We work in a very competitive environment and everyone is trying to make a successful living out of their businesses. However all too often I see clients falling into the trap of diversifying their core business to the extent that the end consumer, your client, ends up not knowing what it is that you do.
I think this stems right from the core of our culture. I once read an article on a school in China where they saw incredible results from their pupils by making one fundamental change. They focussed on their STRENGTHS. For example if a child was really awful at mathematics but succeeded in playing the piano, instead of sending them for extra maths lessons they channelled them into music. This didn’t mean they didn’t spend time on mathematics; the focus was just on their strength not their weakness.
Our culture is one where people are constantly telling us to work on our weaknesses. It’s not to say you can’t diversify your business but if you are going to play in a space that is not a strength find a Ying for your Yang, a person who can offset your weaknesses with their strengths.
Why play to your strengths? (And these may seem really obvious)
1. Why stunt the growth of your business and damage your brand by doing something you’re bad at?
2. It is so much easier to work on something you’re good at and hard and energy draining to work on a weakness.
3. By working on your strengths you maximise your potential and can do that with far less resources.
So what does that mean for your marketing?
1. Be clear in your message and consistent with your marketing. Make sure your brand is always depicted the same way. People recognise strong brands because they are consistent in their branding, think Nike, Coca –Cola as examples. Be the expert in your field. Your brand can do a lot in helping you achieve that, if it’s consistently represented. The same goes for your marketing message. Be clear about what you do and what your strengths are.
2. Step outside your business for a second and see it with laymen’s eyes – what might be clear for you, may be pure gibberish to someone who doesn’t know your business. It goes back to the point above. Be clear and consistent with your marketing message and that will automatically represent to customers that you know what you’re about.
3. Be the best you can be. Focus on that and put a marketing strategy behind what you are doing. Not only will your marketing be focussed but it will be more impactful.