To make a real difference in the market, whatever you send out has to matter to two parties: your business and your client. As a business, you espouse certain values based your unique value proposition to the market. If you’d like to know more about this, kindly refer to my previous post here.
Because examples really help to drive the point home, I’d like you to imagine you own a fashion business that sells beautiful wedding gowns. You’d need to define how you are better than the rest in the market in your exact field. Perhaps your collection has unique locally-made pieces and as a brand you aim to support local designers while catering to brides’ needs. Next, you’d need to establish what your clients’ real need is. Perhaps your client is mostly young middle-income women between 25 to 40 who want to look stylish at their wedding without breaking the bank. Their need therefore, is to look stylish at an affordable price. Let’s assume you’ve established that their definition of affordable and yours are the same and you can actually provide your stylish gowns at that price while making a great profit. That’s your point of intersection. Much as you also aim to support local designers, that may not be a direct point of concern for your clients and therefore it will act a bonus. Your main focus in your marketing efforts should therefore be to communicate clearly to your client that you are affordable and stylish. It does not mean that your other values and qualities as a business do not matter. In fact, they may even be very important to your target clients. In this particular example given, I’m simply making an assumption for the sake of illustration.
I hope the example has helped to drive the point home. Think very carefully about the intersection between your business values and your clients’ needs. It will make a real difference. See you next time. I’ll leave you with this video below. Enjoy.
(The feature image was taken at an EABC conference I attended in 2017.)
When we think of doing business, we mostly think about the product or service we offer to the market. That product or service in and of itself though does not cover all the value perceived by the market. Your value proposition is way more than the product or service itself. I feel that this is especially pertinent in the creative industries because customers/clients buy the value they perceive based on their unique situations in life, as well as varied tastes and preferences.
It is therefore crucial that as creative entrepreneurs, we take the time to ask ourselves what our unique value proposition is and why it even matters to our clients. Why should your client/customer care about your product or service? If you stop serving or producing, who would be affected, and would they be affected greatly or not? What unique value are you adding to people’s lives in a way that matters? When you’ve answered these questions, you are one step closer to providing value that matters.
I’d like to add that you can differentiate yourself in the market by having an especially creative product or an especially creative delivery system. If you are a designer, you can be that designer that has exceptional never-seen-before pieces at a premium price or you could be a designer that follows the trends creatively, prices as the market prices, but delivers excellently and on time even more than any other designer. I recently read Good to Great by Jim Collins, an American researcher. One of the things he advises in the book is to figure out what you can be the best at in your market, and go for it tenaciously with laser focus. That will require that you carefully look at your strengths and perhaps even ask other people that know you or your business well, to help you define what you do exceptionally better at than other people.
Vusi Thembekwayo, an established entrepreneur and global speaker who hails from South Africa, says you can either be cheaper, better or faster to have a real edge in the market. That’s something for you to think about.
I’ll close this post by sharing a bonus treat. I did a YouTube series about creating value that matters and attached here is the very first episode. Enjoy and see you again, soon.
(The feature image is from my fashion brand The House of KEA during the CDEA bootcamp in 2017. The model is the beautiful Angela Kilusungu.)
About two months ago I started a YouTube channel. First off, I am glad I simply started. Sometimes we wait to be perfect for too long and realise later that perfection never comes. I am happy that I am growing. I am on a journey to being more regular by doing series and posting a video per week. Some of the lessons I have learnt so far are:
Simply start and grow along the way.
In the beginning, you’d rather do short videos of not more than six minutes because you are gaining an audience and growing into your voice. For my first video that was about nine minutes long, the average watch time was about two minutes. I noticed that from the analytics, and also got advice from a mentor that shorter is better as I learn to create better and more engaging content.
Celebrate every milestone. I can confidently report that I have 37 subscribers after posting two videos. Also, My next video goes up in a few hours so don’t miss it this Saturday. I will provide a link right after the first video of my current series(coming up) which I know you will enjoy.
You grow in practice. I know that I had the latent potential to be a good speaker in front of camera but I would’ve never known that if I didn’t simply jump and start practising. I am becoming more confident in front of the camera. I still have to do lots of takes but that’s okay because the growth is evident. TED, here we come!
Create a channel about something you are passionate about. I love, love, love my channel because I love, love, love the reasons behind the channel, which are all purpose-driven in my mission to nurture and grow creatives as I grow too.
IT’S ABOUT THE PEOPLE. Every single like, comment, share, retweet, subscriber represents a human being who truly believes in me and wants to hear what I have to say or contribute in some way to my content. I HOPE TO NEVER EVER GET LOST IN THE STATISTICS. IT IS ABOUT PEOPLE, ALWAYS! I do not take the people for granted.
On that note, how about we watch a video?
For a link to my channel, click here. While I wait for you there, this video is a gift for reading to the end. See you soon on these streets. I’m signing out with love as always. Until next time.