Getting Past Generic

In today’s culture of advertising overload, how do you capture your ideal market’s attention and get past the same generic claims everyone else is using?

“working hard to be your number one choice”
“leading service provider of…”
“we put customers first”
“we listen”

Do any of these sound familiar?

There are two issues with the generic claims above.  1)  Your market assumes you put clients first, and assumes you are going to listen to them. These aren’t differentiators, they are a baseline to being in business.  2)  Everyone is claiming the same thing (that’s why these phrases are so familiar!), so they don’t help you stand out from the crowd.  They are just more meaningless marketing ‘noise’.

How can your business come up with true differentiators that accurately reflect the benefits you offer, and attract your ideal clients?  You need to start by Asking the Right Questions, and Asking the Right People.

Ask the Right Questions:

Asking the right questions is about digging for your differentiators.  Digging waaaaay down.  Past the outer layer of “corporate-speak”.  Past the second layer of what you think it *should* be.  Past the third layer of what you *want* it to be.  You need to get down to the core, the bubbling source of *heat* that fuels you.  What is that?  If we were working together, I’d start with the following questions:

What’s your story? Why did you really end up in this career? What was the spark that started it all?  How does the spark continue to play out in why you’re still there?

What drives you personally – outside of your “job” – what fuels you?  How is that related to the value you bring to your clients?

What are you *for*, and what are you *against*?  How does that show up in your work? How does that manifest as a benefit for your clients?

And so on…..

Asking the Right People:

“It’s hard to see the picture when you’re inside the frame”.  You can answer the Right Questions above, but you’ll only have half the story as to how you’re differentiated.  The people ‘outside the frame’ – your ideal clients – have the other half of the story.  So, let’s interview them, and ask questions such as:

Why did you choose (your name/your company)?

Why do you stay?

What caused you to look for (your product/service)?

How is (your name) different, and why do you value that?

Finding your true differentiators is a process.  It begins with asking the right questions, and asking the right people.  This starting point will get you much closer than you ever have been, to defining your true differentiators and ensuring you stand out from the crowd to attract your ideal clients.