Separate yourself from the clutter. It sounds simple, yet so many companies are incapable of doing it successfully.
My favorite bar is my favorite bar because nobody goes there. I can go typically at any point during the week and have virtually no wait for a drink and my pick of where I’d like to sit. It’s a nice bar with a solid layout, good bartenders, and great music. I like that it is never crowded, but I suspect the owner feels differently.
Nearly every other bar located in this particular strip of bars is always packed. One plays eighties music. One is country/western with a huge dance floor. Another has a bar on the roof and good drink specials. There’s one that is just a shot bar. Another mixes funny clips of Dave Chapelle, SNL, Family Guy, etc on numerous screens. The point is they all have something that separates them, makes them unique and enables them to appeal to a certain crowd, a loyal crowd.
If you are a right-handed pitcher that throws 88-92 with a decent breaking pitch and moderate change up, you are 1 in 10,000. That’s why some guys drop their arm slot and throw side-armed or submarine. It is why bloggers pick specific niches, and why others refuse to comment on their blogs, or why some utilize only video. It is why some write short posts when others write long hashed out, well researched posts with extensive case studies.
It astounds me that so many businesses, people, bloggers do not understand that there lost in the clutter for a reason, and that it is primarily their own fault. There’s not much room for those that aren’t the best at what they’re talking about.
I know what you’re thinking. Perhaps it is time for me to re-evaluate my own blog and make sure that I am providing unique content and solid value. I would like to think I am (providing both), in spite of the fact that I might need to take some time and redefine my niche, as well as my intentions.
I’d like to the best one day, but for now this blog is as much for me as it is for you. This is changing, but right now it’s a resource that enables me to keep my finger on the pulse of the things I am passionate about (generation y, social media, entrepreneurship, relationship marketing). It also allows me to meet, connect with and have conversations with some really phenomenal people.
So what about you? Are you lost in the clutter? What are some things you can do to make your company stand out? To make yourself stand out in the blogosphere? Please share your experiences!
UPDATE 9/1/08: Chris Brogan and Jeremiah Owyang both have some recent posts about reducing the noise, standing out, and getting noticed. If you enjoyed this topic and want some specific approaches, I encourage you to check out their posts.