Stop Doing What Everyone Else is Doing and Get Original
I’m a big fan of “The Big Idea” hosted by Donny Deutsch on CNBC. Last night he had on his show Russell Simmons who, in my humble estimation, is a master marketer.
Russell Simmons is the co-founder of Def Jam records who signed the Beastie Boys, LL Cool J, Public Enemy, Run-D.M.C. and other breakout groups. He also co-founded Baby Phat and Phat Farm clothing lines, Def Comedy Jam on HBO, and more. He knows his stuff and continues to break through on just about everything he does.
He has created an empire by doing what he loves and by doing what no else was doing. This requires some research and guts, which is what this post is all about.
As karate school owners, we’re already doing what we’re passionate about. However, that alone isn’t enough to make a successful karate school.
Many karate school owners decide to follow rather lead thinking that is the easiest way to get more students. If their competitor down the street starts offering after school programs for kids, a black belt club, and are open 6 days a week they feel they need to do this in order to be competitive.
However, that isn’t always the case.
Like Russell, I like to do what others are not doing. Look at your competitors to see what they’re doing, compare it to what you’re doing, then look to see what neither of you are doing. Then start testing to see if people respond to it. You might be surprised to learn what exactly is missing and what you can do to break through.
Is anyone specializing in weapons training? If not, maybe you can fill that void. Is everyone else teaching (or focusing) on kids? Perhaps you can focus on just adults. Is everyone emphasizing competition and tournaments? Maybe there is an opening to be the self defense specialist. And so on.
Don’t be afraid to do things differently. In marketing, it’s never best to just blend in.
And who knows, by finding what others aren’t doing you might end up on the Big Idea yourself someday, like Mr. Simmons.
How do you stand out from your karate school competitors in your area?