Help your business stand out online
Right now we live in an age overloaded with information. New and old media is at our fingertips 24/7. Facebook, Instagram and Twitter feeds tumble down our screens and audio from videos and podcasts trickles into our ears.
Don’t get me wrong, I love this easy access to ideas, people and data. My business exists because of this information age and I wouldn’t have it any other way. But it also means we have to figure out how our message cuts through the noise and connects with those that need to hear it most.
It took me a long time to learn how to do this with my first business. I was always concerned with finding my voice, especially when it came to writing. I didn’t know how to make my business stand out and I didn’t know how to get traction with my desired audience. I would always ask questions on this topic at blogger meet-ups, conferences and of my fellow entrepreneurs. Over time — as my shop, blog and Facebook page grew — I realised that I had the answer, I just needed to embrace it and make it work for my business.
The answer was: my differences.
My unique point of view. My likes, my passions, my dislikes and my ethics. What I stand for, what I believe in and what I want.
I know this probably all seems very obvious but in a society where we are taught from an early age to fit in, seek permission and follow the crowd it can be hard to flick the switch and do the opposite by highlighting how different you are and broadcasting that on the web.
But this is where you need to start.
You just need to embrace who you are and weave it into your business and brand. These are the things that make you and your business unique. That — you guessed it — make you stand out! Once you have this knowledge you don’t need to follow someone else’s rules or constantly compare yourself to others.
So today I have a quick exercise to help you think about your brand more deeply. I will talk about the greater topic of positioning in another post but right now let’s answer some questions to get you thinking. The key to standing out is within you, let’s start to bring it out!
Here are 5 quick questions for you to answer, so grab a piece of paper or a blank word document and let yourself write whatever comes into your head.
1. How would other people describe you?
Trustworthy? Creative? Lively, crazy, fun, consistent, loyal, hardworking?
2. When do you feel confident, in flow and productive?
When do you feel like you are communicating well and getting things done? When you are working on your accounts? Teaching, writing, painting, taking photos or talking to clients?
3. What really annoys you and why?
Really identify what topics, behaviours or issues get you worked up. This could be anything like: unequal pay for women, climate change, politics, pickles on your burger, loud bars, bad photos, education choices, medical bills, over population, under population, house prices, sugar in food — find your soap box!
4. What conversations do you like to participate in on- and offline?
Is it conversations about gardening, parenting, healthy recipes, craft, travel, career building or blog writing? Crossfit, sea change, startups, investment, economic policy?
5. How do you like to connect with other people?
At networking events? A specific social media platform? 1-1 in person, on the phone, talking to a small group of people, listening, writing, through your art or forums etc.
These questions should have got you thinking about how you are unique and how you can use that to connect to others like you and build your tribe. Building a community of people that not only share your interests and want to hear your message, but who you truly want to serve is essential for your business in this information age. You don’t stand out online in business by hiding who you are!
Today’s questions were simple and the basis for building your businesses brand blueprint and thinking about your positioning in your market. If you want to figure this out for your business I am always here and happy to chat. So send me an email if you have questions at all.