Categories
Content Marketing Marketing

Achieve These 6 Marketing Goals With Video Client Case Stories

Everyone has a story. Actually, everyone has several stories. Stories of triumph and success and stories of failure and regret. We lead complex and layered lives. 

Your clients, just like you, have stories to tell. If they are your client, you are a part of their story. It sounds hyperbolic, but it isn’t. Your clients will be talking about their experiences, including the one they’ve had with you, as part of their story.

Wouldn’t it be so cool if your clients could share their success story and, by proxy, your role in that success, with other potential clients?

Hell yes it would be. Here’s how you can transform your marketing with client case stories: all on video.

The Move Away From Business-Centric Reviews

People are moving beyond 5-star reviews on Google and collecting testimonials that are focused solely on their business. Companies are moving toward client case stories: letting their case study be expressed as a case story.

The narrative focuses on their clients and how their lives have changed and less on what the company offers. What’s more? It’s all on video. Video is

  • Easy to digest
  • Easy to understand
  • Easy to share
  • A powerful tool for building trust and engaging new clients

Video isn’t the cheapest form of marketing content. But when you invest the time and money necessary to develop a strong video marketing plan, a plan that doesn’t pitch but actually shares stories, your results will reflect that effort.

Think about it: why do people love movies so much? They don’t. They love stories. A movie that is just a sales pitch will not be watched over and over again–but a story will be. 

6 Powerful Goals You Can Achieve With Video Stories

Video stories shared by your happy clients nearly guarantees you’ll accomplish these six goals.

1. Increase Conversions and Sales

84% of people say they have been convinced to buy a product or service by watching a brand’s video (Wyzowl survey).

2. Track Your ROI

HubSpot conducted a recent survey that found more than 93% of video marketers say it’s an important part of their marketing strategy and you can measure the results from your video campaign, including tracking impressions, play rate, viewer engagement, lead generation, and click-through rate.

3. Build Multi-Purpose Content

You can use your videos on your website, social media, newsletters, and ad campaigns. Multiple videos, multiple iterations, multiple applications.

4. Build Consumer Trust

Consumers evaluate your website and marketing content with a highly skeptical eye, and possibly a predetermined reason NOT to spend money on your product or service. You have to work to gain your customer’s trust, especially if you’re handling sensitive matters or if you’re in an industry that many people are unfamiliar with (like SEO). People want to see and hear other people. Humanize your business and you’ll gain their trust. 

5. Boost Your SEO Efforts

As video is becoming an increasingly popular way to create content, Google gives ranking priority to pages that have videos. So not only is video a good marketing tool, but it’s a powerful search engine optimization (SEO) strategy as well. 

6. Engage Mobile Users

Not only does Google prefer online video content, but so do most mobile users. 

Pew Research Center found that 85% of Americans currently own a smartphone, and what are people doing on their smartphones? Watching videos. According to eMarketer, 75% of all videos are played on mobile devices.

Are You Harnessing the Power of Video Yet?

Your competitors are already harnessing the power of video stories as a humanized alternative to business. It’s fierce out there, and video case stories from your happy clients are a tool you definitely want in your arsenal.
GoBeyond SEO has partnered with a company that does exactly this kind of work and they are awesome. Because of this partnership, GoBeyond clients are offered a discount on this work. Find out more by clicking the link or contacting us today.

Categories
General Leadership Marketing Small Business Marketing

4 Signs It’s Time for a Fractional Chief Marketing Officer (CMO)

Many small business owners, this year especially, are still trying to get a grip on what works and what doesn’t. All the marketing goals in the world are only as good as the direction and leadership of the marketing efforts coming from the top. 

Did your marketing efforts pay off during the first quarter of this year? Are you woefully unsure and wildly self-conscious about it? You’re not alone. 

Whether your marketing is directionless or you need more financial resources to invest in a solid strategy, here are four signs it’s time to consider a fractional chief marketing officer (CMO).

1. You Have a Marketing Plan, but No One Is Available to Be in Charge of It

This is a common trap when the marketing direction is steered by multiple people or by someone who is not solely focused on marketing.

Your company brand and success may have been built long before the days of complex marketing channels and automation. In order to prepare for the future (or present), businesses are tasked with adapting at lightning speed, to keep pace with contemporary strategies, tools, and tactics.

Oftentimes, especially in small and growing businesses, marketing initiatives are scattershot and lack a cohesive plan. An experienced marketing strategist can help right the proverbial ship for a strong and successful future.

2. Your Sales Team Is Creating Their Own Marketing Materials

Your sales team may be great or your sales team may be YOU. Either way, if your sales team is creating their own presentations, one sheets, and PDFs, it’s very likely that those materials are unfocused and weak.

A fractional CMO can develop a unified message that creates an exceptional customer experience, makes you and your team feel more confident in presenting your offerings, and improves conversions – all for a more cost-effective approach.

3. You Have Lots of Pricey Marketing Tactics Without a Supporting Strategy 

It’s an easy trap to fall into. Someone says you need a new website, so you get one. You sponsor events and buy branded swag. You create a Google Ads campaign and get swallowed by the ad costs. You hire an intern to manage your social media because young people know social media, right?

You did all the things and yet, not a penny of ROI to be found. The absence of strategy will leave you frustrated and broke. You need marketing insights that help inform executive decisions, build the reporting you need to make smart business decisions, and then closely track revenue and growth. That will give you ROI for miles.

4. You Need More Financial and Organizational Flexibility

The very first ingredient needed for continued success is flexibility. You need to be agile so you’re available to capitalize on shifting situations or unforeseen challenges.

Locking your business into a yearly salary commitment for a CMO, Marketing Strategist, or even a social media coordinator is antithetical to the needs of many small businesses. Why? Hiring staff is a big commitment. What’s more? So is firing them.

If the relationship doesn’t work out with someone closely involved in your marketing efforts, separating from them can be an arduous and costly process.

Conversely, if your fractional CMO or outsourced marketing team isn’t working out, it’s much easier to end the relationship and find another fractional CMO or team. 

How Is Your Marketing Going?

As your business grows and your needs shift, a fresh perspective with more experience may be needed. While reviewing your first quarter sales this year, ask yourself this: Do I have the time necessary to devote to marketing and sales?

If you’re not sure, feel free to score a free strategy session with GoBeyond SEO. ROI is within reach, we promise.

Categories
Local SEO Marketing Small Business Marketing Small Business SEO

Word of Mouth Has Gone Digital

Word of mouth (WoM) has gone digital. It’s no longer good enough to hear from one or two people that a movie is good or entertaining. We won’t consider a hotel that doesn’t meet our own health and safety standards. We now rely upon a consensus of reviews before we make our decisions, even if it is something as simple as choosing a movie from our couch.

In 2022, this kind of feedback crowd-sourcing is ubiquitous. From restaurants to law firms, or  from pet groomers to industrial cleaning companies, reviews are (or should be) a big part of the marketing strategy for businesses, large or small.

Many business owners feel that their best clients come from word of mouth. And they’re probably right.

If only there was a way to have those sweet, positive, and wildly influential words used to describe their business immortalized in some way so that future prospects and potential clients could hear them–oh wait, there is! It’s called Google reviews. And if you’re not prioritizing Google reviews, you’re setting yourself up to fail.

3 Ways Google Reviews Affect Your Business

Online reviews are the closest thing we have to WoM in the digital realm, and they absolutely matter for your business. Here are three ways Google reviews can impact your online visibility and reputation.

  1. Reviews impact SEO. You read that right. Getting more of them, especially positive ones, improves your digital visibility and conversion rate. That means more clients for you. (Psst: Dealing with a fake or negative review? We’ve got you.) 
  2. Google trusts the power of WoM marketing. It factors in the quantity and quality of reviews to evaluate where and when your business should show up in search engine results. Just as customers use online reviews to validate their purchase decisions, Google and other search engines take a similar stance when showing results.
  3. Users and search engines have a similar objective. Google wants to weed through the vast web to deliver the right information, service, or product to you in the fastest way possible, and this aligns with our goals as searchers. In fact, reviews pretty much work as crowd-sourced WoM recommendations.

If you’re already prioritizing Google reviews and reviews from other sites, good for you. If you have a system or process in place already, even better. 

However, if you haven’t been able to net enough positive Google review to impact your business, it may be time to consider setting up an automated process to make getting reviews simple, painless, and effective.

GoBeyond SEO works with business owners to implement an automated process to make it easy for customers to write and submit reviews and to give businesses a cringe-free way to ask for them. Find out more by booking a free discovery call with us.

Categories
Marketing

Make Your Marketing Like a Capsule Wardrobe (Hear Us Out)

Do you find picking out clothes to wear an exhausting process? If so, you’re not alone. Other people find the process of shopping and picking out clothes for the day as exhausting as you do. Barack Obama, Ariana Grande, Michael Kors, Ellen DeGeneres, Richard Branson, Hillary Clinton, Steve Jobs…just to name a few. 

What you wear says a lot about you, so you want to make the right decision, but this is also why it can be so time-consuming and tiring. This is why many wealthy and successful people use what’s called a capsule wardrobe.

A capsule wardrobe is a foundational array of key clothing pieces that you wear nearly every day. It mitigates decision fatigue, you’ll know that it fits you, and you can get on with your day.

Fun fact: This is exactly what happens with small business owners and their marketing. They want to put their best foot forward, but the process of dressing their business up is exhausting and expensive.

The good news is that it doesn’t have to be. You can create your marketing message as you would a capsule wardrobe.

Create a Foundational Message for Your Business

But wait, you’re asking—wouldn’t creating and delivering a message with a few key pieces just be repeating the same marketing techniques over and over?

Repeating a message is the cornerstone of marketing. This seems obvious enough and yet, many business professionals wonder if they need to be saying the same thing all the time.

So to be clear: yes, you need to repeat your message, but how do you keep people from tuning it out? Won’t people get bored or even resentful hearing the same thing over and over again? 

Not necessarily. Here’s how you can dress up that foundational marketing message to help people remember who you are and what you do without being that annoying company that says the same thing every time you hear from them.

3 Ways to Dress Up Your Core Message

Much like creating a capsule wardrobe, coming up with your singular foundational message can be broken down like this:

  • Speak in a way that resonates with your PERFECT client. Are they cavalier or more buttoned-up? Are they creative or analytical? Are they more conservative or cheeky? Pro Tip: Talk to them in their language, not yours.
  • Explain your value clearly. In other words, what are you going to do for them? What problem do you solve for them? Be plain. Be clear. Leave no room for interpretation. Pro Tip: Adding a clever or sexy message is much easier with clear language.
  • Highlight what you do differently. You have the same core message, but you can play it up by highlighting what makes your business unique. Pro Tip: Highlighting what you do differently is a great way to distinguish yourself from the competition.

While this may feel like an oversimplification to some, that’s exactly the point. If you take the time and energy to hammer out your core message, getting creative with your marketing becomes infinitely easier.

Think of the Geico commercials. They repeat their core message over and over. They’ll save you 15% or more on car insurance. Insurance is boring; they make it funny. They come up with off-the-wall ways to demonstrate their message, but at its core, it’s exactly the same.

Not Sure What to Do Next?

Schedule a complimentary strategy session with our marketing professionals at GoBeyond SEO. We can help you define your target audience, create your foundational message, and help you drive that message home to your customers.

Categories
Marketing

How to Add Users to Google My Business, Google Analytics & Google Ads

How to Add Users to Google My Business

To invite someone to manage your Google My Business account, you must be the owner of the account. You can simply add a new manager by signing in to your account, then selecting the location or location group you’d like to add the manager to from the menu on the top left.

For location groups, open your group, then go to “group settings”:

how to add users to google my business from a business group

For single listings, open your listing and navigate to “users”:

how to add users to google my business

Click on “Manage Users” and then “Add Users”. Next, enter the email address of the person you’d like to invite to manage your account.

Once that person accepts the invitation, they will have managing capabilities, including being able to add and remove users and locations in the group you selected.

How to Add a User to Google Analytics

To invite someone to your Google Analytics account, you must be the Administrator of the account, whether at the account, property, or view level.

If you’re an administrator, you can add or change users on the level where you have that role. To delete users, you must at least be an administrator on the account level.

When you want to invite someone into Google Analytics, begin by signing in to your account. Next, click on Admin, and then on the Account, Property, or View permissions you’d like to access.

View access management in Google Analytics

Once you’re in your desired column, click on “Access Management”. There will be an Account Permissions list, where you can then click “Add Users”. Enter the person’s email associated with their Google account, then invite them by selecting the “Notify new users by email” check box.

How to add a user to Google Analytics

Here, you can also select which permissions you want the user to have, and finish up by clicking “Add” when you’re done. The user will then be able to access your Google Analytics account and utilize it based on the permissions you selected.

How to Add a User to Google Ads

To invite someone to access your Google Ads account, sign in to your Google account. In the upper right-hand corner, there will be a tools icon (a wrench). Click on this, and then click on “Setup”, then “Access and Security”.

Google Ads access and security

There will be a “+” button for you to click on. Once you click on this, you can select the level you want the new person to access, then, when prompted, enter the person’s email address. Once you’re done, click “Send Invitation”.

How to add a user to Google Ads
Categories
Marketing

How to Prioritize Your Marketing Needs for the Better

Oftentimes we hear a marketing term, particularly those in the digital arena, see that it’s working for our competitors, and decide that we must do the same.

But are your marketing efforts costing you more than they should?

If you decided to go to the grocery store for some wine, would you take a plane? Of course not! If you wanted to get to Tokyo from London, would a car suffice? Probably not.

How can you avoid spending extra on marketing efforts that’ll eventually get you to where you want to be? The answer is simple: define your marketing goal, then pick your medium.

For example, if you’re sure your website needs SEO, but your primary goal is to make more sales right now, then doing SEO to your website shouldn’t necessarily be your first investment in marketing. Will you need SEO eventually? Yes, but SEO takes time, and if you’ve determined that your priority is to increase sales right now, then your money would be best spent elsewhere.

So how can you prioritize what you need so you pick the right place to start and don’t waste money on your marketing?

How to Prioritize Marketing Needs in Five Steps

This simple five-step process will help you narrow down your choices and determine where your budget is best spent at the moment. However, these tips will also help set you up for future digital marketing success!

Step 1: Determine the true goal of your marketing campaign.

If there’s more than one, list them in order of priority. Examples of marketing goals can be: increase online sales, increase brand awareness, grow your audience, increase brick and mortar traffic, increase phone calls, increase appointments.

Step 2: Determine your budget.

You may only have room in your budget for one priority at a time, and that’s ok. (See Pro Tip #1 below.)

Step 3: Determine your timeline to hit this goal.

If you need online sales right now, pay-per-click (PPC) marketing may be a better option than SEO in the short term. 

Step 4: Determine which mediums are designed to hit your goal.

If you need to educate your audience about a new product or service, email marketing and social media are great options. If you need to overcome a hard-to-find brick-and-mortar restaurant, a billboard on the freeway may do the trick.

Step 5: Determine what success looks like for your business.

The word “conversion” can mean a few different things in the business world. As a marketer, a conversion is a lead that your company engages with. For you, a conversion might be a sale. One company could get two new clients in one year and consider that a wild success. Others may get two new customers a day and have to shut their doors. When you want to “increase sales,” put a hard number on that. Knowing your success threshold will help you determine if you’re really making money or wasting it.

Pro Tips to Help You Even More

It’s rarely easy to define a goal, budget, and timeline for your business, as well as what your version of success is. But don’t worry, with a couple of pro tips, you’ll be on your way to a smarter marketing investment!

  • Pro Tip #1: If your marketing budget is tight (like most small business owners), pick a medium that will help you make sales in the shortest amount of time. Syphon off some of that money to reinvest and expand your marketing budget WITH INTENTION. No more “Gee, I hope this works”. Stick with the medium, expand that budget a bit more. This is a great way to see how much more to spend and then when you can set a cap for that medium.
  • Pro Tip #2: See if there’s a medium that can do double duty. For example, social media pay-per-click ads, such as Facebook ads, can both increase brand awareness and potentially make sales. This is not true for every industry, but it’s worth looking into.

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with having business dreams that are unachievable right now. Just remember that big dreams are achieved through a series of small goals. The amount of marketing opportunities available these days is overwhelming and can make even the most savvy and successful of business people feel lost. Keeping your efforts clear and simple is the easiest way to see if you’re on the right path.

Need help defining and prioritizing your marketing needs for the better? Schedule a free strategy session with us at GoBeyond SEO!

Categories
Marketing Small Business Marketing

Provide a First-Class Client Experience — Even on a Budget

Are you familiar with Rudyard Kipling’s poem “If—”? This poem hits on a concept here; one so often lost in our post-pandemic digital world. What does it mean to walk with kings? What does it mean to lose the common touch, or in this case, not lose the common touch?

At its core, Kipling is talking about effective communication. Kings are faced with issues that are different from the issues faced by the common folk. Does it make sense to speak to the masses the same way you’d speak to a king? In most cases, it depends on the topic, right?

There’s a lesson to be taken from this concept when it comes to digital marketing: treat all your clients like kings, but from different kingdoms.

The concept of “the client is always right” has been lauded for decades, but to be clear, that’s NOT what we’re talking about here. We’re talking about giving your clients a first class client experience whenever they’re dealing with you and your company.

So how can you possibly give your clients first-class treatment? It’s unrealistic to make yourself available to every medium out there, and your time is limited. Here’s how you can impress your clients even on a budget!

Make Yourself Accessible to Your Clients

In keeping with the theme of kings versus the common folk, the key difference is access. The kings have access to you right away, or at least it feels that way. The common folk are those who are kept waiting on hold. 

Just because we’ve all become more comfortable making purchases or buying services online doesn’t mean that your clients aren’t looking for human connections. Here are a few tools to give all of your clients, and potential prospects, the king’s treatment without costing you a king’s ransom.

  • Website Chat. Many have seen the website chat feature on websites, but it does seem to fall short when the chat bot is really just a robot with an auto generated message. There are several tools available to give you the ease of automated chat and give your clients/prospects the personal touch they deserve.
  • Virtual Receptionist. There’s an endless supply of talented people who can help you fill in the blanks. BUT, that’s not what we mean here. How cool would it be if every time you missed a call from the office, your cell phone was pinged with a message from that prospect or client? If you’re in a highly competitive field, missing out on a call could cost you.
  • Google Reviews. Even if no one reads your reviews, having enough reviews to prove that it’s not just your mom saying nice things about you (thanks mom) is enough to show that you’re a player in your industry. But how do you get them? Do you go crawling to your clients, hat in hand, and humbly ask for a review? Sure, that’s one way to go. But wouldn’t it be just FABULOUS to have an entire streamlined process that will not only get reviews, but manage and promote them?

When you take the time to understand your client, but also make your marketing work at its most efficient, you can easily give your clients a white-glove client experience without taking a second mortgage on your castle. 

“If I had 6 hours to chop down a tree, I’d spend the first 4 hours sharpening the axe.” – Abraham Lincoln

How sharp is your axe? Find out about these tools and more by scheduling a free, no-obligation call with us at GoBeyond SEO!

Categories
Content Marketing Marketing

Put Their Needs First with an Audience-First Strategy

Have you ever tried to draw an E on your forehead?

Take your finger, pretend it’s a magic marker, and write a capital letter E on your forehead. Don’t think. Don’t read ahead. Just do it.

Now, for the fun part.

Did you draw an E or an Ǝ? In other words, did you write it so it makes sense to you, or did you write it so it makes sense to someone facing you?

American professors Adam Galinsky and Maurice Schweitzer devised the five-second ‘E’ trick, which they believe separates those who are boss material from those who aren’t. Those who wrote the E so they could read it are more self-focused, a common trait among top leaders.

Legendary business mogul Jack Welch disagreed. He mused that those who draw the Ǝ — who are believed to be more community focused — value collaboration, which is more likely lead to longevity in leadership. 

So what did you do? And, what does that have to do with marketing strategy?

When Communicating Your Brand, Write an “Ǝ”

Marketing firms tend to think in terms of how they can show potential clients that they’re the best. These tend to be agencies that are well-awarded and have awards all over their office, website, or social media. This is not an audience-first strategy.

Sounds good in theory, right? Sure. And there’s nothing fundamentally wrong with this, except for one big snag—clients aren’t really interested in you. They’re interested in what you can do for them, or, more specifically, what problem you can solve for them.

But how can clients know you’re really good at what you do? You have to demonstrate something about what your business does, right?

Let’s look at an example that demonstrates the difference between telling clients about you in a way that’s not very helpful, and telling clients about you in a way that communicates what you can do for them.

Consider the following business description:

Acme toy company is family-owned and operated and all of our toys have batteries included.

This information is just information. It’s not completely useful. It reads a lot like this: ƎƎƎƎƎƎƎ

Now, take a look at this variation, which shares the same information, but is worded differently to really speak to the audience:

Acme toys can be enjoyed right away because we’ve included batteries. We’re family-owned and operated, so we get it.  

EEEEEEEEEE!

This slight variation puts the focus on the target audience (the parent or gift giver) and the sub audience or recipient (the child). The second line leads with the benefit (enjoyed right away) and demonstrates that your business is considering their needs. 

So What Does an Audience-First Strategy Look Like in Real Life?

Of course, this snazzy example was helpful. But let’s take a closer look at how this would play out in your own brand messaging in real life with some tips.

  • Provide value in everything you share with your clients. How? Make your audience feel something! Make them smile, laugh, think, or even cry.
  • Be consistent about the value you deliver. Your audience will only come back if they expect you to continue giving them something.

You have an opportunity to do this in nearly every correspondence you have with your audience, whether it be a social media post, an email, or a blog article. Put their needs first and watch how this transforms your relationship with your clients.

Are you ready to begin demonstrating your worth to your clients? Contact us at GoBeyond SEO to discover more about our strategies for your digital marketing success!

Categories
B2B Marketing Marketing

3 Tips On How To Save Money on Marketing Without Risking Performance

Way, way too often, marketing is a waste of money. Marketing done incorrectly and done simply for the sake of marketing uses up precious time and money, which business owners lack enough of as it is. You can be generous with your clients, but it will always serve a business well to be stingy with their resources.

Marketing is a hugely important, long-term investment in the growth of any business. However, prior to spending exorbitant amounts on marketing campaigns and agencies, do yourself a favor and exhaust your non-financial resources first. Depending on how much business you need, you may never need to invest anything more than time and energy into your marketing.

The key to marketing success and saving money on marketing is efficiency. Identify who you serve, how you serve them, and where those people spend their time. Once you figure that out, let as many of the people who you serve know by utilizing the free marketing channels available. 

1. Acquire Knowledge In Any Way Possible

Most established consultants and coaches offer a free consultation or strategy session as a lead magnet. It’s a smart, no pressure way to get new clients and figure out if people click with you. The benefit to you is that you can get free insights from a professional. The information you learn in that consultation can open your eyes to options you haven’t considered, and make an overall difference in your business planning.

If you don’t already, be sure to subscribe to marketing blogs and newsletters. New strategies abound and in this industry, you need to be “in the know”. None of us have time to scour the internet for the latest trends. Subscriptions to relevant content allow the information to come to you. 

2. Make Yourself An Authority In The Space

One guaranteed way to draw interest and a sense of trust to your business is to portray yourself as an authority in your field. Posting engaging and informative content on social media is the easiest way to do this. Through these posts, offer your audience value in the form of content and they will begin to see your content as a worthwhile use of their time. 

Don’t hesitate to apply for business awards, whether they are awards for your field, in your region, in your demographic, or for your philanthropic efforts. Be sure to vet each aware to ensure that it’s not a solicitation, but there are always several award categories for which you certainly qualify. Adding to your credentials in that way makes your business seem more reliable to potential clients.

3. Form Strategic Partnerships to Save Money on Marketing 

More businesses than you think are seeking partnerships to grow their own companies. Find people who do something complementary to what you do. For instance, real estate agents and mortgage brokers, CPAs and bookkeepers, and SEO consultants and PPC specialists all depend on each other for some aspect of their work. An effective partnership is one in which the other business’ clients need what you do and your clients need what they do. When seeking out partners, don’t overlook LinkedIn. A well-crafted, highly-selective outreach on LI can be a real game-changer. 

Free resources exist, especially in marketing. Most marketing avenues love it when you use them because you indirectly market for them as well. It’s a symbiotic relationship. Wring out every drop of it you can and you’ll be far more well-informed about what works, what doesn’t, what message your best clients respond to, and what changes to make before you ever spend a dime.

Be sure to subscribe to our blog for more insights on how to save money on marketing through tested strategies and tactics that work.

Categories
Marketing sales

How to Discover Your Unique Selling Proposition to Beat Your Competitors

Have you ever tried copycat marketing? You pick a competitor, either aspirational or adversarial, learn what kind of marketing seems to be working for them, and then copy it. 

Did it work? I’ll bet it did; kind of.

You choose a similar method (you both have billboards), similar offerings (free consultation), and serve similar markets (people who can pay for what you do).

So now what? Now you have to be better than the competition AND everyone has to know you’re better, right?

Not necessarily. The truth is, unless you’ve truly distinguished yourself from the competition, you won’t be able to shine. Our advice? Focus less on being the best and focus more on being the ONLY.

Separate Yourself by Identifying What Makes You Unique

But why would you want to be the only and not the best? Shouldn’t you be the best at what you do? Of course, you should be the best you can be. That said, unfocused marketing is very, very costly and worse, it’s ineffective.

The most effective and efficient marketing campaigns focus on something that’s important to your clients AND something that’s unique to your firm. This is often referred to as your Unique Selling Proposition, or your USP.

Your USP plays to your strengths and should be based on what makes your brand or product uniquely valuable to your customers.

But there’s a catch: being “unique” is rarely a strong USP in itself. You have to differentiate around some aspect your target audience cares about, otherwise your messaging won’t be nearly as effective as it could be.

How to Define Your USP With a Simple Framework

How can you separate yourself from your competitors when you do exactly the same thing? It’s true, you’re probably not the only one who does what you do—but here’s how to identify what makes you different.

Every USP is going to be, well, unique. Here’s how to discover your unique selling propositions and leverage them in your marketing:

  • Make a list of all the potential differentiators that are beneficial to your clients. Get specific. Find a service or product that’s unique to your offering and solves at least one problem, even a small problem your client has.
  • Research the competition. Who are your competitors and what are their USPs? Look for gaps where you can potentially introduce your brand differently. 
  • Compare your most unique angles against your audience’s needs. Are there any customer needs that haven’t been filled? Do you see any pain points that you can appeal to that your competitors haven’t?
  • Take the information you’ve learned and sift through it to single out your strongest USPs.
  • Implement that USP (or USPs) into all of your marketing messaging. It makes a world of difference!

Once you’ve got it, use this framework to spell it out succinctly:

[YOUR BRAND] offers [PRODUCT/SERVICE] for [TARGET MARKET] to [VALUE PROPOSITION], Unlike [THE ALTERNATIVE], we [KEY DIFFERENTIATOR]. 

Creating a Unique Selling Proposition Doesn’t Have to be Complicated

Your USP can be simple. Do you have ample parking and that makes life easier for your clients? Point that out. Do you offer virtual meetings? Do you speak Spanish? Something as simple as easy or free parking can actually make a big difference.

Your products don’t need to be wholly unique in and of themselves for you to have a strong USP. Look for a spot in the market where you can stand out and shine that’s relatively untouched by the competition. Bonus points if you can infuse your brand personality into your USP messaging as well!

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Kristy is an Assistant & Coordinator of Awesome. She has worked extensively in academic administration and brings a varied wealth of knowledge. As a self-starter, she is ready to take on news projects and see them through to completion. Always curious, Kristy is an avid researcher and delights in the challenge of learning new skills.

When Kristy isn’t organizing or researching something, you can find her listening to a true crime podcast, re-watching How I Met Your Mother or The Big Bang Theory and coming up with some crazy shenanigan for her family’s next adventure.

5 INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT KRISTY

  1. Kristy prefers the Harry Potter books over the movies. Her favorite book is The Prisoner of Azkaban and her favorite character is Luna Lovegood. Ravenclaw house. She just started her 8-year-old son on listening to the books.
  2. Kristy has a nail technician license, esthetician license, medical assisting certification, associate degree, and bachelor’s degree. She didn’t get her full cosmetology license because she can barely do her own hair, she shouldn’t be trusted with someone else’s.
  3. She doesn’t know how to gamble but is originally from Las Vegas, Nevada. She moved to Colorado three months before her 21st birthday.
  4. Her high school graduating class consisted of only 20 people.
  5. Kristy loves gift giving. One of her great joys in life is finding the “perfect” gift.
Kristy Elias