Crafting your unique selling proposition (USP) is an important component in running a long-term, successful business. The process of creating and writing down your beliefs and values, and aligning them with your goals and strategy, will help you to create an action plan for success. If you don’t understand why you do something, and you can’t explain why to others, it will be difficult to create either products or materials to market the products.
If you have a small business, you won’t be able to compete on the things larger businesses often compete on, such as price. Instead, you’ll need to focus on one thing that you stand for that is different from your competition so that you can take some of the market from the big guys. You can do it if you focus on sub-audiences rather than the larger audience.
For instance if you provide content to small business owners, narrow down what type of content you provide and to which small business owners. “Small Business Owners” is too large of an audience. Instead, perhaps you want to write content for life coaches who focus on helping 40-plus-year-old people get new jobs?
That’s your audience, so your value proposition needs to be discovered next. Understanding that will also help you market to your customers in a way that separates you from the competition. Perhaps your competition focuses on inexpensive or even cheap content. You will focus instead of writing well-researched content delivered on time, every time. In this way you are not competing on price; you’re competing on quality.
What Your USP Means for You With a well thought out USP, you can decide exactly what you want and plan how you’re going to get it. It can assist with seeking appropriate feedback, and gives you a direction for taking action to reach your goals. A good USP can even help you work on changing your approach until you succeed because you know what makes you stand out.
A well thought out USP helps your customers understand what value you bring to the table and how you’re different from the competition. It tells your customer why they should buy from you instead of someone else. It provides a promise to them from you about your products or services that differentiates you from the others.
Creating a USP is going to put you at a competitive advantage because it will help direct your actions today and tomorrow, as well as succinctly inform your customers about important information that will help them make a choice to purchase your goods or services.
Before you get down to business with a business coach, it’s important to understand how the entire process works and whether or not you’re ready to work with a business coach. If you’re not ready, it’s simply not going to give you the results that you want. To have success working with a business coach, consider the following success tips
Working with a business coach can literally change your life. But, you must be truly ready to work with a business coach and do the work you agree to do, or it simply will not work. If you’re not ready to follow through, reconsider wasting your time and theirs.
Outsourcing is an important part of running a business efficiently, and it can grow and become more profitable over time. After all, you don’t expect a CEO to do everything on their own; instead they have assistants and experts to do a lot of work for them. This is what makes them look amazing – their ability to pick and choose amazing experts to put on their team and motivate them to get work done.
So, if you want to grow and improve your business, you will learn to outsource to experts. It’ll make your business better, it’ll help you earn more money, and it’ll solidify your business to continue to grow without you.
There are different reasons to create a business or mission statement for your business. Sometimes you are creating it to motivate your business partners, yourself, and stakeholders. Other times you create a business mission and vision to help you understand how to better market to and provide value to your audience. You can actually create a business mission and vision that aligns all your functions, hopes, and dreams into one.
To create your business mission, answer the following questions:
Using the information gathered from the answers to the above questions, write a short statement in 25 words or less that encompasses the end results and how you see your business in five or ten years. This part of the business mission is the vision that you want the world to see.
Putting your business mission and your business vision together should give you a good idea of where you’ve been and where you’re going. Now, write everything out in about 50 words or less, putting it all together.
Send your draft to associates, friends, family and others who might be able to give you some good feedback about your business mission and vision. Be open to hearing the feedback so that you can narrow down your business and mission statement to a succinct statement that you can put on paper and frame to put on your wall to motivate you as you work on your business each day.
As you get feedback you can change the word usage, add to it, take away from it and make it clearer as you go along. Remember the point is to make it short, meaningful and succinct. Answer the most pressing questions of what, who, when, where, why and how and don’t forget to make a promise.
A good business mission and vision is something you are proud to show the world. Put it on your marketing materials. You can write shorter and more succinct versions down to slogan-like statements to help your market recognize what you do at a glance.
Having a mission and vision for your business is as important as having a business plan, and in fact you can use the mission and vision to help create your business plan, marketing efforts and so much more. The process of creating it will answer so many questions and help you relate better to your audience and your business.
The gestures you make with your hands sends a lot of messages to those around you. Sometimes you accidentally send messages that you do not want to send. Learning how to control your body language and what to do with your hands can make a huge difference and help you influence others during any conversation.
According to the International Society for Gesture Studies (ISGS), speakers who gesture more develop more rapport and trust with their audiences. They’re seen as warm and trusting rather than stuffy and dishonest. Take some time to look at YouTube videos of speakers who are considered good. They use their hands to make points and to involve the audience in the conversation. This is true wither it’s a speech or a one-on-one conversation.
Learning how to influence people by simply using your hands may sound like wishful thinking, but the fact is that it works. Learning to be comfortable talking with your hands, showing your respect with your hands, and communicating with your hands will go far in helping you influence others during conversations.
Promoting videos on social media is a sure-fire way to get more views and find more of your audience. But, when using social media to promote your videos you want to be sure that you do it in such a way as to get more views and more action, rather than bore your followers.
When you share something on Facebook, you have a lot more control than you may think over the title of the piece and the image. You can learn how to edit the Facebook post so that it's not just the same image or the same title as every other Facebook share.
When you want to promote a video on Pinterest, create a theme pinboard that includes the video you want to promote along with other images, quotes and information you want to share. Creating a themed pinboard will do a lot more for your sharing efforts than just random shares.
There are some people who will say that you should share something every hour on Twitter, although that might be overkill. But, it is true that you should share the same thing more than once on Twitter. Don't do it all in the same way, though. Share three or more times but use different words each time for your link to attract different portions of your audience.
You may not realize it, but your blog is a type of social media too. This is especially true if you open up your blog posts to comments. When you create a new video, you should definitely promote it via your blog by writing a post about the video and then embedding the video into the blog.
If your video is not too promotional but rather a good resource or answer to someone's question on another person's video, social media post, forum, or blog post, then you can post a link to the video with a comment about why this video will help them.
Each time you make a post about your video, make the blurb a little different so that it will not appear to be unthoughtful or hurried. You want to attract your ideal audience to view the videos, and that audience might be slightly different on each social media network. They'll respond to different prompts.
Images are more likely to be shared on social media. Pick a good thumbnail for your video and use that to share on social media as an image to go with your video. The image will get the attention of your audience better than any words you can use.
Never give up promoting your videos. Sometimes, it can seem like everything is so slow going and you're not getting anywhere in more views for your videos. But, when you keep doing a little bit each and every single day, you will break through and see success.
Using social media to promote your videos is an important way to get the word out about your videos to your audience. In fact, if you want anyone to view your videos, the best way to do so is via social media marketing.
Most of the time, the point of content is to spread brand awareness. However, when it comes to real-time marketing the purpose of content is to build customer loyalty by engaging in a continuous dialog. Thankfully, today this can be done rather easily with the advent of online communication, social media being one of the main real-time centric technologies available to use with real-time marketing.
The important thing to remember when crafting content based on real-time information is to let go of the control reins a little so that the content can get out faster. Then be sure to monitor the real-time activity based on the content you push out. Try different forms of content to see what works best for your audience.
Technology has been a huge influence on how people have marketed their goods and services ever since people have had goods and services to sell. Whether it was the printing press, the radio, television or the proliferation of trains and cars that made traveling easier, something new has always come along to change how marketing is done. But nothing has ever been as noteworthy as the internet.
Because of the internet, consumers have a lot of information at the tip of their fingers that they never had before in the history of the world. Now they can look up information about you, and whether it's right or wrong they will learn something about you and your products before buying. It is up to you to make sure the right information is out there for them to find.
Before the internet, stores had to host huge events that were quite costly in order to stir up conversation and social interaction. Today, they simply need to start an active Instagram account or Facebook group or page. Everyone uses some form of social media today to gather information and learn about your business and offerings. In fact, more than 80 percent of the US population uses social media.
It is important to put content everyplace your audience likes to be. If they like Facebook, you need to be on Facebook. If they like blog posts, you need to supply them with plenty of blog posts. If they like getting information through email, then you need to accommodate them. It can be difficult to keep up at times, but with help you can work smartly and efficiently by re-purposing content as needed.
Due to the advent of the net, pulling your audience to your information requires knowledge of search engine optimization. This can include on- and off-page optimization of a website and blog, but also of article titles, social media posts and more. It is all about attracting the right audience to your information.
Due to the ability to automate and personalize using technology that has been created since the advent of the internet, business owners can make their customers feel special and unique. Even though customers are smart and know a lot of it is automation, they do appreciate it and it shows in purchasing habits.
Bringing your customers to you is now how marketing works best, as opposed to outbound marketing which was how marketing started. It was posters, magazine ads, commercials - these things all interrupted the consumer to give them the message. Now it is less intrusive and all about bringing them to you with the right information.
It seems like eCommerce has been around forever. In reality it has been around in a smaller way since the 60s, but it really came into being as it is today in the 90s when the first book was sold on Amazon in 1995. Nothing has ever been the same since, and it just grows and grows. Online shopping is bringing back grocery delivery even.
What you can look forward to is augmented reality. This will enable people to feel as if they are in a store when they are really online. Movies have depicted ideas of augmented reality, such as the Tom Cruise movie about virtual data called Minority Report in 2002. Now marketers are trying to figure out how they can work augmented reality into the everyday lives of consumers.
It is imperative that you keep up with how marketing is changing in terms of the tools that are used. In many ways, the principles don't change much. You have to find a way to educate your audience, inform them, engage them, and build relationships with them, so that they trust you enough to spend their money on your products or services.
When seeking to become an expert in a niche, it’s important to realize it’s not going to happen overnight. You’re going to have to do your time like everyone else – learning, building, and becoming the expert that you want to become. However, don’t let the daunting hill ahead of you stop you. Before you know it, you’ll be at the top of that hill and you’ll never look back.
There are likely books and opinions out there already on your niche. It's important to read and soak in a variety of ideas from those who are already experts. Knowing the prevailing wisdom and how it came to be will help you on your journey to becoming an expert, and will also aid you in forming your own thoughts and opinions.
As you are learning from other experts, you'll want to implement what you've learned. There is no such thing as an expert on a topic who has not tried it or done it. Put into practice the theories you're learning about. Test out some of your own ideas, see what works and what doesn't work. This is the foundation by which you'll become a sought-out expert, because you have proof that you did xyz and it worked or did not work.
A mastermind group usually consists of a leader who is an expert in a particular niche. You don't have to join a group that is in your niche; instead join a group that is designed to help you achieve in your own niche. For example, if you need to learn more about public speaking to help promote your ideas, join a public speaking mastermind group.
Today you don't have to even leave your house to take courses to learn the things you want to know. You can take both accredited and unaccredited courses to become an expert. Courses are offered by even MIT that are not accredited. The important thing is that you learn what you need to learn in a manner that enables you to learn a topic quickly.
While you're involved with learning it can be easy to be distracted from your mission. Your mission is to become an expert in a particular topic and niche, not to become the best public speaker. So don't get your head turned just because you find learning something exciting - stay the course.
For some people, hiring a coach that can help them stay focused on doing what they set out to do can be helpful. The coach doesn't have to be an expert in the area you want expertise in either. Instead they should be an expert in helping people reach their goals, whatever they are. However, it does help if the coach is cognizant of your field a little.
You've heard your mom say it, "Practice makes perfect" and it's true. The more you practice something and gain experience in something, the more likely you are to become an expert. Don't just do it once a week; do whatever it is every day. They say it takes 10,000 hours of studying and doing to become an expert, so don't waste any opportunities.
It's important to persevere and not give up. You may become an actual expert before the public accepts you as an expert. This is to be expected, but can be difficult to handle. Just keep going, keep promoting, and keep learning and it will happen. One step forward each day will culminate in gaining what you set out to gain.
As you embark on your rise to expert status, you'll likely find that there are roadblocks impeding your ability to get to the top. But, you can overcome all of them with perseverance and focus on the goals that you have made.
According to anthropologist Edward T. Hall, up to 60 percent of all human communication is non-verbal. Understanding this fact will help you learn how you can demonstrate respect to others without ever opening your mouth. This is a great skill to learn because the more you listen and the less you speak, the more people respect you and perceive you as intelligent, helpful and creative.
Eye contact is really tricky. You want to make eye contact but you don’t want to stare crazily at people and make them feel uncomfortable. They say that the eyes are the windows to the soul and it is true that you can tell a lot about a person by looking them in the eye.
In a group situation, always make eye contact with the person speaking, and then generously spread around the eye contact as people respond to the speaker. When listening, it’s good to break eye contact every four to six seconds so that the person doesn’t feel creeped out by your gaze.
In a one-on-one situation, if someone is talking a long time you can look at their mouth part of the time and they’ll feel more comfortable. Try looking at their mouth, each eye, their hair, and moving your gaze around but focus mostly on listening to what they are saying.
When you first meet someone, usually people shake hands. Some people get really carried away and shake too hard. Some larger men have even been known to draw blood when shaking a woman’s hand when she’s wearing rings. Some people, often women, tend to shake hands too lightly with a very limp wrist. This can feel kind of like shaking hands with a wet noodle and is very unappealing.
Both ways of hand shaking can make the person look less than confident. One is over-compensating and one is downplaying their importance. Both have bad reactions from others and neither should be continued. Both men and women should shake hands in essentially the same way.
To shake hands properly, look the person in the eye, put out your right hand, grasp the offered hand firmly but don’t squeeze hard. Pump your hand up and down three or four times and that’s it. Mind whose hand you’re shaking, too. If it’s an elderly person or a small person, don’t squeeze as hard. When appropriate it’s okay to do the double handshake where you enclose their hand in yours with both hands.
Sometimes it can be hard to know what to do when you’re standing there without a podium or anything to protect you. Your arms feel heavy and you do the worst thing ever - you put your hands in your pockets or you cross your arms, thus hiding your hands. Try to stand with an open posture with your hands to your side so that you can use them freely for gesturing.
Showing your palms to others is akin to a dog showing his belly to show submissiveness. It’s a sign of respect and when you show respect to others you’ll get respect in return.
No talking needed to follow up and do what people expect you to do. Doing what you told people you’ll do is one of the most important things you can do to show your respect for people. What’s great about this is that it really doesn’t require anything extra out of you, just sticking to your promises. Remember to always under promise and over deliver and you’ll always manage to accomplish this.
When someone is talking, instead of leaning away and doing something else like checking a text message, get rid of the technology, lean in and truly listen to what the person is saying. Listen with your ears, your eyes and your body language by leaning toward the speaker a little.
Always smile at people when you greet them and when they are talking as you’re listening - unless, of course, they’re talking about something sad or horrible. Be sensible in your smiling so you don’t look crazy. You don’t have to smile in a huge way; just turn the corners of your lips up a bit and put a smile in your eyes as you listen.
When someone is speaking, it’s important that you face them as they speak. Turning your back, looking around, looking at electronics, and doing something other than facing the speaker will look disrespectful.
People have different comfort zones for personal space, but in general it’s about 30 inches. Keep that in mind when you’re standing in a group, leaning in, or you're conversing with people. Staying in their space too long will make the person uncomfortable and feel disrespected.
Keep in mind that these suggestions assume American, Canadian or Western ideas of respect. If you are dealing with other cultures, be sure to look into what different gestures mean by simply typing in the name of the country, and “gestures” to a search engine. Don’t underestimate the power that these suggestions will have on your interactions with others.