In doing some research, I came across this information from the Nielsen company (the people who do the TV rankings).
Here is the link to the site that contains the explanation and graphic: http://blog.nielsen.com/nielsenwire/consumer/countdown-to-product-launch-12-key-steps/
As I looked at this wheel, I realized how any small business – such as mine and many others – could use this same approach. Here is my take as it relates to my business.
- What is that I’m offering that sets me apart from everyone else? For my business, it’s the affordability of my services. That doesn’t mean I’m cheap (quite the contrary). It means (as my tag line says) “Experience = Less Time, Less Money.”
- What gets me noticed over someone else? It’s my visual image along with the manner in which I present myself.
- How does my message match up with my target audience? I have to make sure that the outcome I want from the ideal client matches up with the message I’m sending out. (I don’t want to be selling widgets and have the end result be customers who want to buy mattresses.)
- How am I telling the world what I really do? I try not to talk in circles (LOL!), but when I do, it’s generally because I haven’t identified my audience clearly.
- Do people want what I’m selling? There’s a difference between wanting something and needing something. People may want a sports car but all they need is a mode of transportation (plane, train, or automobile).
- What makes what I do better? This is the type of service I provide (very broad) with a lot of experience (20+ years) and a great sample portfolio (because no one is going to buy that car without looking at it).
- Am I worth the investment? I am 100% sure I am and I find it easy to show that value to the customer. Again, lots of samples and lots of references.
- Can I show my value even for deliverables that are outside my realm? Absolutely! I am not a graphic designer. However, I work with someone who is. What I offer is to manage this part of the process so the client is only dealing with me.
- Where am I in the online world? This is where Internet marking comes into play. I have to be all the places I need to be – or all the rest doesn’t matter. Maybe that’s Adwords, maybe it’s SEO, or it could be word-of-mouth. None of these should be exclusive; they must work in unison.
- Are my prices competitive for what I’m offering? I do know this to be true. I have a lot of experience in this field and that’s why I continually beat out my competitors when it comes to price.
- Do I keep my promises? There is always something that might happen (and sometimes does). I am able to draw upon my experience to handle these hiccups – and keep the customer happy and wanting more.
- Can I keep them coming back? I had a core group of 6 major corporations as clients for over 6 years. One business went under. Two opted to hire someone full time. One went away for several years and came back. One has consistently, but sporadically, used me for years. The last one has stayed by my side non-stop for over half my years in business.
I think this is a good checklist for any solopreneur to use. You must be able to address all 12 areas or you risk not having the success you hoped.
how can I help you be successful today?