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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Outshine Your Competition

 This weeks tip comes from Susan Young at Get in Front Communications You can follow her on Twitter @sueyoungmedia

The way you communicate with yourself, clients, prospects, employees, and community will determine your success. Want to beat the competition? Sure you do. Consider these 50 tips. Most are based on our internal and external communication.

1. Forget humility: self-promote.

2. Watch your competition but remain clear on your own vision and goals.

3. Write down your purpose, own it, and read it every day.

4. Look at education and conferences as investments instead of “what will this cost?”

5. Get enough sleep so your mind and body can be refreshed.

6. Expect good things to happen.

7. Spend time with industry leaders and people you can learn from.

8. Read, read, read.

9. Develop interests outside of your typical hobbies and comfort zone. This sparks creativity.

10. Analyze. Then act.

11. Keep up with technology.

12. Delegate and outsource.

13. Draw boundaries on your time.

14. Attend your competitors workshops and programs. Watch them carefully (stalking is discouraged).

15. Keep on top of new industry developments and trends.

16. Be visible in your local community. It’s all about relationships.

17. Speak and write for business organizations to build your expertise and name recognition.

18. Volunteer at your professional association or networking group.

19. Put your head down and work.

20. Know your values and what you stand for.

21. Be friendly and polite to your competition. They will share things with you.

22. Read your competitors’ blogs, newsletters, websites, and chats.

23. Track trade publications, business sections, and resources in other cities to get fresh ideas for products, services, and opportunities.

24. Get friendly with news reporters who cover your industry and/or area.

25. Believe that you are capable, talented, and creative.

26. Write down your daily, weekly, and monthly goals. Every task you work on should move you closer to your goals.

27. Get out of your own way.

28. Learn something new every day—and apply it.

29. Be clear on your brand and the results you deliver for clients.

30. Stop making excuses. Be fully accountable and learn from your mistakes.

31. Communicate with your staff and team. They know more than you think.

32. Refrain from bad-mouthing anyone, including your competition.

33. Develop strong communication skills.

34. Hustle (in a good way).

35. Keep your options open.

36. Learn and practice outstanding customer service.

37. Know the pricing, sales point, and profitability of your products and services.

38. Kick your own ass.

39. Network where your competition networks.

40. Under-promise and over-deliver.

41. Have a live human being with manners answer your phones.

42. Return e-mails and phone calls within 24 hours or less.

43. Send hand-written notes of gratitude to clients and prospects.

44. Keep your cards close to your vest.

45. Protect your business reputation in your local community and online.

46. Appreciate word-of-mouth advertising and marketing. It puts money in your pocket.

47. Avoid projects and prospects that are not a “good fit.” Refer high maintenance prospects to your competition.

48. Trust your instinct- implicitly.

49. Avoid jealousy and envy. They are distractions that blur your own vision.

50. Put your head on the pillow at night knowing you did your absolute best.

As professional soccer star Mia Hamm said, “You can’t just beat a team, you have to leave a lasting impression in their minds so they never want to see you again.”
Thanks Susan for the great tips!!

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