Succeeding in a saturated market and standing out from the competition
When working in a highly competitive industry, how do you make your business stand out?
With so much business being online and the rise of social media, it can feel overwhelming to figure out how to stand out in your industry and succeed in a saturated market.
Thirty years ago, before the internet was so prevalent, many businesses were brick-and-mortar and worked with clients from the local community. Businesses marketed themselves by having a sign outside on their building, or they would rely on local marketing efforts such as direct mail and print ads. They knew their community of potential clients was limited. Their competition was centralized in the service area they worked.
Fast forward to where we are today, where we have the online world and can access people all across it with the press of a button. It’s easier and less expensive to have an online business, because it often eliminates the need for rent, hiring employees to work in the shop, etc. But the downside is that you’re no longer competing with just your town and surrounding towns, you’re literally competing with the entire world.
Even just thinking about how to make your business stand out can cause you to lose the motivation to even start marketing in the first place. Every time you go to post or market yourself, you might get discouraged and feel like you’re up against all these competitors – all these people that do what you do.
When this worry sets in around your competition and how to stand out in your industry, the only thing you’re taking into account is what you sell or provide, not who you are.
In this blog, I’m going to show you how to make your business stand out from the long list of competitors and help you see how this industry saturation you see online, is actually a mirage. It looks real, it feels real, but it’s not real.
Read on to discover how your personal brand is the key to helping your business stand out.
Competition isn’t Necessarily a Bad Thing
I’ve been an entrepreneur my entire life (I literally started in the second grade). About ten years ago, prior to launching my consulting practice, I was working in the health and wellness industry offering personal training, nutrition counseling, and more.
I had a vision of opening a bigger facility than the one I previously had, and embarked on the task of researching, planning, and deciding where to open it. I looked at a few different places locally and noticed that in one of the towns, there were no other facilities of the size I wanted to create. There were a few really small fitness studios, but I’d be the only one in this arena.
A lot of business owners see this and think that if they go into a space where there’s little to no competition, their business is automatically going to do super well. In reality, that might not be the case.
When you go into an area where no business like yours exists, the question to ask is, “Why doesn’t it exist?”
If there were really a need for it, maybe it would already be there and someone would already be doing it.
Just because it seems like you’re in a highly competitive industry, doesn’t mean there’s no room for you or that you won’t be able to find clients. I’d argue it’s actually the opposite.
If there are a lot of people doing what you do, it means there’s a high demand for it and what you have to do is look at what makes you unique.
How to Set Yourself Apart as Unique
Chances are, what you actually sell and provide people with, is not entirely unique. It’s a product or service that likely already exists and has for a long time. Uniqueness often comes from things that have nothing to do with what you’re actually selling.
What makes you unique is the differences between yourself and your competitors. In order to know this, you need to know a little bit about what they’re doing and offering.
I’d challenge you to come up with a list! And include things that might not be so obvious such as skills, personality, and processes.
Your unique skill set and processes can help build trust with your ideal client, letting them know you’re capable and knowledgeable and going to stay on track during the time you work together.
Personality is huge. Especially if you’re building a personal brand and providing services. We work with people. We don’t work with brands.
When your clients choose to hire you, they’re not just hiring you for the service you provide, they’re hiring you for YOU. Because they like you and your personality.
Your unique perspective and ideas, your vision and mission, and your ‘why’ are also ways to set yourself apart.
One of the ways I stand out in my industry, as a Business Strategist, is in my vision. I believe that as business owners, we have an opportunity to support the lifestyle we want by using our business as a tool, and building it in a way that gives us the freedom to do so. That’s why I’m so passionate about helping small business owners make the money they want and need.
That’s something I do that’s unique to me. And while I do have a strong background, skills, and knowledge in finances, I combine it with a passion for life, freedom, and independence to live the life you desire.
Think about how your mission, vision, values, and unique perspective are different than that of your competitors.
Another thing that makes you different and helps you to stand out in a saturated industry is your network. We all have different networks that we’re part of and people we know. We have access to different team members and resources that help to differentiate us from our competition.
Look at everything that makes you unique and sets you apart, and you will know what you can highlight in how you stand out. When you think about it from the perspective that you’re more than the products and services you offer, it makes it so much easier to differentiate yourself from your competitors, and makes it much easier to market.
Succeeding in a Saturated Industry Through the Content You Share
When marketing yourself on social media or otherwise, what kind of content are you sharing?
Are you sharing content that’s strictly educational or informative? Are you always telling your audience what you do and what your skills are? Are you constantly promoting your services?
Are you taking time to talk about the things that make you different and unique?
One thing I see a lot is personal brands sharing generic, dry content. Anyone can share similar templates to the ones I do, share budgeting tips, and information on how to price your services using a mathematical formula, but not everyone can share life from my unique perspective, my personality, and not everyone is driven by the desire to help entrepreneurs succeed for the same reasons I am.
People are choosing to work with you because they like something about you. You make them feel like they can accomplish their goals and are going to support them. They choose you because you show that you genuinely care about them.
When you think about yourself out there, think beyond the dry content and share who you are, what you’re passionate about, what your mission is, and why do you care so much about what you do? Why are you in business in the first place? Who do you love working with?
Share these things in your marketing. The more you do, the more you will stand out from the competition and differentiate yourself in the marketplace.
How Much Competition Do You Really Have?
As you start to think about everything that makes you unique, even in the most competitive industry, you’ll quickly realize that you actually have very little competition. If any.
I know that’s a bold thing to say, but in the end, we’re all unique individuals, and so are our brands. No one can replicate it. And it’s that little something that makes you and I, and everyone else special. You bring something to this world that no one else can.
That’s what connects you to your target audience.
In order to stand out in your industry, focus on getting clear on who you are, who your clients are, what they need, and why you want to help. That’s what will help you to connect to them, and what will lead them to connect more with you.
Build your business the way you want, with your mission, vision, and values. Create a personal brand that resonates with you, and it will resonate with your audience.
Then, don’t worry about the competition. Because there is no other you.
I hope this blog inspired you to think differently about competition and standing out in your business. If you have questions or want to make some progress in your own business and strategize how to set yourself apart from the competition, schedule a complimentary 30-minute discovery call with me HERE and we’ll get started!