I know, I know, I can see from your website that:
- You provide a high quality service
- You put your customers needs at the heart of your business
- You listen to your customers
Well who doesn’t? Take a good look at your web content and marketing collateral and where your name appears substitute it with the name of your main competitors. Would anyone notice? Is it just the same bland cliché ridden gobbledygook that everyone else spouts?
If that’s the case and all businesses in your sector look the same, act the same and behave the same how do people choose? Perhaps it then comes down to price (not a good option) or they like the colours on your website, or they toss a coin.
The point is, if you haven’t got a voice why should anyone listen.
When it comes to having a voice I’d like to highlight something that Steve Jobs said many years ago
You’ve got to start with the customer experience and work back towards the technology – not the other way around
Note: Depending on your industry, the word “technology” can be substituted by products or services.
One of the reasons that businesses find themselves mired in the homogeneous, mass of “me too” offerings is that they tend to market their products and services and not their value add. So for example if you’re an accountant you market accountancy services (along with every other accountant). If you’re a solicitor you market the many services you offer (which tend to be the same as every other solicitor) and even as marketers we offer similar services leaving the potential prospect with plenty of choice (and a headache).
You may read this and think, we’ll he’s not talking about us because we don’t do that. But your website and online content says different.
So what’s the alternative?
What if you didn’t take your list of existing products and services and try to shoehorn them onto a continually resisting audience.
What if you took Steve Jobs advice and spent some time understanding your audience, finding the real needs and wants of your ideal clients. You might find that your current range of products and services are not a great fit but by modifying them you could gain a competitive advantage. Or by combining a few of your services you could create a new market opportunity.
You might find the need exists for a whole new range of products and services.
What if you considered that the “best practice” mantra you continually followed was in fact stifling your creativity and actually driving you closer to all of the other similar businesses you’re competing against.
What if you decided it’s time to take a stance and market your business differently? What if you decided to embrace content marketing and inbound marketing and to help educate and inform your audience rather than always trying to sell to them. Wouldn’t that open up a whole new world of exciting ideas and opportunities?
Concentrating on promoting your products and services limits the scope of available opportunities and opens the door to more price competition. Understanding how your products and services can help your audience improve their business by reducing their costs, reducing time to market, increasing their margins, increasing their ROI etc. and then telling them how to do this by publishing content on your site and across the internet positions you in a stronger position against the competition.
We can’t all be Apple but;
Steve Jobs and Apple didn’t invent the desktop computer or laptop, they didn’t invent the mobile phone or the MP3 player but they did understand the importance of the customer experience. All of Apples competitors had access to the same components, their designers had similar skill sets to other designers, and their production facilities were similar. But the end results was different because Apple understood they weren’t in the mobile phone, laptop or MP3 business, they were in the business of enhancing the customer experience and spent their marketing budget creating a lifestyle brand because they understood their value add and the needs and wants of their audience.
They dared to think and act differently, they understood that it was no longer business as usual.
The reason why you need to find your voice and stand out from the crowd is because most people with a need turn to the internet to find that solution. If people can’t find your business, or they click through to websites that are all about the supplier and not about how those suppliers can help solve the problems of their audience then any supplier will do.
Do you want to leave the survival of your business to chance?
Andrew Leon Walker
At Rame Marketing we work with clients on content driven strategies to help them to grow their business. If you’d like more information on how content marketing can help your business, read my FREE ebook: Content Marketing Fundamentals
We understand marketing strategy, content marketing and technical marketing and provide a number of content marketing services including:
Contact us today to discover how an effective content marketing strategy can help your business on 01803 413481 or email firstname.lastname@example.org