5 steps to make your start-up stand out from the crowd
The pursuit of almost every business is standing out from the crowd. It’s what generates decisions and motivates innovation. With everyone trying to achieve the same thing though, how do you ensure you are getting noticed? Here are five steps to help guarantee individuality.
Seize every stimulus
The first step is establishing a business name, logo, strap line, target audience etc. that will get you noticed. These bright ideas don’t come effortlessly, but when they do, grab them with both hands. There will inevitably be someone else waiting for that very idea if you don’t. Think of the business world as a sushi conveyor belt: if you miss your chance to grab that sought-after sashimi, there’s another hungry diner who won’t!
Don’t disregard ‘different’
Often, it’s the most obscure ideas and notions that become the most memorable and successful: contactless payment, a virtual music library, a watch that can control, well, almost everything. They all seemed ‘out there’, ‘won’t catch on’ ideas at first, but fast forward a few years and they’re as commonplace as tea and toast. It’s about being brave enough to take risks, see past rationality, and enforce rule-breaking. If you listen too intently to your peers’ words of warning, you will be held back from reaching your full potential.
Reflect your personality
Every decision you make needs to be centred on the personality and intentions of your business. With these concepts at the heart of every aspect – be it the service you offer or your logo – your company identity will naturally begin to take shape and set you apart from others. Consistency, although it might sound like an oxymoron, is key to uniqueness. Breaking the mould as a result of staying true to yourself is not a bad thing; in the words of Carly Simon, ‘nobody does it better.’
Focus on improvement
Not every business idea is unique in its offering – and that’s fine. In fact, some of the most successful companies in the world weren’t the first of their kind. Take Google for example. They weren’t the first search engine, but they are now the most popular. If you’re in a similar situation, there’s an argument to say your energies are better spent on improving, rather than innovating. Stand out by offering the ‘same but better’ – that is, your existing product or service, but a more refined and considered version. Stick to what you know and build upon that instead of constantly seeking and striving for (perhaps non-existent) uniqueness.
Inspiration is everywhere
It’s often said that inspiration breeds motivation. That being around brilliant people encourages you in turn to be that little bit more brilliant, and it’s undoubtedly true. For that reason, it pays to surround yourself with businesses and entrepreneurs who inspire you. Follow them on Twitter, take a look at their Instagram account, read their blog – whatever you do it, immerse yourself in their world. Use them as your source of creativity and put your own spin on their ideas. Networking also is another great way to evoke inspiration, so keep your diary full and the ideas will flow – especially if you work on your own. You’ll find inspiration often pops up when you least expect it.