Know Yourself, Know Your Business

Every piece of communication we have in and around our business is a marketing opportunity. Yet, if someone were to ask you what is your business about? Would you be able to answer them confidently and clearly?

It’s really important to know who we are, what we do and how we do it. This sounds simple, but it isn’t! Our industries, our society, even our world are full of words that we say and use without ever truly thinking about what they mean to us. How many times have you heard people use phrases like “points of difference”, “USP”, “great service” or “family owned business”? Without considering exactly what phrases like these actually mean to you, they are simply empty words instead of meaningful phrases about our business.

Any words or phrases we use within our description of ourselves and our business needs to have a meaning, we need to know exactly why we believe such words or phrases apply to us. We should be able to communicate our belief in those words or phrases eloquently and with confidence. If we do this well, we quickly lay out for our potential customers exactly how our company operates and what they can look forward to experiencing with us. Here’s an example of what I mean:



Brand Guru Bobby Checks Out A Wexford Beach

One of my best friends in the world is my fine dog Bobby. Being both an expat and a location independent soul, I travel a lot. When I do, it’s really important to me that Bobby is well looked after when I’m not there. Recently, when choosing a kennel here in Wicklow, I called a few local recommendations. All of the kennels had really good accommodation with heat lamps, cosy beds and all kinds of wonderful things for the dogs to enjoy. To make a choice, I had to dig further. Three questions allowed me to separate one kennel from the other. Here is how it went:


Kennel A

Me: When can I drop off and pick up my dog?
Kennel A: Whenever you want.
Me: How many times will he be exercised each day?
Kennel A: As many times as you want.
Me: What will you feed him?
Kennel A: Whatever you want.

Kennel A certainly wanted to please me, and I’m sure in his mind he was offering a “good service” but he left me with no impression or understanding of what he or his business are about and how they specifically look after dogs.


Compare this now with Kennel B:

Me: When can I drop and pickup my dog?
Kennel B: Between 10 and 11 AM or between 5 and 6 PM
Me: How many times will he be exercised each day?
Kennel B: Twice a day for one hour off lead
Me: What will you feed him?
Kennel B: Hills dog food as recommended by many vets

Which one of these did I go with in the end? Which one gave me confidence that they would look after my dog well? Was it Kennel A who would do whatever I wanted, or Kennel B that gave me a strong impression of who they are and in turn how they specifically look after dogs? It was of course, Kennel B!

Knowing who we are, what we’re about and how we work, allows us to give prospective customers instant insight into how our service might work for them. Stating this confidently within all our marketing, operations and communications will only ever send the wrong customers away, giving us more time to work with the customers we really want!


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