What is your Business Personality?
When Shea and I were new in our event planning business we did what everyone else does. We posted some crappy website with a few pictures of our work and bought some ads. And it was a crappy site – I mean CRAP! It in no way reflected who we were.
And how did I come up with this brilliantly ridiculous site? Well let me share my brilliance with you – I did just what everyone else does. I looked at a bunch of websites from other event planners and I went “That one’s pretty. I want one that looks like that!” (Yes, I am currently hanging my head in embarrassed shame as I think back.)
Oh don’t shake your head. You know this describes you too!
I looked at hundreds of sites and used the same basic structure and terminology that every other planner used – Full Service Planning, Day Of Coordinator, Package, Bridal Emergency Kit – I used all the right words. It was what everyone else was saying so it must be right!
In our first month in business I was reading a book (I do that a lot) and something that I read struck me like a ton of bricks. To paraphrase, the author has said something to the effect of:
“If you are copying someone else in business, you are taking a huge risk on a terrible assumption. You are assuming that they know what the hell they’re doing in business, when the cold hard truth is that they probably did just what you did – copied someone else.”
I had a full on “WTF” moment.
Man that was some powerful truth! I couldn’t go on reading. I stopped right there and started from scratch.
By the way – I am not exaggerating about this. You can ask Shea. I literally shut that book and slammed it down on the table. I paced and paced around the house as I was truly absorbing this enormous concept. I stayed up way too late and did not sleep well for days. I was anxious and irritable. Some might even go so far as to say that I was not so nice to be around. (Some might say that I was a total Bitch to be around – that would be unwise of them – but even still, they might say it.) I could barely function as I realized that I had cheated my family out of business that was rightfully mine by being so stupid as to simply try to “fit in” with what everyone else was doing. I could not go on in business until I had fixed this!
I had to start over – from scratch!
I started furiously rewriting everything that I had written – in my own words. The way that I would really talk to people. And not in “industry speak”. I let my own personality shine in my website.
Shea and I went against industry norms and put a giant picture of ourselves on the front page of our website, not a happy laughing bride, as is the norm for wedding related businesses.
We were advised against this. “Who is going to buy from you if they don’t see pictures of your work right away”, they said. “They want to see smiling brides”, they said.
(They were wrong. We did over $100,000 in our first year!)
What I realized that day was that people were buying US – not a glossy 8×10 of a couple they’ve never met!
That’s right – they’re buying YOU too! Not your flowers. Not your photography. But YOU! If they can easily relate to you then you are already ahead of your competition.
From that moment on we focused on us – our personality, the way we are, what we love, who we love working with.
This is business personality!
And guess what??
We started getting bookings from the kind of people that we do our best work with – people like us! And I would wager that you do your best work for people that are like you – whatever that may be. Because people like to feel connected. And what people really connect most with is people just like them. There are a hundred florists out there – but how many tattoo loving biker babes that specialize in weddings for Harley owners are there? I’d bet, not many! And I’d bet that if you put yourself out there with what you really love and where your strengths really are that you will start attracting that client – and have a hell of a lot more fun in life.
Are you married for a second time? Maybe you would better relate to those that found their soul mate the second time around – so write about it in your blog posts!
Are your pampered pooches the center of your little world? Maybe you should include pictures of them and you together on your “About Us” page. Or start bringing them into the office. Trust me, people that are pet lovers will LOVE YOU!
Are you a bouncy little sorority girl? That still hasn’t quite moved on from those Sorority girl days? Great! Tell me about it! Show me pics of you with your girls – doing volunteer work – or whatever it is that you silly girls do.
And guess what? People pay more for a niche product (or niche company)!
Bottom Line – you need to set yourself apart to really shine in this industry – Hell, in this world! So start doing it.
Today’s exercise –
1.) Go look at the website of your closest 5 competitors
2.) Write down the phrases that you see repeated in their sites
3.) Look at your own website.
4.) Remove and change anything that is on your website that is repeated on your competitor’s sites!
Oh, it’s gonna hurt! But you’ll be more YOU and people are buying YOU!
In the words of the beloved Dr Suess, “Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.”
Want to learn how to show a little leg (business personality) in your business?? Sign up for our FREE 4 step e-course HERE and we’ll email it directly to you. Email – It’s the miracle of modern technology at work. 🙂