So Different is good? No, different is different, but THAT is the good part.
Through my work, I get to talk to a lot of business owners and entrepreneurs, and we always start out the same – “So tell me what you do”. I wrote an article called “The Elevator Speech is Dead” where I get into the fact that no one really wants to hear a speech in the first place, but that is not what I am getting at in this article.
Today I want to talk about what makes you different. It is the difference that makes you stand out, and will honestly make people like you or not. It is the like that we are going for. Once someone likes you they will go out of their way to help you, and the greater the like – the more they will do. Don’t believe me? Let’s do some tests
Do you like….
Coke / Pepsi
Walmart / Target
Disneyland / Six Flags
Italian food / Mexican food
UK / UofL (basketball)
OK did you circle your selection? The first are soda pops (or drinks- it depends what part of the country you are in when you are reading this) the second are “have everything” stores, the next are amusement parks, the next can be dinner or lunch and the last, here in Louisville, KY it is a difference of what color your blood is. But both teams play basketball by the same rules. So they are the same. If you were a bottle of coke and I asked you what you were, would you say “a refreshing drink that goes well with hamburgers or popcorn at the theater”? You could, if you were giving me one of those elevator speeches, then tell me that your bubble ratio is better than any other drink out there or your caramel color is more true caramel then the other guys, or that you are 5 cents less expensive on Sundays. But your difference is an attitude, it is an emotion. If I was a Coke and you asked me what I was, I would say “I am not a soda- I am the smile that goes with your hamburger when you are sharing one with a friend.”
Think about the difference of the list above. I know you can come up with a list of things that are different, and on it are those things that attract or repel people. Yes- you don’t want everyone to love you! That is the secret of being different that will make your product, your service and in the end you go far, knowing that you are not there for everyone, but for the ones that like what you are doing, serving, or just being! Embrace that difference, know how you are different, and promote that difference. As my friend Jason Mudd just posted on his Facebook page recently- “The masses like things. Your tribe will love things”, let the like grow into LOVE, and then love your clients back.
John “Z” Zeydel
Love-broker at Arkham Executive