What to consider when positioning your business for success
Positioning a business for a new digital age, for lead generation and growth, for expertise, for leadership, (for longevity!)—is something that plays on the minds of entrepreneurs and business owners daily. No one knows this better than expert business advisor, David C. Baker.
"Baker appeared on the webcast, “Unleashed”, an Alberta-based leadership series featuring business experts and best-selling authors designed to help business leaders lead hosted by Results. CEO, Jeff Tetz. In Episode 6, Season 3 , " Positioning your company ahead of the competition," Baker shares how to get intentional when positioning your business."
Tetz believes that when we work outside our expertise, we stray from our position as a business. “During the pandemic, there has been a tendency to feel desperate and take whatever work comes our way, or launch services that pay, but are not connected to the core of what makes us unique,” explains Tetz. “Baker has helped us stay the course.”
What do we need to consider when positioning our business?
1. Be intentional about how you spend your expertise.
Baker explains there is a difference between positioning as a service, and positioning expertise. “A service can have a finite price in a field of competitors, but you enable a higher price premium when it’s hard to find a person/company suitable to replace you/your business.”
Work towards making your company’s expertise non-interchangeable with any other service, he advises. “Pass by any neighbourhood—the availability of services is rampant—drycleaners, pizza joint, gas station…etc. We have choices. What makes one company survive over another is that one thing you can offer that no one else can.”
Tetz explains, to support his own clients, he and his team build data-based tools that lead to repeatable processes. “Those tools translate into significant gains in performance, proficient hiring processes, a sustainable vision and culture, and a leadership pipeline, among many benefits.”
2. Figure out who is your best kind of client.
“Some of the hard choices we have had to make, and we have seen our clients make when positioning for success are saying no to easy revenue, saying no to people that they love but shouldn’t work with, and saying no to inventing a problem that doesn’t exist,” explains Tetz.
Baker suggests, ask yourself with which clients am I most engaged? What clients keep coming back to me? When I hear innovative ideas and opinions coming from my team, what are they saying? Which way do they lean?
Baker also advises, work with clients with whom you have direct access to the decision maker. “You don’t necessarily want to break in a new client. Convincing people of what they need and attempting to change their orientation can be an exhausting way to work.”
One of the things that really resonated with Tetz in this presentation was Baker’s suggestion to ensure a client is big enough to take advantage of your expertise. “For Results., it is the same amount of work to provide value to 40-person company and a 400-person company, and we think about where our work can have the most impact,” says Tetz.
3. Articulate your position well, and the right clients will find you.
A succinct message about what you provide separates out the people who are not a fit from the people who are. For example, in one sentence on their website, Incite Strategy tells us who they work with and what they provide:
“Incite works with privately held business-to-business companies, established non-profits, and leading public interest organizations seeking a strategic and relationship approach to growth, brand and communications.”
Who. What. How. That’s how a potential client can know if they are a fit for your expertise.
Over the past year, Baker has shared some invaluable knowledge relating to marketing strategy, performance metrics, and managing human resources during the pandemic. Find the links here.
One thing that continues to prove true for Tetz, when it comes to positioning, is there is a competitive advantage in deep thinking. “It’s important to devote time to thinking about what you are passionate about, what are you curious about, and what makes you non-interchangeable as a company.”