Veronica Romney is solely focused on educating and facilitating individuals in their marketing and branding efforts. Veronica and her team are helping clients to stand out from their competition. They make it their goal to ensure you position yourself correctly so you can jump into the narrative and story that your prospective customer has as opposed to trying to force the customer into yours.
You Don’t have to be the Best of the Best
Set your personal brand apart from your competition even when you’re not the best in the business. Many businesses and sales reps are under the assumption that in order to distinguish their personal brand, they have to be the best of the best. The prevailing thought is that the only way to be seen as special is to look bigger and be better than everyone else in the same industry. This mindset can be exhausting for both business owners and sales professionals and can lead to burnout as they fight for consumer attention. Customers are bombarded with attention-seeking ads, streaming services, and other campaigns. Companies and salespeople do a disservice to them by adding additional distractions that just focus on how great they are.
Veronica teaches her clients to focus on something more critical: You don’t have to be your customer’s hero. It’s more important to be their guide in helping them get to where they want to go.
Tony Robbins, for example, is a huge brand. He is a big name and a big individual with a big personality. Everything about Tony Robbins is larger-than-life and at the end of his documentary, Tony Robbins: I Am Not Your Guru, he was asked what he hoped people would better understand about him through the documentary. His answer is critical to his branding and should be a great takeaway for people who work with consumers.
He said that it’s not really about people caring about the person, Tony Robbins. The Tony Robbins brand lets customers know that it’s the means to an end and it’s a company that will get them to where they want to go. Tony is aware that he isn’t the show and he isn’t the product. It’s more about how they are transformed through him and what he teaches. People respond to the things that cause change, keeps them hungry, make them feel fulfilled and feel alive.
His organization does that.
The Positioning Technique
CarMax uses this method of selling cars. You can use this tool to set your personal brand apart from your competition. The industry is overly saturated and the competition is stiff. There’s no point in fighting against the current. Instead, CarMax guides its customers where they want to go. Whether the customer is purchasing a car, trading in or selling a car, CarMax has made it a simple three-step process. They have removed the barriers of haggling and negotiation from the interaction with their salespeople and by doing so, have made it easier for the customer to do business.
This positioning technique relieves salespeople from having to be the product or prove they’re the best. Instead, they can concentrate on being a guide, mentor or coach for their customers to avoid burnout.
People need a guide when purchasing decisions need to be made. For example, someone buying a weight loss program or supplement isn’t just buying a product but the transformation that product offers. As a salesperson responsible for packaging products and services to the consumer, the goal isn’t to make the product the hero of the sales pitch. The goal is to offer transformation by helping customers understand how the product can get them to their destination.
Position Yourself as a Guide, Not the Hero.
Consumers today are focused on their self-interests. Consumers want their problems solved quickly and as salespeople, guiding them through their ambitions is key.
Develop your voice
It’s tempting to want to be a chameleon who can be everything to everyone but it’s also impossible. Yes, it’s important to mirror the person you are talking to in order to help build a connection but your voice must be unique to you and your brand.
Let’s take Warren Buffet as an example. He is a billionaire, investor, and businessman. Warren Buffet is famous for writing an annual letter to his shareholders to talk about his market forecasts and investments for the upcoming year.
MSNBC and Forbes have turned these letters into books. He has been able to deliver consistently, over decades, to successfully build a personal brand that people can trust and feel confident about.
Warren did this by writing letters to just a single person, Doris. Writing to just one person makes the letters have a unique and intimate tone.
Speaking to one person creates consistency in your voice and people relate to that when you connect with them.
Find Your Own Doris
Doris is Warren’s sister. He has an emotional connection to her and that’s the kind of affection and connection that you need to have with the people you choose to connect with. Finding your voice can be difficult, especially if you are new to sales, so find a favorite customer, someone that can really benefit from what you have to offer, and pretend you are speaking to that person every single time, no matter who your customer is. Eventually, you will be able to develop your natural tone consistently.
It’s the same thing in politics. Politicians who are consistent and speak the same way, regardless of audience or circumstance draw people.
There can be a disconnect when businesses have one person writing for their blogs, another person their press release, and yet another working their ads. Each person is going to have a different voice in their writing instead of having a company voice. It’s important that there is consistency in a company voice throughout.
Consider Asking Your Customers these Four Critical Questions
Veronica suggests four critical questions you can use to set your personal brand apart from your competition and help find your voice as a salesperson and help you understand your customers more intimately. They help to develop a relationship when you have an opportunity to survey a new client. The answers to these questions are a great vehicle to learn how to be the best guide you can be:
- What are you trying to accomplish this year?
It’s important to set a time parameter on the things your customer wants to achieve. For example, you can ask about a quarter goal or a yearly goal. Setting a time frame gives you an endgame and will serve as a guide to where the customer hopes to go.
- What do you think it would take to double your business results or your happiness this year?
Your goal is to enter their story and not to force them into yours. They have already been thinking about what they need to accomplish their goals but these questions allow you to go into the story they have already created in their own mind. What if their solutions are wrong for them? You have to know what they’re thinking to guide them to the right answer.
- What frustrates you the most about your business and life right now?
Whatever the answer is, your product and services have to offer the solution. You are in the business of taking away the pain and obstacles that prevent your customers from getting to where they want to go. Every client will have different pain points so you can’t make assumptions about what frustrates them about their business or life.
- What have you tried to do to improve the situation you’re in?
Your customer’s answers will give you insight into what they’re open to trying. Knowing that you’re offering something they’ve never tried before may feel revolutionary to them. You need to understand what people are comfortable doing.
The answers to these questions will allow you to see your client’s aspirations and what they think they need to double their business. Their answers will give you an idea of what frustrates them the most and what their pain points are. The questions tell you the mechanism and the behavior they’re already accustomed to. It’s why these 4 questions are critical in distinguishing yourself from the competition.
Stay focused on your client and maintain the goal of making them the hero of their own story. You’re there to offer the transformation.
“How Can My Personal Brand Set Me Apart From My Competition 2020” episode resources
Catch up with Veronica via her personal website, veronicaromney.com. She is also on various social media such as Twitter.
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