“We’re not in Kansas anymore.”
~Dorothy, “The Wizard of Oz”
No, we’re not here to talk about that Oz, but the Oz in question can produce results as “magical” as the fabled wonderful wizard (if not more so). For one of my clients, meeting this particular Oz was the equivalent of going from that dusty, quiet town in Kansas to the fantastic, technicolor world somewhere over the rainbow.
Yesterday on a call for one of my brands, someone made the joke that most people in business believe you’ve “arrived” when you get featured in “The Journal” (meaning The Wall Street Journal). It’s an example of the common belief that one major media win can change the trajectory for your company and your brand. When you appear in “The Journal” as a businessperson, you know you’ve “arrived.” You have status and credibility. Social proof. No longer must you toil away in obscurity; now the world will finally know who you are, and you will be not only noticed, but celebrated.
Is this belief true, or is it built on a fantasy as flimsy as the Wizard of Oz’s so-called powers?
I can tell you, from my experience, that landing that big media win certainly can skyrocket your success. But before you ever have a chance of getting there, you first need to identify what you have to offer that is worth making people take notice.
Dr. Scheiner Meets Dr. Oz
The media outlet that signals your “arrival” depends on your industry and target audience. For my client Adam Scheiner, a laser cosmetic surgeon in Tampa, FL, “arriving” meant being featured on the highly popular Doctor Oz Show. For Dr. Scheiner, me getting him on this show was a turning point for his practice. It transformed his business and forever changed it. The segment he appeared in (which has been rerun many times) still pays dividends several years after it aired.
Part of landing Dr. Scheiner on The Doctor Oz Show involved putting in the work to leverage my contacts to land Dr. Scheiner his guest spot. But this wasn’t where the heaviest — or the most important — lifting was done. The key to securing this appearance was identifying what made Dr. Scheiner and his practice stand out so much a popular TV show wouldn’t think twice about having him on.
Whether you’re in the medical industry or the marketing industry or the widget-making industry, the path to your turning point begins with the same crucial step: figuring out what’s different, unique, and noteworthy — in other words, magical — about your brand.
Part of my Define, Disrupt and Dominate® process involves analyzing a practice, brand or business to discover its underutilized assets. What sets it apart? What is its unique offering to the market and the world? Even with this time-tested approach, much of it comes down to instinct, but there are some practical tips I can give you to help you hone in on an underutilized asset in your business, yourself or your brand.
First, let’s take a look at how this process worked for Dr. Scheiner…
A Brief Case Study
After delving deep into Dr. Scheiner’s treatments and practice, I realized the key to his magic lay in one condition in particular on which he was an unknown expert. He wasn’t really touting himself, but he was treating a condition few doctors in the world had been able to treat successfully.
When I began working with Dr. Scheiner, he was bundling this Festoons treatment with his lower eyelid lift procedure. He had written a chapter in a medical book on Festoons, but he hadn’t tapped into the great marketability of his procedure. The more I studied and evaluated the condition and how few other doctors were able to treat it, the more I saw the worldwide importance of Dr. Scheiner’s treatment. His underutilized procedure for this commonly misdiagnosed and very often mistreated condition was an asset he didn’t even realize had massive market potential.
My transformation of an underutilized procedure into a global treatment for a commonly misdiagnosed and mistreated condition for Dr. Adam Scheiner:
How to Uncover YOUR Magic
To uncover your brand, your company or your product’s underutilized assets, here are some key questions to ask yourself:
- What do other businesses or associates refer potential clients to you for? It might not be the sexy bigger picture or more holistic view of what you offer or have expertise in, but the problem they believe you, your brand or your company solves for them could hold a key. Another question that could uncover this key: What do your professional associates ask you for advice about?
- Does your methodology or business process hold a key? Detail your process, framework, or methodology. Below each step, list the problem (if there is one) that step solves for your customer. Is there a stand-alone offering in there, one that you are bundling with your services or with other attributes of your product?
- What job does your client assign to your product or services? (Not just the ones you market or list as your services or the featured attributes of your products.) Clayton Christensen has a brilliant theory and approach to marketing called “the job to be done”: “What causes us to buy a product or service is that we actually hire products to do jobs for us.” What job(s) do your clients or users assign to your product or services?
- Do you have a billion dollar jewel hidden in your side project? Not a hobby per se, but a side project or interest related to your industry? Or even loosely related to your product or offerings? A tool you created internally for your team? A side project could also be problem you have encountered in your company that you’ve created a solution for. Is there market potential in this side project? For instance, Slack — which makes software for companies to collaborate work — started as a side project. Its valuation today? $1 billion.
- Does your brand stand for something bigger than itself? (I sure hope so!) What is it? Could you ignite a movement around this concept/cause/belief? Or join one? Remember, a movement isn’t a campaign. A movement inspires and connects. It has a noble purpose that differentiates your brand or company from the crowd.
YOU CAN Get to Oz
Or “The Journal,” or Forbes or whatever national media feature to you signals your “arrival.” You have the key to the Emerald City, so to speak, already in your possession — you just need to do a little digging to uncover it.
Learn more about uncovering your magic, getting noticed and dominating your industry by signing up to become a Dominant Player here.