How do you find your brand’s unique advantage?
A while back, I read this article about finding the Three Mandates for Elevating Your Brand, by Mark Di Somma over at The Black Project. I immediately wanted to share the process with all the people and decided the best way to do that was to answer his questions myself.
First, we all want an advantage over our competitors. It’s good to have an advantage. Developing a brand that not only has an advantage over it’s competition, but also resonates with it’s audience is not always an exact science. If you aren’t willing to do the work then your audience will never connect with you. That doesn’t give anyone but your competition the advantage.
So there are three questions Di Somma has us answer to find your brand’s unique advantage. I’ll give my answers and I invite you to share your answers with me as well. I’d love to hear what you come up with!
Your Brand’s Emotional Advantage
What do you want consumers to feel about your brand that they don’t feel about other brands?
In one word … empowered.
As an independent, female business owner offering a professional service I want clients to feel confident in my abilities. I want them to feel they can trust me.
My job isn’t just about graphic design and branding. I offer so much more than just one off brochure designs and quick turn around logos.
Part of my process is teaching. Just about every client I’ve ever had has learned something. Whether it was about filing for an LLC, how to utilize social media or email marketing, managing their own website or helping you find your brand’s unique advantage … I teach my clients. Why? I don’t want you to feel completely reliant on me. I don’t want to hold their website hostage or make them feel like they aren’t capable of putting together a few graphics in Canva. Yes, I want clients to pay me to work. Obviously. You are capable of following directions and managing your own brand.
What I want clients to get from our time together is a sense of professionalism and confidence in themselves as well as my abilities. If they feel professional and confident in their abilities, that translates into empowerment. That makes it all worth it for me.
Your Brand’s Distinctive Advantage
How are you going to do things in ways that stand apart from the industry standard?
I think the only thing I do that is part of the industry standard is use Adobe CC software. Seriously, I charge less than other freelancers with my experience (20+ years). I take more time with my clients and offer a higher level of service. I’ve been in business for myself for fifteen years now and have never left a client in the lurch.
I think the biggest thing I do that sets me apart, though, is not offering cheap service. I mean, I do offer less expensive options as a rule, and I work with clients on budget all the time. What I mean is that you aren’t going to find me on Fiverr selling cookie cutter logos for $50 a pop. I offer a higher end service and so I have learned to value my time, my skills and myself. That’s why my clients value me as well. So … value and quality. You don’t always get that in a “freelancer”.
Your Brand’s Connective Advantage
How do you connect with people that is different from what others do?
My favorite question. I’m pretty sure if I asked five clients this question about me they’d all have different answers. Or maybe not. My answer is this: I don’t bullshit people. I’m not going to play the negotiation game and I’m not going to tell you what you want to hear. I’m also not going to pretend to be anything I’m not. If I simply do not possess a skill, I’ll let you know. If I don’t want to work on a project, you’ll know it. If you ask my honest opinion about your DIY Microsoft Word logo … be prepared.
I’m not a jerk, but I’m not going to tell you fairy tales. You deserve better. I’ve had people not call back after a consult simply because they didn’t like my evaluation of their brand. If I think you can improve, I’ll say so. Then, I’ll walk you through how we can do that. Neither of us has time to pussyfoot around. If you’re looking for agency bureaucracy and ego stroking … I am not your gal.
Using Your Brand’s Unique Advantage in Real Life
I’ve answered all of the questions. Now what do I do with this info?
For starters, say it. Say it over and over on social media, in email marketing, in your website content, and in person! Use these answers to craft your brand messaging and create your brand voice. Knowing your brand’s unique advantage is only valuable if others know it too. Put the message you come to here on repeat for anyone looking for your service to hear!
If you want help finding your brand’s unique advantage, you can set up a complimentary consult with me and we can talk about it over coffee.