“Do you really want everyone to like you?” That’s what I told my teenagers when they were feeling the need to cave into peer pressure. Sometimes trying to fit in costs you your true identity. It’s the same for small businesses. Sometimes we try to cover too much territory. Our true power lies in what we’re good at. You’ve earned the right to call yourself an expert–by hard work, dedication, and doing one thing well.
If you haven’t honed in on your area of expertise, ask yourself:
What makes my company unique?
If I had to only do one thing, sell one item, what would it be?
If I had to let go of one line of service or product, what would it be?
What do I do/sell that no one else does? (Or very few)
What services do I offer that fills a real need or void?
If someone introduced me/my company at a party, what would they say?
What other business is the most like mine?
Does my website really state your expertise?
Do my keywords reflect my products or services accurately–or are they only close but not spot on?
What segment of the market have I not quite tapped into yet?
What do I enjoy doing the most? What’s easy for me?
Once you answer a few of these questions, then make sure you input these changes into your online marketing, local marketing, and traditional marketing plans. What good does it do to specialize and then not let people know what you’re good at!
Ways to promote your expertise:
Do a news release (also known as a press release)
Start a separate website that focuses on your expertise–and list is as a separate page on your main site. Besure to list your new site on the various directories. Go to OpenDirectory.com and register your site. Now that you’ve learned a thing or two about websites and SEO strategies, implement your knowledge.
Begin to blog about your expertise–what you have to offer, how you got to be good at this one area, and focus on how you can help others.
Change or add pertinent keywords and keyword phrases
Pitch yourself to a radio show. Start using your voice and stating that you’re an expert in a given field. Don’t consider it arrogant. If you’re really good at something, then it’s a service to offer your advice and direction to others–as long as it’s presented in a way that’s helpful.
Do a search on your area of expertise and check out the competition. You should have less now that you’ve narrowed your focus. What are they doing right? How can you tweek your site to offer something slightly different?
Mention your expertise when it’s appropriate on your social media–especially in your profiles on LinkedIn and Facebook.
Author Marcus Buckingham reminds us in his book, Now, Discover Your Strengths, is that we shouldn’t try to be good at everything. Our brains are even hardwired at birth to begin to pull away from the less strong connections, and that our neurons bundle around one strong cord–that’s how we begin to specialize–and why some of us can play the piano and others can whiz through calculus. By fleshing out and then promoting your expertise, you begin to define your small business and discover your true market.