If an insurance or finance company wants its brand to stand out from the competition, differentiating it from its competitors is the place to start.
Looking to another industry, Subaru has done this more successfully than most. Its customers give new meaning to brand loyalty. Many are passionate are downright fanatical in their allegiance.
See also: How to create zombie loyalists
According to Forbes, the Subaru brand has the most loyal customers in the automobile industry, with Forester leading the way.
Subaru customers are quick to say their cars are safer, handle flawlessly in all types of weather, and keep their value far better than other brands. All this flies in the face of what many people view as dated and stodgy styling.
It’s the same with anyone who has a job. Differentiation makes the difference when you want to be known as your company’s most valuable employee.
Getting there is quite simple. Start by figuring out what creates value, and what sets you apart from others? Here are thoughts about personal differentiation:
1. Always be ready. Brand yourself as someone who comes through in the crunch. Be ready to step in. “Carl lost his voice,” “Tonya is trapped in traffic,” and “Max had a customer emergency.” These are daily occurrences — and most people put their head down and try to become invisible. Their first thought is thinking up some lame excuse to avoid getting nailed. Be the one who’s always ready.
2. Make sense. Whether it’s in a meeting or in any situation, making sense is essential. That’s not easy. Most people automatically think that what makes sense to them will make sense to others. It’s both not true, and it can spell trouble. So, before saying anything, ask yourself how this would sound if someone else said it? Making sense makes a difference.
3. Never wing it. Winging it is all it takes to go down in flames. Sure, your co-workers will say, “Hey, you did great.” Don’t believe it; you didn’t. You probably embarrassed yourself and your company. To wing it is to blow it by saying things we don’t mean, are incorrect, and don’t make sense.
Here’s what to do when you’re put on the spot. “Give me three minutes.” Then, jot down three main talking points. Add a sentence for an introduction, and one at the end as a close.
4. Come up with solutions. “I’ll work on that” are the magic words. Don’t hold back just because you don’t have an instant answer. Not knowing can be an advantage — no baggage. If you work at it, you can find one that’s a good fit, and that gets positive attention.