Don’t blend in – define your unique selling position
Competition is everywhere, in every industry. With Gen Y and Gen Z’s shared entrepreneurialism remaining strong, this high-level of competition will not only continue but also likely increase. Does your business have what it takes to combat a new offer? And while we are at it… where the hell has customer loyalty gone?
Our mantra at The Marketing Factory is ‘don’t blend in’. We promote that brands resist the ever-so-tempting urge to follow industry trends, to copy what their competitors are doing, and instead tap into and highlight uniqueness.
As humans, it can feel natural to want to replicate what we see as ‘success’ – whether that’s a good-looking logo, a funny ad campaign, a clever reel or a beautiful website. The psychology of mirroring can be seen in babies mirroring the facial expressions of their mothers, in teens who copy each other’s outfits, hairstyles and mannerisms, in adults who mirror body language – all for the same goal, to feel akin and affirmed, to fit in. We seek approval. Fitting in is about survival. As an adult running a business, however, the same desire for approval is there. However while you might be able to survive by mimicking your competitor’s brand personality or tone of voice or copying their advertising campaign, you simply can’t thrive trying to blend in.
Being different is a wonderful thing. It allows us to easily get noticed (a teen’s worst nightmare, but a business’ dream!). We’re not saying you need to be crazy or loud or over-the-top, unless that’s your brand personality and point of difference. In business you can stand out by being simple, sophisticated, even quieter than your competitors. Sometimes saying less makes you louder. Sometimes a simpler logo makes you more memorable. It all comes down to knowing your business, brand, customer, market and what makes you unique.
It can be difficult to see your own uniqueness from inside your business, particularly if the business has evolved from your initial vision. To get perspective on your business, look at your business through someone else’s eyes by engaging a skilled marketing agency (like The Marketing Factory) to develop a strategy for you.
Every business has unique qualities, you just need to recognise them, or create them, in a way that your customers won’t ignore and can’t forget.
Think of all the amazing brands that you choose as part of your weekly shop. Why do they make it into your trolley? What makes them so special?
· Research – Dig deep and get creative!
· Understand existing customers – Ask them why they choose you. This can become part of your customer journey automation.
· Accept negative feedback – Be willing to receive negative feedback to help you understand and improve your business and processes.
· Focus on competitors – Spending too much time focusing on what your competitors are doing will take your focus away from your own business and consumer valuable time.
· Only be ‘the cheapest’ – Competing on price is a tough game. Your profit margins are going to be smaller forcing you to sell more of whatever it is you can sell to make any sort of decent money. And, there will always be someone else out there prepared to sell it cheaper.
• Do you offer unique product or service lines that customers can’t get anywhere else?
• Do your products last longer, work faster, use less energy or are sustainable?
• Is your business part of a social enterprise?
• Do you have specialist knowledge?
• Do you have a proven track record of success, or are you well known and trusted?
• Do you offer training or a guarantee?
• Can customers easily contact you?
• Do you offer more payment options?
• Do you offer exceptional after-sale service?