With all the businesses out there, and new ones popping up seemingly every day, competing in an oversaturated market is just part of the entrepreneur game. Luckily, this hasn’t stopped us trailblazers before, but however well-versed in your space you are, we all crave to beat out the competition and become the go-to expert in our niche.
Being in a saturated market means there’s a demand for your services, so with an intentional strategy rooted in purpose, you can easily set yourself apart from the crowd. Whether you’re thinking about entering a saturated market or are already in one, here are five easy steps to creating an impactful brand and standing out in your industry.
1. Find Your People (a.k.a Niche Down)
If you’ve owned a business for, like, five minutes you’ve probably heard “niche down” a million times—there’s a reason for that. If you feel you’re in a saturated market (which is a lot of businesses nowadays) it just means there’s a serious need for the product or service you’re providing. So, in order to stand out within your market, you’ll want to niche down just enough that you attract your ideal clients and repel clients that aren’t aligned with your larger vision.
How to niche down: Start by asking yourself: Who are the types of clients you really enjoy working with, and who you can help make the biggest impact? Once you have this established, find that sweet spot right in the middle by establishing how you connect with those clients. Those are your people.
There’s a quote, “If you are everything to everyone, then you are nothing to no one,” and if within your niche, you don’t have a specific person you help, services to solve their problem, and a unique approach to your process, you blend in with everyone else.
2. Provide Top-Notch Service From Start to Finish
This might come as a “well-duh” for you, but seriously, focusing on creating a seamless client experience from start to finish will set you apart from the competition and leave a lasting impact on your clients. Even though this might be obvious to you, it’s not to a lot of people, so if you can treat your clients like the Queen of England through every touchpoint of your client experience, they’ll be telling everyone from Boston to San Diego about how amazing you are (hello, referrals!).
Now, you don’t need to go totally crazy (make sure it’s sustainable and you’re not staying up until 4 am wrapping gifts), but implementing touchpoints such as handwritten cards, in-person/face-to-face meetings (thank goodness for Zoom), launch gifts and a pristine process, are all standout ways for you to show your clients you care and how excited you are to work with them.
3. Step Into the Spotlight
Not for nothing, but you are your own unique self, and if you really want to make an impact and stand out in a saturated market, there’s no better way to do that than by being yourself. People want to connect with people. Hands down. End of story. A majority of consumers are emotional buyers, meaning they purchase a product or service with businesses that they can connect with on a deeper level.
Whether it’s through your business or developing a personal brand, sharing your story, advice, and behind-the-scenes snippets is a way to authentically connect with your customers. There will come a point where people want to work with you because you’re you! I know you feel like there are hundreds of thousands of other people providing your service, but no one has your unique approach or personality.
What’s that quote? Oh yeah, “you are your superpower.” Hint, hint—use it.
4. Double Down on Relationships
If you haven’t started making relationships the top priority in your marketing strategy, then yesterday was the time to start.
With everyone being online all the time, we are craving real personal connections in both business and life. By focusing on building strong relationships in your local community and engaging with your audience online (like actual real conversations), you build a roster of referrals and a community of support (both for you and them).
One of my favorite ways to cultivate relationships is by reaching out to businesses that have a similar clientele and hopping on a quick call to learn more about what they offer. I’ve built some amazing relationships from just making this connection and have also gotten and referred lots of business.
5. Invest in Professional Branding
Okay, I’m not just saying this because this is what I do for a living, but I do this for a living because it’s so important in standing out in an oversaturated market and building a successful business.
Custom branding is not just a logo, it’s taking your purpose, messaging, ideal clients, and personality and translating it into beautiful, strategic visuals that connect you with your people (refer to tip #1). Your branding is what draws people in, then your marketing strategy, copywriting, and social media presence are what builds your community.
Also important: once you’ve established your branding, have a high-converting website in place. With all of the businesses that are online, if you don’t have a website that conveys your personality, is beautifully designed, and connects with your ideal client, they will move on to your competitor.
“If you haven’t started making relationships the top priority in your marketing strategy, then yesterday was the time to start.”—Olivia Austin, Founder of Current
About the Author: Olivia Austin is a brand designer and business mentor and the founder of Current. Four years ago, Olivia left her cushy 9-5 to pursue entrepreneurship with no plan, just a passion to bridge the gap between making an impact and beautiful design. With that, Current is now the go-to agency for online coaches and wellness-focused businesses to align and elevate their brands across the world. Olivia’s work is recognized as minimal and timeless, combined with each brand’s unique personality, and is deeply rooted in the difference her clients are making in the world.
Featured photo: Color Joy Stock