What Makes You Unique BIGG Success Image

What Makes You Unique

What Makes You Unique BIGG Success Image

We share why you need to know what makes you unique to stand out today. Plus, Mary-Lynn bleeps out George several times in this BIGG Success Show Podcast. Click play and/or read.

Why do you need to know what makes you unique?

We heard a great quote recently: The problem with following the herd is you end up wading through all the crap they left behind.

Most people want to be outstanding in their field. However, many are just out…standing in the field, walking through all the crap.

The herd mentality comes to us naturally. As we developed – going from puberty to adolescence, the desire to “fit in” kicks into overdrive.

We don’t want to be different. We don’t want to look different. We don’t want to stand out. We want to be part of the herd.

And that worked just fine for quite some time. It helped us find and develop our social network – not in the Facebook or LinkedIn sense – but in terms of human connection.

But then the world changed…

Globalization. The Great Recession. The social web. Any one of these forces on its own would have been disruptive. Combined, they have been like the perfect storm.

Now, we live in a crowded and cluttered world. Today, NOT standing out is the #1 cause of failure.

It’s time to ask some tough questions.
Stated crudely, if you’re just like everyone else:

  • Why should anyone hire you, be it an employer or a customer, instead of someone else? Nobody wants to be treated like a number. Yet so many people position themselves as just a number, one of many.In cases like this, couldn’t a prospective employer or customer just throw darts at a board to make their choice?
  • Why should they keep you on their payroll or keep doing business with you? Many people turn themselves into commodities. And you know what happens with commodities? Decision-makers gravitate to the cheapest source of supply.What’s the net result? Most people are just happy to keep their job, to keep their customers. Even though they aren’t making the money they deserve, they don’t see any alternatives other than to just keep grinding it out.

But there is an answer…

Today, building your brand is no longer an option, be it your personal brand or your business brand. Business owners need both.

It starts by discovering how unique you are:
You were put on this earth to do something BIGG. You remain here because your mission isn’t yet complete.

What Makes You Unique #1: Your Genetic Make-Up

No other person in the world has the exact same code as you. For every inherent disadvantage, you were given a greater and more significant advantage. You, and only you, have a unique talent to share.

What Makes You Unique #2: Your Set of Experiences

No other human being has seen everything you have seen, heard everything you have heard, touched everything you have touched, smelled everything you have smelled, or tasted everything you have tasted. Some of your experiences have made you unhappy. Others have brought joy. You, and only you, can draw upon these personal experiences.

What Makes You Unique #3: Your Point-of-View

No other person in the world thinks about things exactly like you. They can’t! You are called upon to test your perceptions against objective reality. You, and only you, form your opinions and these opinions can change the world if you choose.

You, and only you, can accomplish that one thing that you are here to accomplish. We’re all counting on you to do it!

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/biggsuccess/00899-082714.mp3

Bootstrap Marketing: Unknown Entrepreneur Defeats Established Competitor

Bootstrap Marketing-David vs Goliath

Bootstrap marketing helped an unknown entrepreneur pull off one of the biggest political upsets in history. Click PLAY to hear George & Mary-Lynn share the story and lessons for any business and brand on the BIGG Success Show Podcast.

Bootstrap marketing™ is generating outsized results with limited resources. We recently saw it in action in, of all places, an election.

But this is not a story about politics. It shows David can still beat Goliath.

Before we get started, one quick note: We’re not taking sides. We’re not endorsing anybody. We’re not commenting on the results. We’re simply offering up some lessons that we entrepreneurs can take away from it.

Bootstrap Marketing Leads to Victory

As you may know, political novice Dave Brat defeated well-known House Majority Leader Eric Cantor. Not by a little bit. By a lot.

The Washington Post called it one of the biggest political upsets of all time. How much of an upset? No sitting Majority Leader has ever lost in a primary.

The unknown entrepreneur used bootstrap marketing to defeat his much more established, well-known competitor. Let’s dissect this story to find out how.

Bootstrap Marketing Lesson 1: Money isn’t everything

Brat spent $122,793 during the race while Cantor laid out $5,026,626, according to Open Secrets. In fact, the New York Times reports that Cantor’s campaign spent $168,637 on steak dinners alone – more than Brat spent in total!

Stated differently, Cantor spent nearly $41 for every $1 Brat spent. Yet Brat won.

Money isn’t everything. Think bootstrap marketing to find ways to outmaneuver bigger spending competitors.

Bootstrap Marketing Lesson 2: It pays to play to the media

Brat got interviewed by top conservative radio hosts. It was the kind of media exposure he couldn’t afford. Yet it’s also the kind of media money can’t buy. So it means more than advertising.

The media business is more fragmented today than ever. They’re hungry for great storylines. They have an audience they need to keep tuned in.

What do people want or need to know about your product or service?

Let’s take a tough example – does a plumber have anything to say of interest to the media and their audience? Sure, a plumber could talk about home safety, the latest technology, etc.

Think bootstrap marketing to craft a media-worthy topic. Then pitch it to media outlets in your area to start.

Bootstrap Marketing Lesson 3: Look for neglected customers

On the night of the election, Cantor wasn’t in his district. He was in Washington D.C. People felt he was more interested in national politics than the local scene.

As a bootstrap marketing practitioner, keep your ear to the ground. People talk about their experiences – especially their bad ones.

Sometimes the best marketing isn’t what you do. It’s what your competitor doesn’t do.

Bootstrap Marketing Lesson 4: Craft a message which drives people to act

Inside the D.C. Beltway, Cantor was a shoe-in. They weren’t giving the race much attention. No one, it seemed, expected the results to be close.

And they weren’t. But not in the way the political insiders thoughts. Brat received 56% of the vote while Cantor only got 44% – a thumping which rarely seen by incumbents. Source: NPR

He highlighted three key issues when he announced his candidacy: (1) fix the economy, (2) restore the checks-and-balances stated in the Constitution, and (3) end crony capitalism in Washington. Source: Huffington Post

Simple. Concise. Invigorating – at least to his target market. Voter turnout was up in the district 28% over 2012 – a Presidential election year. Unheard of! Source: Washington Post

How can you craft a message which turns prospects into customers? Do something most people in business don’t: talk with your customers! You can’t afford not to do this when you’re in bootstrap marketing mode.

Find out what they were thinking as they moved along the buyer’s journey. Get inside their heads so you know what sparked them to vote with their dollars.

Bootstrap Marketing Lesson 5: Make your brand a conduit for expression

Your brand is an expression of you. But it becomes so much more when it becomes an outlet for others to make a statement.

People vote for and against simultaneously. For supporters, a vote for Brat was a vote for a new beginning. It was also a vote against the Washington establishment.

The same is true in business. A vote for Pepsi is a vote against Coke. A vote for Apple is a vote against Android.

Bootstrap marketing necessitates creating connections. Your customers – current and future – want to connect with a concept, a feeling, a cause, and/or a community.

Your brand is a conduit – connect them so they can express themselves and you’ll be a BIGG success!

Why are you connected with your favorite brand?

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/biggsuccess/00897-061614.mp3

Image from Wikimedia

bad critique-BIGG Success

How to Handle a Bad Critique

bad critique-BIGG Success

A bad critique can put a BIGG Goal-Getters into a bad mood fast. We are perfectionists at heart. We strive to do our best every day and put thought and heart into the work that we do. It’s personal for us. It’s a reflection of our work ethic.

What’s worse than being told we’ve done something wrong – is being told about it with destructive criticism rather than constructive criticism.

Listen to us share today’s tips on The BIGG Success Show Podcast, and get a bonus tip that’s not here on the blog. Click PLAY.

The Bad Critique

BIGG Goal-Getters agonize over having to critique someone. They write it out, practice saying it out loud, and try not to be too negative while getting a point across. So it stings quite a bit when you aren’t treated in the same manor.

We’ve all experienced the boss who just rips you a new one, or who makes one mistake seem like that’s the scope of your entire work history. It’s easy to feel defeated, and even worry that your standing in the company just got knocked down a few rungs.

The Best Way to React to a Bad Critique

You can’t let a bad critique keep you down. Here are some things you can do in response.

• Don’t respond when you’re upset! You’ll only say things you’ll regret. You’ve never burned bridges so don’t start now.

• If you believe the criticism is wrong, carefully and calmly debate why you think it is.

• Resist the urge to over please your critic. Fix the issue, let the appropriate person know, and move on.

• Don’t let your critic’s voice get into your head. It’ll just make you nervous and more likely to make another mistake.

• Try not to take it personally. You are you. Your work is your work. There is a separation.

• Consider the source. Not everyone cares as much as you to handle things the right way. Realize your critic has a lot to learn.

• Talk to someone you trust. Get out your frustration and say the things to them you’d never say in a professional setting.

Unfortunately, there are people who are put in leadership positions that have no idea how to be a true leader. You can’t control how this person will behave towards you in the future, so focus on what you can control…your reaction. It leads to BIGG Success! How about you? What suggestions do you have to offer about reacting to a bad critique? Leave a comment below.

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/biggsuccess/00892-022614.mp3

Image from stock.xchng

Alex Ruggieri a personal brand interview on BIGG Success

How a Local Broker Built His Personal Brand

Alex Ruggieri a personal brand interview on BIGG Success

Think you need to tell your own story to build a personal brand? George & Mary-Lynn talk with a guy who’s built a local and national name, by helping others tell their stories. Click PLAY to learn how he did it.

Alex Ruggieri is a highly-recognized real estate broker and Senior Advisor for Sperry Van Ness. But he’s also a media mogul, with a radio show called Central Illinois Business; a TV segment, Business Insider on WCIA Channel 3, and the Commercial Connections Podcast for the National Association of REALTORS®

A Personal Brand is Born

When starting out as a broker, Alex didn’t have the money to spend on advertising to help him stand out from all of his competition. So he asked himself this question: “What do I have that I can give that would provide value to others that isn’t money?”

He thought about his strengths and what he loved to do.

What he came up with has made him a thought leader in his industry at both the local and national level….

A Personal Brand Grows

As a young man, Alex felt fortunate to be introduced to business people in the Champaign-Urbana, Illinois community whom he considered mentors. People he still looks up to today. He noticed no one was telling their stories.

Alex approached a TV station to pitch an idea for a program that would showcase the stories of the business people in the community. He got the green light to host the show! From there, a local radio station asked him to do the same kind of program for them. That station happened to also own the city newspaper.

Alex was getting exposure everywhere by giving his time to create compelling content for local media outlets. Alex also loved the fact that he was able to give back to the business community by giving them an outlet to to share what they do.

Alex’s media work in his hometown caught the attention of the National Association of REALTORS®, who asked if he’d host their national podcast!

As he says, “If you give enough…the universe will take care of you.”

Alex gets business by doing what he loves…talking about business. Find what you’re passionate about, and use it to build your personal brand. It leads to BIGG Success.

More Personal Brand Building Advice

Become a free member of our Entreprenurturing™ Center to hear our extended discussion with Alex where you’ll also learn:

  • How his work in media has helped his bottom line
  • His “Jay Leno Theory” and how it can work for you
  • His advice on how to find that one thing that can elevate your brand

Plus, Alex shares the BIGG defining moment that pushed him towards the work ethic he still uses today.

Just sign up for our free download to get instant access.

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/biggsuccess/00888-010914.mp3

Find Your Intersection for BIGG Success

Find Your Intersection to Stand Out

Find Your Intersection for BIGG Success

Differentiation is so important in today’s marketing environment. Listen as George & Mary-Lynn help you find your intersection to enhance your brand. Click play to hear The BIGG Success Show Podcast (Duration 7:25)

At BIGG Success, we help people live life on their own terms to achieve personal, professional, and financial freedom.

We do that with online and offline coaching and consulting, e-learning products, the Entreprenurturing Center, our blog, podcast, and radio show.

We’re in the top 1% of all business podcasts in iTunes with The BIGG Success Show. We also have a nationally syndicated radio show – a one-minute feature called BIGG Success in a Minute which will soon will be on over 1,000 radio streams with access to 50 million listeners.

We’ve worked with chambers of commerce, and community banks to help their small business customers on everything from finance to marketing.

As a result of our success in building a brand from scratch, one of our coaches suggested we help other people do the same. That was a great suggestion!

Now we’re focusing on helping people and businesses build a brand that sells.

We’re working with existing businesses and start ups – who are establishing a brand or re-branding. In fact, our branding program was added to our University’s Research Park, (ranked by Forbes as one of the top 10 in the country) to help businesses in their I-Start program.

How to Find Your Intersection

Differentiation is so important in today’s marketing environment, which is why it’s important to find your intersection to enhance your personal and professional brands.

An intersection is simply how your interests and what you do, gives you something that’s unique in the marketplace.

We’ll share our personal intersections, along with the intersection for BIGG Success. We encourage you to share yours too! Leave a comment below or email us.

[Mary-Lynn]

For 25 years, I had a brand: Radio DJ. I’ve worked on the air in Illinois in Lincoln, Bloomington, Peoria, Champaign, and Chicago. So when I first left the only profession I’d known back in 2007, I felt a bit lost. I didn’t know how to explain what I was now, and people still thought I was on the radio! I couldn’t escape my identity.

Then one day, when I was lamenting to George, about not being a broadcaster anymore…and it hit me. I was defining myself too narrowly. I was defining myself as a radio broadcaster. But through our blog, podcast, social media posts, business articles, newsletters and interviews…I was still broadcasting!

Once I broadened my definition, I was able embrace my past profession and see my intersection: radio broadcaster and social media entrepreneur. I have a unique understanding of both traditional media and new media. This enables me to help people learn how to broadcast their message in whatever format makes sense for them – and – broadcasting a good message is essential to having a successful business.

[George]

I don’t ever remember a time in my life when I didn’t want to own a business. In fact, some people introduce me as the man who’s never had a job! I’ve had my own businesses for years.

My intersection, I believe, has become that I have this combination of real-world experience along with actual academic teaching. I’ve done both of them for a long period of time…practicing in the real world while staying in touch with all the academic theories.

What’s fun about that is it helps me understand – with the businesses we work with and our own – how we connect strategy to everyting we do. How the money, the marketing, and everything has to flow to maximize your results.

[BIGG Success]

Our company is the intersection of life and entrepreneurship. We say that even if you don’t want to own your own business, you still have to think like an entrepreneur.

In work: between the great recession and global competition, everyone needs to be nimble and ready to shift towards opportunity. Entrepreneurs understand how to deal with uncertainty, so the ability to think like one is an advantage.

In life: To live life on your own terms, you have to know what those terms are, then do whatever it takes to make it happen. There’s sacrifice in any decision. Maybe you don’t take a promotion because you want more time at home. Maybe you do start a business to be able to work from home.

Think about your intersections. Those places where your interests and what you do meet. It’s important because:

  • It gives your brand meaning
  • It opens new doors
  • It gives you leverage
  • It puts you in touch with more people
  • It helps you stand out

It leads to BIGG Success!

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/biggsuccess/00885-120313.mp3

Image in this post from stock.xchng