What makes one person stand out from the crowd and attract attention, while someone with the same level of knowledge or expertise remains unnoticed?
Recently I was watching American Idol. It was the episode where the final 48 become the final 24. To have even made it that far is amazing, so of course the level of talent was outstanding. Yet some singers were eliminated in spite of the fact that they had the same level of talent as some of the winners. The differentiators were subtle but really came down to three “it” factors:
1. their level of self confidence and self belief
2. their understanding of who they were as an artist and what makes them unique
3. their ability to be vulnerable and open and let their true essence express itself in their performance
I remember when I was a performer in New York many years ago. I struggled with all three of these “it” factors. I look back now and realize that although I had some success, I barely scratched the surface of what might have been possible.
So how is this relevant to your business? There is a lot of noise out there and it’s easy to look at the competition and think “I can never stand out. I can never compete with these amazing people.” You’d be wrong about standing out, but you’d be right about competing. Standing out is about mastering the “it” factors. Once you’re doing that you won’t need to compete because you will be unique and certain people will be drawn to your style, while others will be drawn to your competitors.
Two of the best ways to express your “it” factors is through your speaking and written marketing messages. This expression of who you are becomes your brand. There is a tendency, especially when you are starting out in a small or solo business, to imitate what other successful people are doing. That will make you an imitation of them. Learn from your mentor, coach or successful colleagues, but then spin it with your “it” factors and make your business uniquely represent you, your style, your approach, your process, your personality and your values.
Then be BOLD about expressing yourself. When you get up to speak, whether in person or on a tele-class or webinar,
• Tell your story.
• Talk about what you believe without fear.
• Openly explain your unique approach with confidence. Sure not everyone will respond, but the people who do will be your loyal fans and ideal clients.
In order to do this, you will have to regularly take some quiet time to get to know what makes you unique. Ask trusted colleagues and friends how they see you. Notice when you feel “less than” and ask yourself if there is a belief about yourself that’s holding you back.
The most persuasive, powerful speakers I’ve heard don’t always have the best content. They have the most conviction and the most passion. The most mesmerizing marketing messages are not about selling but about passionate persuasion.
Work on your “it” factors and you’ll find yourself standing out as a star in your niche.© Copyright 2012 Janis Pettit