stand-out-of-the-crowd

Sean,

I am in the Atlanta area and have been operating my business for 9 years now. It seems like everyday there is someone new jumping in the business and it is making it very hard for me to grow my business. I want to stand out from the field. I want people to notice me and choose me over every other guy out there who does not take this business as seriously as I do. Can you lead me in the right direction?

Terrell

Terrell,

Competition exists everywhere so don’t think that this is specific to your area. It is unfortunate that there is such a low barrier of entry into this industry, but that is the case. When your area becomes saturated with options for customers, you are right, you have to do whatever is necessary to stand out. In a perfect world, you have an enormous advertising budget and you can splash your name everywhere imaginable. But I am going to assume you are not working with a rich uncle’s bank account. Here are a few things you can do:

1.) Create a Marketing Plan. Sit down and do it. Many people in this industry pick a few forms of advertising for the season, throw it against the wall and see what sticks. That is not a plan. You have to decide what you are going to do, when you are going to do it and stick to the plan.

2.) Evaluate your competition. Who are they? What do they do? How do they advertise? What services do they offer? What areas do they service? Do they have a website? Do they directly compete with you? Do you need to improve your positioning in the marketplace based on what you have seen from your competitiors? What makes you better than them?

3.) Define a USP – a Unique Selling Proposistion – what makes you different? What makes you a better choice? Why should someone hire you instead of anyone else? Is it because of the work you do? The quality of the work you do? The way you treat your customers? The prices you charge? Figure that out.

4.) Communicate your USP. A lot of people in this industry claim they are different or special or unique, and some of them actually are. Where most fall short is comunicating this. You must let your audience know what makes you different and why that difference is worth hiring you over someone else.