How to Discover Your Hidden
What if you’ve got something going for you so remarkable that it virtually guarantees your success?
What if you’re just not seeing it?
Every business needs a remarkable benefit (or USP) in order to stand out from the competition.
Identify that unique element, and you’ll know exactly what the theme of your content marketing should be, because that will be the big story of your business.
The fact is, often that extraordinary element is something you take for granted.
Let me illustrate …
The pure, refreshing taste of Schlitz beer
Back in the 1920s, Schlitz was the number five brand in the American beer market. The company hired now-legendary copywriter Claude Hopkins to do something about that unenviable position.
The first thing Claude did was tour the facility where the beer was brewed.
He was shown how the beer was cooled in a special way that eliminated impurities. He saw the expensive white-wood pulp filters. His hosts told him that every pump and pipe was cleaned twice for purity, and each bottle sterilized four times before being trusted to hold Schlitz beer. He saw the 4,000-foot well that supplied the water, despite the fact that nearby Lake Michigan would have provided an otherwise acceptable source.
When Hopkins asked why Schlitz didn’t tell their customers about all of this rigorous attention to purity and quality, the response was “Every beer company does this.”
“But others have never told this story,” Hopkins replied.
Within months of the “new” story, Schlitz went from 5th Place to a tie for 1st Place in the market.
Who wants fruitcake?
Let’s face it … it’s hard to get excited about fruitcake. So when copywriter Gary Hennerberg was hired in 2002 by the Collin Street Bakery of Corsicana, Texas (just south of Dallas), to help boost sales of the seasonal treat, he discovered that taste tests proved that people enjoyed the product, but despised the name.
So Gary did some digging, and discovered that Collin Street Bakery had some bragging rights in the ingredient department. The bakery used Texas native pecans in their cakes — pecans that grew next to a river or stream on small farms — instead of commercially-grown pecans.
Gary knew he had a story, and he wanted to see if it would help Collin Street Bakery increase their sales. He keyed in on how rare the pecans are to tell a compelling tale.
From majestic pecan trees native only to a handful of Texas rivers and streams, soaring up to 150 feet in height and canopy, planted by Mother Nature as long ago as the Civil War.
Sales increased by an unbelievable 60%, and tired old fruitcake became Native Texas Pecan Cakes — at least when delivered by the Collin Street Bakery.
What’s your story?
These are just two examples of the dramatic difference the right story can mean to a business.
And if you’re marketing your business with quality, relevant content, it’s absolutely critical that your editorial strategy be organized around that unique story.
As content marketing becomes mainstream, the early-adopter advantage is gone. I’d argue that we’re already past that point.
But there will always be room at the top for that remarkable story. Often, all you need to do is examine what you’ve already got going for you with a fresh perspective.
So … what’s your hidden remarkable benefit?
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Thank you for sharing your ideas here. I really enjoyed reading your article.
I think good story-telling is the heart and soul of copywriting.
You need to capture the attention of your readers and do so in a succinct way. Brevity is key.
For that, it helps to visit the facility where your product is made; or to watch first-hand how service is rendered by the company that is your client.
The element of surprise, after all, is important for the ace copywriter. Surprise is what lends muscles to your copy and gives it wings to fly high like a bird in the vast, open sky.
Archan Mehta –
I only recently realized that I possess the natural gift of story-telling, both verbally and written. What an amazing discovery!
Although ignored, this gift repeatedly surfaced over the years as I key stroked my life story into my first unpublished bio-book.
Now, it can no longer be ignored and will be carefully nurtured and sculpted as I have signed up for Brian Clark's Content Marketing Mastery Course. Again, confirmation reached deep within as my heart oh-so-naturally resonated with the two stories I just read. Step-by-step, this Traveler has always observed people within their lives, occasionally inspired to write what I saw, almost as a Vision.
Thank you, AWAI, for not removing me from the email list as I worked through a six-year grief process. Thank you, Brian, for answering your Call-to-Destiny. Thank You, God, for Your Patience with me to bring us all together for just such a time as this for me to finally be able to Pay the Good Forward. I am most grateful.
Coach Kelley Crooks –