How to stand out in a crowded space.
You are an online entrepreneur, and it might feel like every time you turn around, you are running into another you.
There’s another virtual assistant.
There’s another bookkeeper.
There’s another health coach.
There’s another life coach.
There are so many people doing what I do.
How can I possibly stand out?
Have you ever felt this way before?
I know that I certainly did at the beginning of my business journey.
I’m going to give you 3 ways stand out online, even in what feels like a very saturated market.
But first we have to talk about the mindset.
First things first, it’s very possible that your space is not nearly as crowded as you think that it is.
It is very possible that because of what you consume online, what you interact with, the type of people and the type of content that you are commenting on is actually curating your feed full of other people that look and act just like you.
It feels like there are a million of you in the world, but it is because your social media feeds are curated based on what you are interacting on.
So, the first thing I want to do is address the mindset shift of maybe there aren’t as many people doing what you do out there as you think you just need to travel in different circles, where there aren’t a million of you.
So, first things first, maybe it’s not as saturated as you think, but let’s definitely want to give you some tangible ways to make sure that you are standing out.
#1. Think about your personal brand.
And I don’t mean brand as far as your colors or your logo, or your website or any of those other things.
I need you now that you are a business owner, a solopreneur. You have a personal brand. When somebody mentions your name, what comes up? What do people think?
Perfect example, with me, people think sales.
I’ve been talking about sales as loud as I possibly can for three years. So, inside of the circles that I travel within, it is very common to associate me with sales. When somebody says they have a sales problem, it is very common for somebody to be like, “Oh, you should go have a conversation with Ryann
What is YOUR personal brand? What do you stand for? What do you talk about a lot? What are you an expert at? Make sure that that is really clear on whichever social media platforms, or whichever networking events that you were hanging out at.
If you are hanging out in Facebook groups and your personal profile doesn’t say anything about the fact that you are a life coach … you are missing an opportunity because when I come land on that profile, I can’t tell that you’re a life coach that you’ve totally transformed people’s lives.
So your personal brand needs to be what people say about when you’re not around, but they need to be able to land on your social profiles and be able to determine it just a couple of seconds.
Who are you? What do you do? What do you stand for?
And this doesn’t always just have to be business, right? It can be personally, what do you stand for?
I have two small children. When you follow me on social media, you see pictures of my kids. You see pictures of my husband. I talk about my faith. I talk about being a Christian and a believer because that is my personal brand. That is who I am. The first thing you need to do to get visible, to stand out from all the other virtual assistants, bookkeepers, digital marketers, health coaches, life coaches, business coaches is decide:
What is your personal brand?
What do you stand for?
What do you want to be known for?
What do people say about you when you leave the room?
#2. Be a valuable person.
Say, you’re hanging out over on Instagram and somebody is looking to lose 20 pounds. That’s what you do as a business. If they’re working out and they’re checking their food and they’re trying really hard and they’ve got big goals to hit a great way to add value to that person’s life is to comment on that, to congratulate them, to tell them they’re doing a good job, to encourage them, to ask them questions about their journeys.
Interact with people. If you’ve got a great tip or a great podcast or blog or something that you can share with them, maybe it’s just a checklist you’ve created. Send that over.
“Hey, I see you’re working really hard on your weight loss goals. Here’s the checklist I created. I hope that you find a value in this.”
Say for instance, someone is posting really fantastic content on LinkedIn comment on their stuff, engage with them, ask them a question, become a person of value. Don’t overthink this because many of you were thinking, but Ryann I’m brand new to business. How could I possibly provide value to somebody exponentially more experienced than I am? It doesn’t matter. You are uniquely you and you have a way to provide value. You have a different life experience. You have a different lens. You have a different viewpoint than a lot of other people.
Don’t be afraid to use that.
So, when you’re hanging out in Facebook groups, be a valuable person, answer people’s questions. Even your competitors. Don’t worry about being pitched. Don’t worry about saying the exact right thing. Show up, answer questions. Be an interesting person. Be a person who provides value. Answers questions. Serves people no matter what.
And that’s how you stand out!
If you’re afraid to interact in Facebook groups, if you’re not answering questions, if you’re not showing up and letting people know you know what you are talking about… it’s very possible that you are leaving money on the table and you are not standing out. In fact, you are blending in with your competition. make sure that you are asking good questions. That’s another really great way to provide value. Don’t just pitch yourself, right?
Say for instance, somebody is in a Facebook group and they say, Hey, I’m looking for help with building a website. And you’re a web developer. And you’re so excited. Finally, an opportunity to connect with somebody who’s looking for me.
But instead of being person who is me, me, me, me, me, me, me, here’s the link to my calendar. Here’s my portfolio. I’m amazing… I want you to take a step back and I want you to say
“Sarah, congratulations on deciding to build or update your website. That’s such a huge step in your business. As a web developer, my favorite platform to build it is WordPress because I find it’s really great for SEO and it gets updated pretty regularly. Did you have a platform in mind in which you hope to build your website?”
Right? Do you see how much more valuable that is? How much more of a contribution you’re making to the conversation instead of just being like, here’s the link to my calendar.
#3. Become a professional problem solver.
Even if you are in the business to consumer space, solve problems, people pay to solve problems. That’s what they do. So, if you’re talking about yourself and your business, from your perspective from I’m a virtual assistant, I’m a bookkeeper or I’m a health coach, or I’m a life coach that doesn’t matter, right? Your ideal client doesn’t care. They didn’t wake up this morning looking to hire a health coach. So, if you’re just over here saying I’m a health coach, you’re blending in, you’re blending in with everybody else who’s talking about themselves. Start talking about them. What is the problem that you solve for your ideal clients? Why do they pay you?
This is such an important part of growing your business.
I want you to make sure that you are solving problems and not just checking off tasks or not just talking about yourself.
Because unfortunately we live in a world where we are trained to be focused on us, right?
There’s nothing wrong with you. I’m not shaming you or giving you a hard time or any of those things. I just want you to know that it’s really, really easy to blend in with everybody else when you’re talking about how great you are and all the wonderful things that you do and how all the stuff that you do can totally change someone’s life.
Make it about them. That is how you become a problem solver.
You’re not just managing somebody’s email list. You are giving them the way to better communicate with their audience.
See you soon!