Is it just me or does competition have a bad rap?
Maybe you picture girl-on-girl cat fights, claws (polished, of course), and nasty comments, whenever you hear the word.
I adore competition …
And gladly sharpen my claws to compete with the best of the best.
When I went full-time in my business in 2011, I didn’t have a huge email list (it was, like, 1500 people … ).
I was competing with people like Marie Forleo, Danielle LaPorte, Gabby Bernstein, etc.
: Women who had done the work.
: Women who had put in the hours.
: Women who had waaaaay bigger lists.
So whenever I was chatting with a potential client during my Free 15-Minute Business Whippings (my version of a complimentary consult), I’d often hear that my potential client was trying to decide between my program and a bigger name.
It was frustrating, at first.
No. It was more than frustrating. It was terrifying.
How could little ol’ me compete with these women who were sooo much more experienced than me? And had HUGE followings?
I had to figure this out.
It took me 7 years to transition out of commercial real estate – not to mention the tens of thousands of dollars I’d invested to get my business going.
There was NO WAY I was going back. I could not let myself fail.
So I got out my whip and gave myself a business whipping with this one question …
“Why would someone want to work with me vs. signing up for [INSERT NAME OF PROGRAM].
What did I have in spades that they didn’t have?”
And you know what it was?
I had time.
Lots of time to notice what makes my clients unique – and then help them leverage their talent in the marketplace.
Take Sarah Steenland, the cartoonist, for instance…
When Sarah and I started working together in 2013, I noticed that not only was she a skilled illustrator, but she was also hi·lar·i·ous.
But Sarah didn’t get just how brilliant she was. And much to my horror, she was calling her artful illustrations ‘doodles.’
I immediately put a stop to that.
And with some additional guidance, Sarah started OWNING & LEVERAGING her brilliance.
And of course, that put her on the fast track to success and partnerships with companies like Johnson & Johnson.
Sarah sent me this email a few days ago:
“Just want to send you a message of gratitude for your encouragement and support you gave me way back, when I was getting started.
I’m doing cartoons and animations for large brands like Johnson & Johnson, and getting paid good money.
I wouldn’t be where I am now if it wasn’t for your influence with changing how I Value the work I do.
I think I’m even at the stage of putting up my prices because of the demand for my work.”
You go, girl!
Are you ready for BIG results in your business?
Then make competition your (haute) new, go-to business strategy. Here’s some rules to get you started.
THE RULES OF ELEGANT COMPETITION
1. Start by picking a BIG-name competitor. Go really big. Like, the APPLE of your industry.
2. Once you pick your competitor, ask yourself this ONE question: What could I do that they can’t do?
3. Then COMMIT. And DO IT. Over and over and over again … until you see results.
Could you …
Out-network your competition by showing up to as many events as possible and building real relationships?
Out-smart your competition by coming up with clever experiments, testing them, and sharing the results with your community?
Out-create your competition by posting daily illustrations on Instagram and creating videos from illustrations for SnapChat or YouTube.
Out-play your competition by creating phenomenal experiences for customers, and focusing on every single detail?
Your answer doesn’t have to be perfect. Or complicated. You just gotta start somewhere.
May the best fancy lady win.