Personally, I don’t think enough people in the online business world are talking about positioning.
The concept of an “avatar” or “ideal customer” is pretty well known.
And with good reason: show me someone who’s been successful, and I’ll show you someone who understands their ideal customer DEEPLY.
(If you don’t know exactly who your ideal customer is… or you’re not sure what the hell I’m talking about… contact me. Fast. You need help.)
But in my experience there is another question that is just as important… but not asked often enough.
WHY should they buy from YOU?
I don’t mean why YOU think they should buy.
I hope that part’s obvious.
They have a problem. You have a solution to that problem.
Not so fast, chuckles.
Sure… YOU can see the value. But you’re not THEM.
You’re not the one who needs to pull your credit card out, enter your details, and click that ‘BUY’ button.
So the real question is…
What do THEY need from you in order to buy from you?
The Basics: Your Offer & KLT
Well, a compelling OFFER is a great start.
One that truly solves an urgent or important problem…
And provides a HEAP of value to them.
Get that wrong and you’re dead in the water even before the starter’s gun goes off.
Don't be like Kevin. No-one trusts Kevin.
Come to think of it, no-one likes him either...
Then there’s KLT.
People buy from those they know, like and trust.
So what have you done to let them get to know you better?
To like you?
To trust you?
If you have a great offer… and people know, like and trust you… that’s powerful.
But it may not be enough to REALLY crack it.
Luckily... you have one more BIG lever available to you.
The Next Level: Positioning
This is the one that I see people struggling with most.
So what is positioning?
It is how your ideal customers think about you.
What they associate with you.
How they perceive you.
And every part of your business contributes to it.
If I was to get all corporate on your ass, positioning would be a massive topic.
Huge global brands like Coca-Cola, Apple, Nike, Disney spend bazillions on developing their positioning... and influencing it to the nth degree.
Their content... their advertising... their customer service... their products…
Even their brand colours... their packaging… the words their employees use…
Are all carefully engineered so that people will make the 'right' associations with their brands.
Choreographed to within an inch of it's life...
Over 20 years in the corporate world... I've seen it close up many times.
So if you have a multi-billion dollar brand… feel free to go down that path too. Knock yourself out.
But if you’re just starting out with your online business… forget it.
You try doing that from day one...
And you’ll end up so far down the rabbit hole that even the rabbit won’t know where you are.
Keep It Simple
If you’re starting (or have just started) a new online business…
Especially selling services or info products…
Whether as a product owner or an affiliate…
You don’t have to get all fancy-pants with positioning when you’re starting out.
You need to keep it simple.
Your offer will give you a starting point.
Are you selling a high ticket 'premium' product?
Or a low ticket 'commodity' product?
That will position you somewhere on the price-quality spectrum.
I suggest starting with just two questions.
1/ What makes you different?
This is about UNIQUENESS. Standing out.
When Ian Stanley said, “it’s better to be different than it is to be better”… this is what he was talking about.
If all you’re saying is that you’re better than your competitors… it’s very hard to get noticed.
Everyone says they’re better.
But if you have a different voice…
A different perspective…
A different approach...
Well, that’s worth them taking a look at.
2/ Why should they listen to YOU?
This is about AUTHORITY. Credibility.
About being someone who is 'qualified' to make the promises you're making.
About being someone your ideal customer believes.
Note that this is not just about having the highest authority 'score'... it's also about HOW you derive that authority.
Which will be unique to you... and further reinforce the fact that you are different from your competitors.
3/ There is no 3 ('coz we're keeping it simple)
If you can figure clear & compelling answers to those two questions…
And communicate them clearly and consistently to your audience...
Your positioning (and your business) will be light years ahead of 99% of other early-stage online business owners.
But before we finish this part, here’s a quick pro tip: the more unique you are, the easier authority becomes.
Don’t get me wrong… you MUST ALWAYS be able to back up your claims and promises. DO NOT mislead people.
But a unique positioning not only gets attention and interest… it gives people an extra... powerful... reason to buy from you.
Which takes some of the pressure off the authority side.
The Potential Roadblock: Imposter Syndrome
But sometimes it's not that easy.
Sometimes... your mind can get in the way.
Sometimes... for whatever reason... you can lose confidence in your own authority.
Losing confidence in your authority stands out like
a beacon to your prospects... and not in a good way
You may start asking questions like:
- Who am I to be doing this?
- Why would anyone buy from me?
- Why should anyone even listen to me?
That's called imposter syndrome.
It can affect even the most experienced and successful among us…
But is especially tricky for newbies.
It can CRUSH a new online business.
When starting out as a coach or info product owner it can be very easy to question yourself.
Especially when the sales aren’t coming in yet.
You know your subject matter inside out (at least I hope you do)… but maybe you’re not sure how well you can teach it.
Maybe you’re a bit over-awed by the apparent authority of some of your competitors.
Similarly, as a new affiliate marketer...
Your feed is crowded with more experienced and seemingly more successful affiliate marketers...
And you wonder why anyone would spend money with you instead of them.
Use Your Uniqueness
But here’s the thing…
No-one on earth has exactly the same background and experience that you have.
Not a single person.
You’re 100% unique.
I dunno if you're quite THIS different... but you're definitely unique!
As that absolute genius Dr. Seuss so eloquently put it:
"There is no-one alive who is youer than you."
So own it.
No matter who you are... product owner, affiliate marketer...
Give your ideal customers an opportunity to relate to you.
It will turbo charge your KLT... and, yes, your 𝘢𝘶𝘵𝘩𝘰𝘳𝘪𝘵𝘺 as well.
Try asking yourself questions like these...
- What do you have a lot of experience with?
- What have you done so many times that you know it inside out?
- What do you think you're good at?
- What have others told you that you're good at?
- If you have one superpower... what would it be?
If you take the time to REALLY think about your answers... you will identify some strengths.
How can you use those strengths to help your ideal customer?
I bet that the VAST majority of people... if they take this exercise seriously...
Will find things that make them unique. And that give them authority.
But if that's not you...
But if for some reason you do this... and come up with 𝘯𝘰𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘯𝘨 you feel you can use...
Try asking someone for help. A friend. A colleague. A coach.
You might be surprised at what comes back.
It’s Gotta Be Congruent
If you do this exercise properly... it may prompt you to go back and revisit your offer... your ideal customer... even your niche…
Which is a good thing.
Because when all those elements are aligned...
You’re not only more likely to have a powerful and compelling value proposition…
You’re more likely to be confident in it as well.
And that will shine through in your marketing and sales.
And If You’re An Affiliate Marketer…
If you're an affiliate marketer and you're struggling with this...
Remember that you have an extra advantage when it comes to authority.
Because as an affiliate…
You can use the authority of the product you’re selling.
You don’t have to be the world’s biggest expert… because you’re not the ultimate product.
So assuming it’s a high quality product (if it’s not, go back and pick another one)…
The product owner should have testimonials, success stories, etc.
Those things establish authority. Use them.
This is another reason why affiliate marketing is such an awesome 'launching pad' for online business newbies.
It makes authority easier.
So if you're a coach or info product owner... and are struggling with this... you may want to consider starting with affiliate marketing.
If you can succeed as an affiliate… your own product or service will be there for the taking.
You may know who your ideal customer is. You may even know where to find them.
But do you know WHY they should buy from you?
A great offer is a prerequisite. As is doing everything you can to get them to know, like and trust you.
But the key could be positioning.
It’s not an easy thing to nail, so f you need help with it… hit me up.