What Is Your Something?


Communicating what sets your business apart — so your customers know they’re in the right place — can feel pretty uncomfortable if you’re not used to doing it.

The old expression “unique selling proposition” might put the sparkle in the eyes of some marketers, but to me it sounds stiff and overly complicated.

Technically, it’s accurate. But “unique” is a word that’s horribly overused, “proposition” has weird baggage, and “selling” is best suited to a particular type of personality.

I don’t know many people who really love selling. People who are really great at it tend to use different terms, so they don’t get lumped in with those guys.

Stuck on your copywriting? Use better words

So let’s turn the idea on its head: What’s your Something?

“Something” is an unpretentious word. It feels human instead of corporate.

What sets you apart can appear to be equally modest. But it’s often the small details that grab — and hold — a customer’s attention.

“Something” can be big or small. It’s a word and an idea that has nearly unlimited potential. You can play with it and shape it into something that feels like your own.

Your Something might be the reason you started your business. It might be your style. (This seems like an easy one for artists and designers, but you still have to be able to clearly and concisely describe what you do.)

Your Something isn’t something to agonize over. It’s there already, written all over you. The tricky part is seeing it.

You likely can’t see it because it’s so much a part of you.

It’s also possible you’ve been taught that fitting in is better than standing out, and now that you feel like you have to stand out in a crowded marketplace, you’d rather hide under your bed and hope business takes care of itself.

Shift your perspective

So here are a few questions:

  • How would your dearest friends describe you — the professional and personal you?
  • What is it that you do best?
  • What is it that you love to do?

That should change things a little.

Standing out doesn’t mean you’re loud, or boastful, or obnoxious.

It means you know what your Something is, and you’re sharing it in the best way — by being true to your work and your reasons for doing it, and delighting your customers.

Photo by Josh Edgoose on Unsplash