More than ever, you have stand out or risk being ignored. You have to catch their attention or be deleted in less time than it took for you to hit “send.” You need to have a different message and be able to tell it in a different way – both in person and online.
I’m talking about the letter “D” in my S.P.A.D.E.S. formula, which stands for “Differentiation.” So, far we’ve discussed S - Social Proof, P- People, and A- Authenticity.
99% of the marketing I receive isn’t doing any favors for the sender. There’s so much repetition amongst competitors, and so much focus on the same old features-and-benefits discussion. If your emails and sales messages sound like 90% of your competitors (trust me, they do…), you’re wasting your time and the recipient’s.
Does your marketing pass the “No, Really?” test?
Differentiation is saying things that are not typical and not expected among all your competitors. I remember a course I took years ago that looked at ads for fence companies. 99% of the ads said exactly the same thing: Free estimates, wood/metal/plastic/ornamental, great company, great service. If a buyer looks at your message, do they say, “No, really?” (insert sarcastic tone!). If you are stating the obvious, and exactly what all your competitors are saying, you’re commoditizing what you’re selling, and commoditizing yourself. How does a potential buyer differentiate??
Are you being like the fence company? If you’re selling a hotel, do you say, “Full service/great location/great rooms/flexible meeting space/newly renovated/blah blah blah”??? Guess what…that’s what 99% of the emails and messages say from your competitors. Your job is to be the ONE PERCENT.
- Your company’s purpose, your company’s customer experiences, and your company’s stories are unique. That is what is going to differentiate you from all others.
- Your tone of voice in your writing also can differentiate you. Do you have a playful personality? Don’t keep it under wraps! Are you a sports fanatic? Don’t hide it! Infuse some personality into your messaging to stand out.
- Check out what your top five competitors are saying, and come up with 10 things that are completely different that you can say about your product or service. Throw in a fun one for kicks, like “Our product creates 25 hours in a day.” Or add a fun photo that is completely irrelevant (I prefer random cat photos, if you haven’t noticed). I bet you get replies from people stunned out of what I call their “Busy-ness” bubble.