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May 23, 2014

Making Your Product or Service Unique

You probably have a pretty good idea of what you want to sell but whether you've been perfecting your craft for years or don't have a clue what you want to make, this article is still worth a read. If you're planning on building a business that will eventually be a main source of income and grow bigger each year, you'll want to put some serious consideration into how you can set your handmade business apart from the rest.

Here are 5 things to consider to help your business and products stand out:

  • Do what you know and love - it's easy to see a fad and jump on that train, but if it's not something you're truly passionate about, you'll have a hard time keeping ahead of the game. When you have a genuine interest in something, the work that goes into building a business out of it, feels less like work and more like fun. You'll want to spend hours working on it, new ideas will come to you easily and learning the ins and outs will actually be interesting.
  • Don't try and be everything to everyone - starting a handmade business with the intention of accommodating to a wide variety of customers can be overwhelming. You'll have a hard time setting yourself apart and defining who you are as a business. Focus on one product or service and then you can adjust, grow and build upon it as you go.
  • Narrow down that niche - once you have that idea, think about if you can narrow down its field even more. It probably sounds backwards to make your target market smaller than bigger but I really am a big believer in finding a really specific niche to specialize in, in order to set yourself apart. Once you find that niche, you can go on to...
  • Be known as "the best" or an expert in your niche - imagine you're at a craft sale and there's a dozen vendors selling jewelry. Each of their styles are a bit different and maybe there's one that suites your style a little better than the others. Now imagine there's a table selling only turquoise jewelry; every shape, size and style of turquoise jewelry you could imagine. Even if you didn't buy from them that day, they would surely stick out in your mind next time you, or someone you know, were looking for or had a question about a turquoise piece. This is the benefit of narrowing down your niche. Once you stick in consumers minds and build a customer base, then you can go onto expand the products or services you offer.
  • Become a marketing guru - how many times have you walked down the shampoo aisle at a drug store, looked at the hundreds of choices and picked up the bottle that had the colors, font and shape that appealed/stood out to you the most. If narrowing down your niche isn't the way for you to go, consider finding a fun and unique way to brand yourself. Make your business card the opposite of what people would expect from someone in your field, find something unusual to package your product in, display your items in a unique way at a craft show or find a different market to appeal to with your branding than other companies in your field are targeting.

Image courtesy Stuart Miles/

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