12. Stand Out
You’ve had a dream, you’ve gone into business and you’ve slaved hard. You have worried how to pay the bills, you’ve dealt with nightmare staff, and you’ve battled with the landlord for the right to play music during the day.
No one is going to tell you how you should run your business.
Many businesses fail because they allow the customer, the public, their well-meaning friends, and their even well-meaning family who they should let through the door.
If you want your business to be successful it’s ‘your business, your rules.’
That is the crux of the notion of positioning yourself as the expert or the 'go-to' person in your industry, and what is known as Premier Positioning.
Once you set your rules, you need to position yourself and your business so that your clients know your rules.
Here’s the thing, and it’s not hard, you have a choice.
Everyone who comes into your business does so by your invitation.
You get to choose to deal with low-end or high-end clients.
You get to choose what type of clients they are.
You get to choose when and how you deal with them.
But what you don’t get to choose is the consequences of those choices.
If you choose to take a client at 6.55pm when you shut the doors at 7pm, that tells them you will always take them for a late appointment and go past your closing time.
If you choose to accept a client only after a detailed consultation and a written agreement that they will follow your prescribed treatments, that tells them that you will not mess about with ‘tyre-kickers’ who hop from one salon to the next.
This is also a great example of positioning yourself.
Premier Positioning is how you orientate yourself, your image, your behavior and the messages you give out about yourself.
Premier Positioning is two-fold: being seen as an expert; and being seen as someone worthy of respect. These two areas do often overlap, but you can easily be one without the other.
I am sure we can all think of experts we think are utter idiots, and people we respect greatly who are experts in nothing at all.
And I wonder if you can see the relationship right now between
Premier Positioning and Premium Pricing?
There is a symbiotic relationship between how you position yourself and the prices you charge. If you position yourself as a high-end expert you can expect to charge premium pricing. If you are groveling around for whoever walks in the door, prepare to have to compete with all the other grovelers on the street.
But how can you position yourself to stand out?
Well there are a number of ways and in my next article I will talk about one of them – Powerful differentiation.
In the meantime I think I should tell you about the time I abducted my personal trainer.
P.S. I have had many and varied personal trainers over the years. I find that although I am motivated to do exercise I find the whole thing around fitness a bit boring and like someone else to do my thinking for me – i.e. what I should be lifting, how much cardio I need to do to be beneficial, what I should be eating etc.
So last November I hired a fit, young, 21-year-old Aussie called Jaydyn to train me.
And we got on really well.
Not only did the programme he set me work well for me, I actually enjoyed it. I enjoyed the meal plan and I enjoyed his banter and we have similar tastes in music and shared experience in upbringing.
So as you can imagine I was devastated when I found out that he was being shipped off back to Australia, for wounding someone’s soul.
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