How to Stand Out from the Competition 

Module 6

Do You Have What it Takes?

A Unique Value Proposition is only going to get you so far if you don’t have fantastic services to back it up.
Your practice needs to live up to the promises of your UVP, surpassing other services on the market
and providing the client with unique benefits they can only get from you.

Review Your Research

By this time, you’ve researched your market and your competitors, and you should have a nice data compilation. It’s time to analyze this data to discover exactly what your clients want and how your competition is meeting their needs.

Make a chart and do a side-by-side comparison of your services with those of the competition. You should also examine your client acquisition data and client feedback.

When looking at this data, there are a few important questions to ask yourself:

  • Do your current services uniquely address your clients’ needs?
  • What exactly is unique about your services and sets them apart from other services available to your clients?
  • Where do your services fall short? Wherever there’s a weakness, this is an area you can focus your energies on improving.
  • How can you offer a solution to your clients that your competition isn’t offering?

Making Improvements

At this point, you’ll need to ask yourself whether you can make improvements in your services or whether you need to develop something entirely new. Your analysis of your services’ weaknesses along with customer feedback and sales figures will help you decide this. Sometimes, your current services can simply be repackaged and sold with the new UVP.

If you need to develop something new, you can use your old services’ weak points as the basis of the new product’s UVP. For example, you have a software program that a number of your customers complain is complex and counter-intuitive. After you rebuild the program so that it’s more user friendly, create a UVP that says something along the lines of, ‘You don’t have to pull out your hair figuring it out.’

When you rebuild a service, you have the option of creating a “new” service or selling the old one as “new and improved.” Both have their advantages. Try to find out from your clients which would be a better option for them.

Laser-Target Your Audience

One good way to differentiate your business is to choose a more specific sub-set of the market. Take a certain demographic of your market and laser-target it.

For example, if your products appeal to an age group that stretches from twenty-somethings to over fifty, focus on one small part of that spectrum, such as customers in their early twenties. You can focus on a demographic subset based on anything – geographical location, language, economic status, occupation, family structure, etc.

You can do this through a number of methods. For example, you can brainstorm using mind maps. Start at the center with something like, “Our Customer.” Then, branch out to each group you can clearly identify; for example, “20-somethings,” “urban dwellers,” “Spanish speakers.” Then, identify which groups are the largest segment or most likely to be good targets.

If you’re not sure how your target market breaks down, a good way to find out is through surveys. Conduct surveys online at contact points with your target market and ask questions that would reveal demographics. If you’re in touch with your market through social media, you can easily see their demographics by looking at their profiles.

Get Ideas from Established Brands

Another simple bit of research that can help you generate ideas is to look at other brands and their services and figure out what makes them unique. Pay attention to how they tailor their message to their target market.

Getting Started - Action Steps for Your Next Coffee Break


  1. Review all of the data from Modules 3-5 and answer the following:

  • What do you already offer that’s better than your competitors?
  • What aspects of your competitors’ business can you improve on?
  • What needs of your target market are not being met that you can fill?
  • What sub-sections of your target market are being ignored or not having their needs met? How are their needs different?
  • Which of the above areas take advantage of your strongest skills and resources? Which ones can you be the best at?

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