It’s so easy to think that the small business market is saturated with knitting and crochet designers and tech editors.
You may think that there’s no point to either starting your dream business, or to working hard on your established business, when there are so many people doing the same thing.
It’s really easy to let these thoughts stop you from achieving your dreams and goals.
But the truth is that even though there may be lots of people running similar businesses to you, and are selling similar products or services, they won’t be doing it like you do, because they won’t have the same strengths as you.
But the question you're probably asking yourself is "How can I stand out from the crowd and be seen?".
Define your business
We all have our own individuality and strengths to bring to the table. Sometimes it’s just a case of sitting down and writing a list of the things that you’re really good at, then using these in your business as your unique selling point, to firmly define your business and help you find your niche - your own specific place for you and your business.
To help you get beyond this sticking point in your business development, you can do the following:
Find your niche
1. Identify a few of your competitors – for example is there someone in your field that you admire or would love to be as successful as?
2. Take a look at their social media profiles and their websites and see how they operate and what their strengths are.
3. Think about your own strengths – make a list of all the things you’re really good at, and what you can offer that no one else does? Is there a gap in the market that you can grab and make the most of?
You can also use your favourite colour palette to help define your niche, or focus on a specific type of product so that you become known as the go-to-person for that thing.
My own example:
I followed the steps above and looked at one business – a crochet designer who is absolutely amazing and is incredibly popular and sought after.
Firstly, I looked first at their website which is visually stunning. I can see that I need to up my game as my website is functional but definitely not visually stunning, even though I know I have some fabulous photos on my phone. The thought of a website overhaul is quite overwhelming, but I can narrow it down and just focus on my home page for now because that is where people will land when they visit my site.
Secondly, I’m signed up to the newsletter from this business and again, it’s always sent out on the same day each week and is filled with beautiful and inspiring photos and a small story-based message, along with links to products and services. I know that I have the ability to do this too, but I need to plan my time more effectively so that I can write and send my newsletters on a regularly basis (rather than a bit ad-hoc like I do now!!).
Taking action to improve your business
Once you have identified their strengths you can start taking small steps to improve. Create an action plan with deadlines, because giving yourself a deadline is really important, otherwise you’ll keep pushing it to the bottom of your ‘to-do’ list.
For example, my action plan based on the above example would be:
1. Find some amazing photos and use them on the home page of my website for a more visually appealing and engaging user experience and to encourage subscribers.
2. Schedule in time to create and send two newletters per week following my efficient process of: long blog post / newsletter / extracts for social media / podcast (read more about my engagement process here). Make sure to use great photos and engaging content.
If you bring your own unique style and personality to your content, then you will start to make it your own, and your audience will start getting to know you. More importantly, you will start growing your audience with the right people that want to hear more about you and your products and services.
The secret to growing a successful business
Using your unique style, knowledge and experience to create your unique products and services is the best way forward, together with working hard, creating a business plan and putting it into action.
I’d love to hear from you if you find this useful. You can email me at email@example.com or join my free Facebook group for knit/crochet designers and tech editors where I share more top tips and helpful advice to help you grow a successful business.