Have you ever been frustrated because you don’t feel that people get the value you can provide? As a result, are you feeling pressure because your business isn’t thriving like you believe it could? You’re not alone.
Most service businesses are very similar to their competitors. There may be distinctions based on geography or the specific service that they provide, but that’s not much help to potential clients. Consider law firms as an example. There are most likely numerous law firms located near you. There are differences as some focus on family law, others focus on corporate law, or criminal law, etc.
But even if you’re looking for a lawyer to assist you with a family law matter, you likely have several to pick from. But what sets one apart from the other?
How Do Clients Choose?
When it comes down to it, the real criteria to help you select is their brand. But most service businesses including law firms have never intentionally created their brand. This makes it difficult for us clients to actually choose who to work with.
We all know there are lots of lawyers, realtors, plumbers, and physical therapists for example but we also know that some are better than others. We also know that from that smaller group of really good ones that there’s some that would be better suited for you.
Back To You
This brings us back to your business. You are passionate about helping your clients. You know you have so much to offer them. You know that there are some people that you can help more than others. You also know that there are certain people you enjoy working with more than others. How can you get their attention so they choose you?
How do you communicate to the right people that you would absolutely be the best person for them to work with? It’s not easy. And that’s why so many businesses struggle to clearly communicate why someone should choose them.
What you need is a brand that clearly communicates what you do, why you do it, and who you serve.
Forward Thinking Gets Lost
Yet, in the hectic quest to keep the business afloat, business owners focus on the familiar and often the short term. They need to make sales. So they use their existing marketing material and push it out there. They spend money on ads, social media, SEO, pens to give away, and new websites. Yet it’s the same old message and it doesn’t help people choose them.
Most of the messages they try to promote– when you actually break them down–basically say, look at me, I’m the best, We have the best rates or any other number of statements that anyone can claim.
The problem with these statements is that they don’t mean anything. Anybody can claim they’re the best. Anyone can claim to have great quality. But it’s difficult to prove the statements.
Back To You
Back to your business. What can you say about your business that would be very difficult for anyone else to claim? Your story!
No one else has your story. If only people could know how passionate you are about helping them. If they could just understand what drives you to come to work every day. If they understood why you’re doing what you do it would help the right people choose you?
Price Isn’t The Only Decision Factor
In a lot of service businesses owners feel like they have to compete on price because they believe that’s how customers make decisions. Yes, customers often make their choice based on price. But that’s because most businesses aren’t giving them anything better to base their choice on.
Most business owners can feel like they’re just treading water barely able to keep things going. It’s a little like going overboard at sea. Once you’re in the water, you’re very focused on getting back on the boat. In fact, you can be so focused on covering a hundred feet to get back to the boat that you ignore the life ring 3 feet from you.
You can get so focused on surviving today that you forget to develop a long-term strategy for your business.
Many business owners are so caught up in the daily struggles that they don’t take the time to think long-term. But what if some long-term thinking could break you out of this struggle to stay afloat?
Plan Ahead and Help the Right People Choose You
What if you intentionally invested in crafting a brand that explained to people what you do, why you do it and who you serve? This brand story would then be the basis that would guide all your marketing activities. It would allow you to have a cohesive message that would attract the right people. The right people would be the people you love working with. And naturally, they’d love working with you.
Once you build an intentional brand it guides you in every business decision. If you choose to use social media how you choose to communicate is guided by your brand. If you choose to create a new ad you create it in alignment with your brand. And because your brand is an extension of you it comes naturally.
Stay Away From Desperate
Often business owners feel desperate and as a result, take on any business they can get. Then they end up with clients that aren’t the right fit. These clients are draining and stress inducing because they’re not the right clients for you. But when you invest in creating a brand you set yourself apart. People will be able to tell how you’re different. The right clients will be attracted to you.
To be clear I’m talking about you building a brand that is based on your own uniqueness. You are one of a kind. This is what sets you apart from the other companies offering services like yours.
In our own business, we’ve seen how clarifying our brand has brought clients who are a much better fit. We’re happy working with them and they’re happy working with us. We used to have our share of difficult clients. We used to have to deal with the stress of working with these difficult clients. It made us dread starting our workday. It wasn’t the clients’ fault, we weren’t clearly communicating our brand so they would know we wouldn’t be the right solution for them.
After clarifying our message, our story we attract clients we enjoy working with.
If you’d enjoy working with more clients that are right for you it’s time you considered crafting an intentional brand. If the stress of dealing with difficult clients is something you’d like to avoid, investing in your brand can help. If you’d like to improve the effectiveness of your marketing creating your brand can help.
You can keep treading water struggling to keep your business afloat. But what might life be like if you invested in creating your brand? How relieved would you feel to start work each day knowing that your clients were a joy to work with?
If it’s hard for potential clients to discern what’s different between you and the next business why not make it easy by creating a brand that reflects you? The unique one of a kind you that makes it easier for the right people to choose you! It could just set your business on fire with lots of people wanting to be part of your unique story.
Photo Credit: Being different helps people choose you. Even if you are a flame! Thanks, Jacob Kiesow.