"Good advertising is about standing out without standing out, convincing without convincing, and selling without selling."
Svenja Fischer | Project manager and Marketing expert
When I talk about being a non-conformist, it doesn't mean bending. On the contrary, for me, non-conformity simply means not doing everything the way everyone else does it - simply because "that's the way you do it in business".
I rather mean having the courage to carry your own values, special features, and - I like to call it - the character of your company to the outside world. There is no question that you deliver outstanding quality. But so do your competitors. It is clear that a dentist repairs teeth. But what does his work mean for the patients? What is behind it? Very few people decide on a particular career path for monetary reasons.
This blog article is now about presenting your company the way it deserves to be presented: unique, special, and authentic. What makes your company stand out? How do you shape it? Make the character of your company visible!
Tip 1 - The self-evident trap
When asked: "What makes your company so special?" I often get the answer: "Nothing really! Is that really the case? Then what reason is there for your company to exist at all? Just because there is such a big market? But if you look a little behind the scenes, there are usually quite different reasons behind it. Often the desire to become self-employed has arisen from dissatisfaction. Dissatisfaction with working conditions at the old employer, dissatisfaction with processes or services. This results in the desire to do something different, and better. Or you had a revolutionary idea that didn't exist before, whether for a service or a product.
But soon a feeling of self-evidence sets in. The great ideas are implemented and become self-evident. The value of what one does sinks in one's own eyes. It's nothing special any more. Wrong! Because your ideology, your approach, or your way of thinking is still different from your competition. Even if it has become self-evident to you.
Ask yourself these questions:
- Why did I actually start my own business?
- What did I want to change?
- What do I do differently from my competitors?
- What makes my business special?
You've already noticed: "Back to the roots" helps you break out of the self-evident trap. Ask yourself the most fundamental question of all: "If I were a customer, would I buy from me?
Tip 2 - Find yourself
First of all, take a look at your company presentations. Your logo, your chosen colours, the images in your image brochure, the structure of your website. Do you find YOURSELF here? If so, congratulations, you've done everything right. If not, then rewind to the moment when all this came into being.
- Why did you choose these colours? What do you associate with them?
- What made you choose this font?
- Why did you choose this particular signet / a logo without a signet?
- What kind of impression does all this give?
- And what impression would you like to have?
If you come to the conclusion: "None of this fits what I actually want!", then it is time to mercilessly confront the things that do not fit with the red pencil! Take your time and paint a picture of your company. Whether you do this literally or mentally is up to you and your artistic freedom.
- What do you and your company stand for?
- What solutions does it offer for what problem?
- Is it modern or classic? Inconspicuous or extravagant? Objective or emotional?
- Does blue, red or green suit? Black? Grey? Or a completely different colour?
- What do your customers appreciate? Inventiveness? Quality? Creativity? Speed?
Work your way towards your identity bit by bit. Get your employees on board, too, because they play a decisive role in shaping the identity of your company.
Have the courage to change something! Many entrepreneurs are afraid of losing customers or awareness through a new appearance. But be aware of one thing: if you already notice that your appearance and your company do not fit together, then your customers will notice that even more!
Communicate your new image with pride and conviction. You will notice that you will receive a lot of praise for your courage and the authentic implementation of your "corporate identity". There are always critics anyway, whether you change something or not. However, when it comes to change, it is usually those who lack the courage themselves who criticize.
Have the courage to do something different and be true to yourself! The rest will follow all by itself!