You have a unique personality trait
I always think of Suzanne Evans with this one. If you know Suzanne, she's a business coach who's loud, in your face and not afraid to kick your butt!
People either love her or hate her. The people who love her appreciate a coach who isn't afraid to give it to them straight, while the people who can't stand her feel like her energy is too harsh and invasive.
Either way, it's a good thing, because it makes her stand out and helps her attract the right clients and repel the rest.
If you have a unique personality trait like Suzanne, let it rip! It will help you attract the people who are right for you.
8. You have a unique values or belief
For example, let's use religion. If you're religious, this could be something you bring to the forefront of your brand. Sure, it may repel people who don't align with your values, but that's the point.
If you're Jewish and your a business coach, you could be "the Jewish Business Coach" (that title is a little cheesy, but you get the point). And if you highlight this in your messaging and branding, it will help you stand out from other business coaches.
I know a lot of people are afraid to take a leap like this. But remember, it's a noisy world out there and you need to stand out and be memorable so you can get on with doing the important work you're here to do. This is one excellent way to do that!
9. Niche down
I'm sure you've heard about choosing a "narrow niche" plenty of times - most business owners have had this pounded into us from the get go. But let's talk about it from the perspective of helping you stand out amidst all that online noise.
For example, let's say you're a business coach. Well that's pretty broad. Business coaching is a big topic and there are TONS of blog and social posts being shared about it every day. It's easy to get lost in that kind of noise.
But let's say you're a naturopathic doctor who's built a successful business and you want to teach other naturopaths how to do the same. Now, instead of getting lost in all that online noise about business, you're being found by a very particular group of people who are searching for exactly the type of focused support you provide!
Consider your business for a moment - could you narrow your focus so you could be more easily found by the people who need you most?
Well, that's it - your 9 ways to stand out so you don't look and sound like everyone else! This is important to figure out because if YOU don't know why someone should work with you, they won't know either!
Action Step: Review the above list and choose 1-5 of the ways you resonate with most. Then start sharing them across your business.
If you need help, I'm here for you, just reach out!
Use the power of timeless archetypes to unleash your brand's core strengths.