I recently ran across a website Simply Noise ; it’s a noise generator. I find it helps with concentration when I am working. It is especially helpful for those who live with tinnitus (ringing in your ears). So far, Brown/Oscillating is my favorite. But it got me thinking about how some businesses find ways to be noticed, increase market share, and grow!, while many of their competitors, offering very similar products or services remain grouped together as well…simply noise. You could also say they’ve fallen into ‘The Pit of Mediocrity’
If a business is Simply Noise, there is nothing that separates it from other competing businesses. It’s two identical Hot Dog stands on opposite sides of the street and there is no reason to go to one over the other. They both may be spending money on flyers, coupons, websites, maybe even radio and TV, but their messages are similar, their products are similar and at the end of the day they have two identical Hot Dog stands.
But you don’t have to be Simply Noise…! I read a great article this past week about how a local construction company has thrived over the last few years. They choose to take a different approach than their competitors with a number of specific action steps including:
- Proactively reducing debt
- Performing SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) analysis
- Researching revenue growth options
- Becoming strategic with their goals and expectations
- Participating in an advisory board
- Getting everyone on the same page (which includes sharing the Mission, Vision, and Strategic Plan within the company).
It was good stuff. When your passion is building successful businesses, it is music to one’s ears.
In this case, a leadership decision had clearly been made. For the construction business to survive in a down market something had to change. Being simply another construction company wasn’t a path for success.
Sometimes it is the little things that separate businesses from the pack. One of the items listed was very simple, yet profound. It was something every business should be able to do with just a little effort. It was this;
“When asked, every associate should, without hesitation, have a clear and concise “20 second elevator speech” about their firm.”
Every associate, not just the management team or the sales people, but every employee from the lowest entry level position on up can deliver this message on cue.
If 1,000 employees (let’s say 50 people across 20 different industries) were polled across the metro area, I wonder how many would be prepared to answer that question with an answer that would make them standout from any other business providing a similar product or service? How many responses would be simply noise: “We mow grass”, “We sell insurance”, “We’re plumbers”, “We’re a dentist office” verses something that would be notable, memorable, and make a consistent, impactful statement about the company?
What would your employees & co-workers say? Maybe it is time to take your own poll? Is your message simply noise? Are you being heard? Please share your thoughts in the space below.
Chris Steinlage Kansas City Business Coach