5 Ways to Make Your Business Stand Out in a Noisy Marketplace

brand strategy conscious business spiritual marketing Nov 04, 2021

Recently I was honored to attend a webinar interview with Seth Godin. If you don’t know who he is, then go check him out. He’s basically the Godfather of Modern Marketing! 

Think permission selling (vs push selling), email marketing (NOT spam email), and the importance of knowing and serving our customers at the highest level possible. 

A few of his books are Permission Marketing, Purple Cow, and Linchpin and my favorite, All Marketers are Liars.  I recommend any and all of Seth's books!

According to Seth, and I agree, in order to stand out, it’s not about being the cheapest, or the loudest. It’s about solving that person’s problem.

 

Seth said, “In a cynical world, the most valuable asset a company can have is TRUST. If they don’t trust you, they won’t click. The way to gain market share is to find people who are already looking for you.” 

 

  • How do you build the trust that is critical to this new economy?
  • In an online world where there is so much information, so many websites, so much clutter in your inbox, what can you do to make your business stand out?
  • How do you attract the people who are already looking for what you can do for them?  


Here are 5 suggestions that you can implement that will help you build trust and stand out in a noisy world: 


1. Build your brand in the right order.

Think back to when you started your business.  What’s the first thing you did?  Did you get a logo?  Build your website?  Pick out a color scheme?  Order cards?

(Bonus points for those of you who said “I got a business license and set up an LLC.” ;-)

 

How many of you first worked to get clarity about what you are doing, and why you’re doing it?

People often think a brand is a website.  And it is.  But it’s not.  There is a lot more that should happen before your website is launched.   

The BIGGEST MISTAKE I see entrepreneurs making is throwing money in the wrong places at the wrong time. Would you build a house by starting with the paint and wallpaper?  Designing your brand should be an entire planned process - to create the kind of brand that builds momentum and makes you money.  

The only way to get that is going through your brand journey in the right order. Check out this illustration to give you a sense of why this building a brand in order is critical to your success. 

 


Now let's go through each of the 3 steps next...

 

2. CLARIFY - The first step in a brand journey


This step is your foundation, it's your brand story, your message. Your brand should be a reflection of who you are and what your values are, and in a language that your prospect can understand. 

An example: People never come up to me and say: 

“Lee, I am seeking clarity and direction in the discovery of my unique selling position.” 

What they do say is something like:

“I need more leads!”  "I want to get more speaking gigs."  "I want to make a bigger impact."

Your messaging should always answer their question: "What will my life look like after you help me solve this problem?".

  • Is your brand message conveying what you stand for?
  • Are you able to quickly and clearly describe the benefits your clients experience?   

It takes a lot of energy to run a business that you’re not in alignment with. Besides, when you aren’t genuine and you’re trying to be someone you aren’t, then you’d be attracting clients who were looking for something besides what you do offer! 

No one wants to waste time researching a business that promises a solution to their problem, but actually does something different.   

Don’t try to be everything to everyone - pick a lane and stay in it. 

What you want is for people to say: “Wow! I feel like I know you just by looking at your website!”

They recognize you as their leader! 

When people know you, they will like you.  This is the connection that fosters trust.  Think about it - we only want to work with people we trust.  


What exactly do you need to get clear on?  Start by asking yourself these questions:

 

1) Who am I?   This is your unique self, and your expertise, skills, and wisdom.  

2) What do I stand for? This is your Why. It’s how you roll - the way you do things. Your signature system comes from this inquiry.  

3) Why should they care? What are the benefits people get when they work with you?  What are the pain points you solve for your people?  How are you going to make their life better?  

When you get clear on the answers to these 3 questions, you will be led to your power positioning that automatically attracts those you are meant to serve. 

 

Be true to yourself, your business, and in turn, they will be true to you in their brand loyalty.  

 

 

3. CAPTIVATE - Capture their attention, the 2nd step.

So now we get to do some fun stuff!  (Really, the previous parts are fun too…  but remember what I asked earlier.  Isn’t this the part you thought of when I asked “what’s the first thing you did?”  It was probably something from this section.)

Now that you have your Brand Story, we want to design our Brand Identity.  

This is the paint in your house, this is the frosting on the cake.  Think of this part like an art project. 

But don’t just pick a color because you like it.  You don’t pick an image of kittens just because you read that if you use kittens, you will connect and engage. 

Did you know that the brain processes images 60,000 faster than text?  

So choose images that tell your brand story visually, and depicts how someone will feel having engaged you.  I can’t tell you how many websites I audit that have beautiful scenery photos. Such a waste of prime website space!  

Are your images professionally-shot?  

Your website and your LinkedIn business profile are not the place for your cute beach selfie.  You want to appear as someone who people want to work with, and can trust.  (Of course, if your business is a travel guide to exotic locales, then yes, the beach selfie and those beautiful scenery shots would be appropriate and in brand ;-)

Are you beginning to see now why choosing your logo and designing your website has to come after you develop your brand story?

Remember I said that my biggest frustration is seeing people throw money in the wrong places at the wrong time.  This is called piecemeal branding, and is what happens if you skip ahead to this part without doing the foundational work first.   

The frosting doesn't matter if the cake tastes like crap!



4. COMMUNICATE - Step 3, the branches and leaves

Build your offers & get in front of your ideal audience.

Once you have built your brand story messaging, and your brand visuals, then you are ready to communicate with the world your offers, products and services. 

Consider...

Do you have offers that make sense, make money and serve them?  

People don’t buy what they NEED. People buy what they WANTIt’s up to you to guide their experience and the way we talk about our offers. 

It‘s the story!

 

Is your message getting in front of your ideal customer? 

This is about taking the time to really understand who your audience is, so that you can meet them where they are. When you do this, you will see that going where they are means they are already looking for you. (easier sales - no convincing) 

 

Is it consistent across everywhere you communicate?  

If your message is confusing or disjointed, they won’t contact you for more information - they’ll just move on to your competition. Your website, email, social media, video marketing, chat bots, webinars, workshops, the way you answer the phone, and everything in between, must be consistent. If you confuse, you lose. 
 

 

Is it easy for your visitors to find the information they want?  

Don’t make people work for it - simplify it and make it easy for them to understand.  Remember that you are an expert - but they aren’t.  Don’t confuse people with jargon and technical terms - they don’t want the details. Don’t use “academic speak” or talk in big words (unless your audience is those specific people who will understand).  Be real and don’t complicate it. 

Help them build the trust that you can solve their problem.  

 

 

5. ACTION - Get yourself out there.  

There are many ways for you to start to find and connect with the people you’re here to serve.  Find out where those people are likely to be - which often is where you would go anyway!   

  • Join online communities with people who have similar interests.  
  • Write articles and blogs, 
  • Participate in interviews and podcasts, 
  • Book speaking engagements - even for groups of 5.  A simple 15 minute lunch-and-learn talk will grab people’s attention and prompt them to want more. 

All of these will give you exposure and build your brand and your name.

 

IN SUMMARY:

  • Be open and vulnerable to discovering your unique and distinct brand story.
  • Reflect that truth in your business and your communication.
  • Do the “hard” part first. (not the logo) 

When we get clear on who we are and why we’re doing what we are doing, we gain massive confidence and our business builds momentum.  

At the end of the day, it's all about whether we can allow ourselves to step into who we truly are, and boldly declare our views to the world.

And when we start with this in mind, and do the foundational work, you create a business that thrives.  And one that magically attracts your ideal client. ;-) 

 

Just always remember, the ONLY thing people want to know is how can you help me solve my problem?  

 

 

 

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