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Three steps to detailing yourself apart from your competition

August 20, 2014

People thought I was out of this world when I have clients who pay an astonishing amount to “wash” a car. Think about it; what workmanship goes into a $150 detailing work versus a $1,100 one? 

When I founded Inception Automotive Detailing in March 2011 at the age of 18, I had a dream of becoming an upscale company serving clients who prefer to pay the premium for the unrivaled workmanship in auto detailing. I was laughed at by other established businesses at the time and didn’t consider me as an intimidation to the marketplace.

Almost 4 years later at the age of 22, my company is one of the top ranked listings in Google for the luxury auto detailing and mobile auto detailing, recently awarded Silver for the Mississauga Business Times Reader’s Choice Award, guest speaker on student entrepreneurship at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology and University of Toronto, and a lot of other achievements. 

What did I do to detail myself apart from others? Quoting from the book I am currently writing, The Student Entrepreneurs: 5 easy steps for students on how to start a business, here are the three most important steps I consider:

Unique Value Proposition

Branding

Marketing

Unique Value Proposition

Your Unique Value Proposition is your pitch to your ideal customers why they should buy your product or service and how it will benefit them. You need to make it a no-brainer by having them create a need for your product or service rather than creating a want. It will not be easy but here are two points that you should know when you create your unique value proposition.

You need to know who your ideal customer is. You need to understand what they really need by listening to their concerns and having a genuine desire to help them do better.

You need to know the industry or market of your products or services. You need to ask yourself how the customers are attended to, how they see the industry or market, and how your pricing for your product or service is better than your competitors.

Branding

My definition of branding is where you position yourself in the marketplace. Here are four points you should consider in branding yourself:

Branding by association – who do you surround yourself with?

Branding by testimonial – what do others say about you?

Branding by achievement – what were you awarded/done to prove that you are the expert?

Branding by ‘wow’ – what did you do to deliver an extraordinary product or service?

Marketing

Similar to branding, Marketing is what you will do to present yourself to others and make yourself different. Is it how you word things? Is it how you present yourself to others that is different? Do you use all sorts of media to present your company to others? While marketing is a very broad topic, I will focus more on the strategic planning on what you can do to create your marketing strategy in 7 steps:

Understanding your customer

Analyzing your market

Analyzing your competition

Research your methods on distribution – Offline Marketing, Internet Marketing – Social Media, Search Engine, Etc, Direct Mail, Word of Mouth

Define your marketing mix  (4 P’s) – Product, Price, Promotion Place

Financial Analysis

Review your strategy and continuously revise it

In the end, nobody cares about your idea! People care about the value your idea provides. By mastering these three steps, there is no doubt that you can detail yourself apart from your competition regardless what industry you are in. As George Washington Carver would say, “When you can do a common thing in an uncommon way, you can command the attention of the world.”

Lorenzo Escobal - Inception Automotive DetailingLorenzo Escobal, Inception Automotive Detailing

Lorenzo is The Student Entrepreneur, founder of a high-end mobile automotive detailing service, Inception Automotive Detailing, serving the Greater Toronto Area. He is also the youngest Mississauga Board of Trade member at the age of 21 and the author of the upcoming business book for students, The Student Entrepreneurs: 5 easy steps for students on how to start a business.