Thursday, March 29, 2012

Narrow Your Focus To Get In The Door

Marketing your brand is a tough game isn't it? Most times you just seem to be spinning around and around and it's just not sticking. You may even ask yourself, "Why can't they see the value in what I do?"

One of the reasons may be a common belief that when you sell yourself, it's wise to lay out on the table everything that you offer. For instance if you were dentist, you might say we do:

• extractions
• fillings
• root canals
• cleaning
• caps
• retainers etc.

While on the surface this seems the right thing to do - do you realize that if you leave one thing out, your public will think that you don't do that item. Seem's dumb, but I've seen it and experienced it myself. I once asked a client why they went elsewhere for a service that I perform and they stated that "I didn't know you did that." So you really can't win by laying all your cards out on the table. Plus it's an awful lost to digest.

A better way I believe is to narrow your focus and go to market focused on one thing that absolutely resonates with them. Out of everything you do, where can you focus? I recently asked a mortgage broker to consider this during a conversation. The person I was speaking with happened to mention that his background was in farming, and that he still dabbled in it. As a mortgage broker he told me all that he offered and his pitch was not unlike any other mortgage broker. When I pointed out this sameness, he shrugged and showed his frustration with the problem.

"what", I said, "if you were to focus entirely on the agri business, could you still do handsomely?" "Definitely," he replied. So I told him that he should consider becoming the expert in agri mortgages and focus his message to that effort. That way could separate himself from the herd, reduce his competitive environment and concentrate on an area he was passionate about. It would be less frustrating and more fun. Over time he would be the go-to person for that industry.

The beauty of it is that once they're in the door and they see and benefit from your value - you are golden to them. They want to discover what other services you can offer them. Your focus gives them a reason to look at you differently.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Branding in 5 minutes or less.

Tonight I have to speak on branding to a Linkedin group. I have only 5 minutes so I've titled it - Branding in 5 minutes or less. The following are my speaking points:

• Your brand is not your logo and tag line.

• Your brand is your reputation, and you have one whether you want one or not.

• You can choose to define your brand or you can let your competition do that for you.

• To test your brand strength - tomorrow morning ask the first person at your place of 
business "what do we do here?" 
The answer you get is their perception of your brand. In branding, perception is reality.

• If you don't stand out from your competition then you have a branding problem.

• If you are always selling on price, you have a branding problem.

• If your staff are uninspired, you have a branding problem

• If you are not selling from a leadership position, you have a branding problem

• If you are selling with lots of messages, you have a branding problem

If you ignore your brand, your competition loves you.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

From The Shark Tank To Your Eyes.

I thought I'd share a linking story with you.

The other day I went onto Twitter for the first time in as many days. There I noticed that a reader had posted a link to a story I had written for It was about the difference between a brand and a logo. The interesting thing was that she, got the link from another person's Facebook page. That person was Barbara Corcoran. I was wondering who she was and it turns out that she is one of the investors in the Shark Tank television show. Barbara liked the article and linked it to her Facebook readers. So from Noobpreneur, to Facebook, to Twitter and onward to @shayrealestate and her followers and who know how many more links.

It's a classic internet trail and one that shows you that you never know who is reading your opinion. Barbara's generous sharing put my opinion before the eyes of thousands who might not otherwise have read it. 

Friday, March 2, 2012

Do You Want To Improve Your Way Of Doing Business?

If you happen to be in the Windsor Ontario area on March 22nd, there is an all-day business event called "Build and Grow Your Business." Presented by GLISC an industrial sales networking group, this event features 7 experts on a range of topics. Every one of the geared to provide valuable information that you can use right now. As the President of GLISC, I can assure you that the opportunity to network and learn is at its peak during any of our popular events. Check out the info on our website. If networking with an industrial base appeals to you, we'd love to have join our group.
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