Stand out in the crowd with a unique point of view : Episode 7

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You are not necessarily re-inventing the wheel. It is likely that the thoughts for a unique point of view already lives in the minds of your team. The key is to dig deep and find the story that will resonate with your ideal customer profile.

Check out this episode of The Demand Gen Fix to learn how a unique point of view helps you break through the clutter and stand out in the market.

If the story is good, they’ll follow along. And if those prospects that follow along buy into your unique viewpoint – they’ll also be more likely to buy your product or service when they are ready.

[00:00] Show intro

[00:22] Today’s topic: standing out from the crowd

[06:20] How do you stand out without a big budget?

[07:47] A unique point of view vs. message positioning

[12:17] If your product isn’t differentiated, how can you stand out from competitors

[13:58] If a unique point of view is different from message positioning, how is it defined?

[15:39] What a unique point of view should accomplish

[19:08] How do you define your point of view?

[22:28] Key takeaways

[22:53] Outro

The Demand Gen Fix is hosted by GrowthMode Marketing. Visit to learn more about us.


Hey everybody, it’s Jenni from GrowthMode Marketing. You are listening to The Demand Gen Fix – the podcast where our team of GrowthModers and our guests discuss the ins and outs of demand generation and why we believe it’s the key to long-term sustainable growth, especially in the HR tech industry.


Hey everybody, welcome to The Demand Gen Fix, episode seven. I’m Jenni from GrowthMode Marketing, and I’m here again with Erica Rhodes and Deanna Shimota and today our topic is standing out in the crowd by using a unique point of view. We know that the market out there is crowded, especially in the HR tech industry. Our unique point of view is that you need a unique point of view to help you break through that clutter and stand out in that crowded market.


The market is very crowded no matter which market you’re in. We’re talking about the HR technology industry. There are reportedly over 21,000 HR technology companies across the globe. That’s a lot. You are not directly competing against all 21,000 vendors, but you are often competing against companies that are going for the same HR budget. Even if you have different solutions, and are a leader of HR, you’ve only got so much budget to go around. You’re going to pick and choose where to spend it. You are competing against more than just those that specifically do the same things that you do in that space. Defining and consistently delivering a unique point of view will help you break through that clutter and stand out in an overcrowded market.


HR decision makers, HR technology decision makers specifically, are called on by salespeople more than anyone else in the organization, aside from maybe your IT professionals. That’s a role within your organization that is constantly getting those messages and is constantly called on by salespeople and by technology salespeople. I think that something that you also need to take into consideration is the fact that the people that you’re targeting, especially in our example of HR technology, the people you’re targeting within an organization are being completely inundated with marketing messaging and cold calls and stuff like that. It’s really important that you can define a point of view that’s going to stand out amongst those others and really set you apart from the rest of the market.


This isn’t just an HR tech issue. This is happening in all different kinds of organizations and all different industries. We just happen to be talking about the HR tech industry today.


The things that we’re going to talk about in this podcast are applicable whichever industry you’re in in the B2B space. Being able to stand out in the crowd is something as marketers, we’re all trying to accomplish. There are a lot of challenges when you’re trying to sell in that crowded market. For example, we’re talking about those HR tech buyers, there are so many solutions out there. It’s easy to be overwhelmed by the options and the more options there are, the harder it can be to narrow in and choose and to even know all the options that exist. Think of the example of when you go to a restaurant and the menu’s really big, it seems great because there are lots of options, but then it’s also harder to choose.


You can tell they don’t have a specialty. That’s really overwhelming, and everything starts to sound the same too. They all sound the same, but which one is the best?


The same happens when you’re purchasing technology, similar solutions start to sound the same. If I’m the vendor selling that technology, I certainly don’t want to sound the same as everybody else, but it’s easier said than done. A prime example the last HR technology conference that I went to, I walked the trade show floor, there were over 400 booths there. Everybody’s trying to sell in the HR technology space. And there were a lot of different type of companies that were there, but they were all focusing on the same themes that are really prevalent in the HR industry right now. And even when their products were different from each other, if you just went and looked at their booths, they looked like they were the same. You have multiple different types of solutions, for example, talking about recruitment challenges and the challenge of retaining top talent and shortages in the labor market to fill positions that you have.


It was really easy in this particular example for these smaller companies to get lost in the crowd because there were so many booths and because everybody was talking about the same thing. The big companies that spent crazy amounts of money to stand out were the only ones that really stuck in my mind. And if you’re in the HR tech industry, you know who the big players are. You know who’s spending two hundred & fifty thousand dollars on their trade show experience versus the up-and-coming tech company that gets a 10 by 10 booth and is spending significantly less. It’s really hard to compete. And so, the question becomes, how do you stand out when you don’t have those crazy big budgets that some of these well-known brands do?


At GrowthMode Marketing, the way that we would approach this with a client is really starting to bring them down the path of you have to be able to tell a good story. You have to be able to define a point of view within the market and within different issues within that market that can differentiate you from those others that are targeting those same people. You really have to be able to take that point of view and then build out a framework of these messages that you want to bring to market and things that always go back in support that unique point of view that you have. I think that’s really where the direction that we try to take clients is getting them to understand the importance of having that point of view. And this is different than just messaging and positioning and product focused messaging. It’s really just being able to define that unique point of view within the market or a specific issue within that marketplace.


Beyond that, you need to be talking about it over and over and over, right? You need to put that unique point of view into all of your messaging, into everything you do, all of the communications that you have out there to your audience, it has to have that unique point of view woven in. And it may be sounding redundant to you, but you need to keep repeating that over and over in order for it to resonate with your audience because they’re going to listen to it many, many times before it actually sinks in.


A unique point of view is not the same as message positioning. Message positioning is very product focused. It’s about how your company and your products are different and kind of building out those differentiators. Where a unique point of view becomes really important is when you have companies that have weak differentiators. They come up with the very broad, vague type of differentiators that aren’t differentiators, they’re strengths at best, and they’re the type of things that people expect when they’re purchasing from you. Examples of that are superior customer service, our easy implementation process, our robust platform capabilities, our platform customizability. These are things that I see companies not just in the HR tech space, but in the technology space in general, and even beyond that, using as differentiators.


I can think back to a conversation I actually had at the HR technology conference a couple months ago because I was going booth to booth and I was just asking them, how are you guys different to just to see what people would say. I had a conversation at one booth with a lovely team who were like, well, our differentiation is our people, we have amazing people. We get raving reviews from our customers, and our customer support is superior to our competitors. And I said, I hear you, but everyone can say that, and I’ve heard that at six other booths in this aisle alone. She said, but we can prove it. I said, okay, tell me more.


She’s said, we have lots of case studies and testimonials of positive customer experiences. I said, I’m going to be real with you. I’m in marketing. I know any company can go to their very best clients and the people that they really connect with and are friends with and say, we need a case study, are you willing to do this for us? Every company should have at least a few clients that really love them and can do that. So that doesn’t make you unique and different. Those aren’t really proof points that your customer services superior. Quite frankly, if I’m the buyer and I’m buying from you, my expectation is that your customer service is superior. I think a lot of companies make the mistake of thinking they’ve defined differentiators because they don’t have any real or meaningful differentiators, or they don’t know how to identify those differentiators. That’s part of the reason that they sound like everyone else in the market


Because a lot of these companies are selling the same product. They are selling the same thing. They’re competing for the same product. It’s not necessarily what it is you’re selling, it’s how you are putting your own spin on it.


A question you can always go back to, and a question that really gets our clients thinking is, but do your competitors say that? Do your competitors claim they have superior customer service or customer care? Do they say that they have the most customizable platform? Are they, and nine times out of 10, if not a hundred percent of the time. We hear Well, yeah, they do. They do claim that too. And that’s something that we can all get in the habit of just starting to think, yeah, are these truly differentiators? Do our competitors say the same thing? And especially in the technology space where there’s so many solutions out there with a similar offering, it’s really important that you go through an exercise to determine what these things are versus focusing on those buzzwords we think of, like customer service.


As marketers, sometimes there is no real strong and meaningful differentiation between a product and in the eyes of the buyer you may look at things and say, well, clearly this is different, and this is different. It’s not always perceived the same way by the buyer. And so when you look at a unique point of view, it’s like, okay, we can’t really sound different in this market unless our product has some meaningful differentiator in it. And, and let’s be real, a lot of times marketing doesn’t have enough influence into what’s being developed in the product to be able to be the decision maker to say, we’re going to put this in the product moving forward, and we’re truly going to be different. We can certainly advocate for it. We can certainly share the data from the conversations that we have with people out in the market who are buyers to say, we’re not seeing anything different here, but here’s one problem that everybody keeps talking about that no one solved yet. How do we solve it? But you got a product development team and engineers that are going and ultimately making those decisions. So if your hands are tied, how do you start to sound different in the market? And that’s where that unique point of view can help you start to at least articulate differently and think differently and get people really thinking and coming along with your story.


If the unique point of view is not the same as message positioning, then how do we define that? What is it that makes it different for message positioning and how do you apply it to your product and your service?


This is something that really gets people thinking. You’re challenging that status quo. You’re trying to get your audience thinking and start to put something different out there in the market that’s going to get their attention and really make you stand out. A unique point of view is something that you should really think of as a stance. We all have our own opinion or stance on different topics, and your brand can have the same type of thing. It’s something that can be controversial. It’s something that not everybody’s going to agree with. Some people might listen to that point of view and say, I don’t necessarily see it the same. You’re also going to get people who start to understand your point of view and see things through a little bit different lens. You’re going to get people to again, notice you. As you’re starting to stand out in the crowd, they can start to follow along. That’s really where you start to differentiate yourself from those others in the market.


At GrowthMode Marketing, we talk about putting that unique point of view out to the right kind of people, the right kind of businesses, which would be your ideal customer profile. These are the people that will agree with you and want to follow along with what it is that your point of view is.


As you’re developing a unique point of view first you have to identify who’s your ideal customer profile. How do they think and what do they care about and what are the triggers that make them interested in your product? What is the kind of the things happening in their organization that make them ideal for it? There’s a whole process to identifying a customer profile, we’ll certainly talk about that in a different podcast, but then creating that unique point of view that is focused very specifically on that ideal customer profile. Stop trying to be everything to everyone and start talking about your point of view in relation to that ideal customer profile. This viewpoint you come up with or this stance, not everyone may agree with you, but the ideal customer profile, you’ve already mapped out what those companies look like.


They’re going to be more likely to agree and say, what they’re saying makes sense. You’re not talking about the product and your services at this point. You’re really just talking about issues in the industry, things that are broken. There are all kinds of different ways you can approach that unique point of view, but the whole point is to make it resonate with the people that you’re trying to attract to your company. If you consistently tell that story and weave it throughout all of your content, and you tell that story over and over and over, and they hear that message, they’re eventually going to be like, I agree with them. I’m going to continue to follow along with them because I like what they’re saying. By the time they’re actually in market and ready to buy, not only do you have brand awareness, but you’ve built this trust with them where they’re like, I really like that company and what they stand for and what they talk about, I feel like they get me and my problems. They’re less concerned about the features and functionality of your technology, in comparison to everyone else because you stand out to them, and if they just looked at the product and not everything around it, you may not stand out because you’re getting lost in the crowd with everyone else. This is a way to really stand out from the crowd and build that trust.


It’s taking someone through this journey. You’re building that awareness and you’re getting to the point where they trust your brand because they feel like your stance resonates with them.


You are more interesting too because you’re taking a stand that’s different than everybody else. You’re standing out from the crowd, you’re challenging thinking you’re making a compelling case. That is somebody that a lot of companies want to work with. Somebody who thinks differently, somebody who has a different opinion, and isn’t like everybody else. Even if your product is similar, the way that you go about it, the way that you talk about your product or service is different than everybody else. So that will make you stand out.


How do you identify a unique point of view for your company? It sounds easier said than done.


The first part is going in and identifying who is your ideal customer profile? This is different than a persona. It’s different than that exercise. It’s really important that in order to successfully identify what your unique point of view is going to be, we need to identify who is your ideal customer profile. First, we would go through the exercise of identifying who that is, and then review competitors and start to determine how your competitors are actually positioning themselves. Does anyone have a unique point of view in the market, or are we all using those same differentiators that we talk about? Sometimes you’ll find that no, the competition does not have a unique point of view. If they do, it’s something that you can work from and you can understand what they’re doing. You’re going to find that this isn’t necessarily how people are approaching it.


The challenge is to find your personal angle that’s different than the status quo. Different than everybody else. Really you have to believe in it, but you also need to make sure that it’s different than all of the competitors that are out there.


You have to find an angle that your company can stand behind. What is a topic that you could debate all night over a glass of wine or with your industry friends. So, after the trade show, when you’re sitting at the bar with people from all these other companies that are all in the same space and all dealing with the same challenges in the market and trying to tackle them with their products, what do you disagree with them on and what are you debating over? What is broken in the industry and how does your company view the problem? Do you feel there is a case for change? You’re not reinventing the wheel, it’s likely that the thoughts for a unique point of view already live in the minds of your team. The key is to really dig deep and find the story that will resonate with your best fit prospects.


Overall, what GrowthMode is saying is that you need to define your company’s unique point of view and then be sure that you’re weaving that story through all of your content. You’re repeating it over and over and over. If that story is good, people will follow along. If those prospects that follow along buy into your unique viewpoint, they’ll also be more likely to buy your product or service when they’re ready.

Thanks for joining us on The Demand Gen Fix, a podcast for HR tech marketers brought to you by GrowthMode Marketing. We sure hope you enjoyed it. Don’t forget to subscribe for more perspectives on demand generation and B2B marketing strategies. Plus give us a like, tell your friends, we’ll see you next time.

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