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2023: Take Control Of Your Growth (2 of 5)

What’s On My Mind

I hope everyone was able to enjoy the Thanksgiving holiday last week! We’re back this week with Part 2 for you!

In Part 1, we discussed through a simple model to evaluate your business or book of business.

​Here’s the model again.


​The point: We all have four things to pay attention to that might be limiting factors in our business.

​These pinch points create friction, making it hard to grow.

​The bottlenecks can be in four big areas:

  • Undifferentiated Solution.

    Symptom: Sounding like others in the marketplace.

    Great solutions are unique in the buyer’s mind in less than 5 minutes.
  • Not enough or compelling enough PreBD.

    Symptom: Not getting as many “predisposed to choose you” leads as you can handle.

    Great PreBD gives you more leads (that already want you) than your team can handle.
  • Inefficient or unaligned BD.

    Symptom: not enough of your opportunities are “closing.”

    Great BD playbooks and moves are seamless across your team in the way IT uses agile–efficient system, common playbook.
  • Inadequate Delivery.

    Symptom: you aren’t creating enough “Raving Fans” in your work.

    Great delivery creates Ravings Fans very quickly and enhances the experience over time.

This week we dive DEEP into the foundational area: your Solution.

You need a differentiated Solution.

Yet, few organizations do.

I’ll tell you how to differentiate your solution in three easy ways below!

​But first, exciting news…

What I’m Super Psyched About

We’re hiring for another role at BIG, specifically for PreBD!

​The role is for a Digital Media Specialist, link HERE.

​We’re going to make a BIG push into YouTube next year and need someone to help film, edit, and manage exceptional content on the platform.

​(Did you know YouTube is the second biggest search engine and its parent, Google, prioritizes YouTube results in search? It’s a new frontier for professionals. It’s not just for Double Rainbow videos anymore, that’s for sure.)

​​This builds on the success of our podcast, which has DOUBLED in downloads in Season 4, covering the top 100 micro lessons to be great at growth!

​(That series started on August 1st this year if you want to dig in HERE. It’s a GREAT way to hone those BD skills over the holidays. Also GREAT for a team to watch, discuss, and apply.)

​Back to the point.

​Our PreBD is doing 10x better than I ever expected, so we’re doubling down.

​And this new role will be great for a creative type that wants to work on our A+++ team.

Can you share this link with anyone who might be interested?

What’s Worth Digging Into

OK, back to designing your differentiated solution.

Let’s start with a simple example.

​I enjoy mixology, hitting three things I love: throwing a good party, experimentation, and science.

​We have maybe 15 cocktail books, but only one stands apart.

​Background: Think of all the cocktail books you’ve ever seen.

​You know their organization right now. Sameness.

​There’s a chapter giving some basic info up front (buy this jigger), and then there’s a chapter for each major liquor: vodka, bourbon, tequila, and so on.

​Some books have better pictures, others more recipes, but they’re all basically the same.

​Until THIS book, which comes at mixology from the side.

​It’s structure?



​I know many of you still want that deputy actuarial badge, so maybe this is your new path!

​The book has beautiful photos and killer recipes–all the things other cocktail books have–but the organizational structure is its differentiation: Math.

​The authors boldly claim there are just six major cocktails and everything else is a derivative, and that they’re not oriented by the base liquor, but instead based on the ratios of the ingredients.

​Know these six ratios and you can create great drinks, decode what you get at fancy restaurants, and so much more.


​And yes, I just solved one of those holiday gift problems you had–get that person this book!

And plan on hanging around for a few hours.

​Here’s my point.

The authors found a way to differentiate themselves in a crowded marketplace.

And better yet…

You can too.

​Three simple ideas:

  1. Add an industry or functional area focus.

    Tailor a Solution that’s currently undifferentiated by adding an industry—or functional—specific layer on it for the industry or area you want to focus on most. Think of tailored: processes, naming, and impact based on a specific need. This can be a game changer. More on this near the ending.

    Ask: How can you tailor something you already have to “talk the language” and deliver the results a smaller market segment would like?
  2. Carve out a step that’s easy to buy.

    Take a bigger Solution you’d like to deliver more of and carve out a piece up front that’s really easy to say yes to and would result in the larger purchase 90% of the time. Think: diagnostics, benchmarking, discovery work like surveys, or anything else that gets things moving.

    Ask: How can we carve off what we usually start with into a stand-alone, “easy to say yes to” paid Solution?
  3. Bolster your measurement.

    This is a big one, seldom done.

    Everyone thinks measurement is only for hard dollar work where savings can be guaranteed. Hogwash!

    Lower the bar on measurement. Don’t fret that you can’t “measure the perfect thing in your mind.”

    Instead, think through what you can measure.

    From a differentiating factor, measuring results is as much about how you talk about it as anything else. Bonus points for having something between all or even a small portion of your fees at risk.

    Example: one of our clients simply built a client satisfaction scorecard with 10% of their fees at risk based on the numerical of the post-project client satisfaction survey. Easy, brilliant, and…differentiating!

    Ask: What could we measure that would be differentiating?

​Here’s a deeper example you might know well: GrowBIG Training.

​Going back nearly 20 years, from the very beginning, I wanted our training to be different.

​I wanted it to be comprehensive–everything a professional needed forever. It took a few years to create all that content, but we got there. And we upgraded GrowBIG all the time with a major revision late last year. New steps and science. So exciting!

​I wanted it to be science-based. Now we have 150+ peer reviewed studies that underpin all we teach. Again, it took years to get there, but we did it.

​And, most importantly, leaving the best for last because it takes a moment to explain, I wanted it to be authentic.

The idea in my mind was that there are countless “sales training” programs out there that focus on (in the negative) getting a rube to sign on the bottom line to close the deal.

That frame always made me ill just thinking about it!

I wanted a system that was so authentic you could tell your prospect what you were doing, and they’d be overjoyed. Since, we’ve even had our clients invite their clients to sit alongside them in the training, and they loved it!

So cool.

Said another way, I wanted to prioritize long-term relationships over short-term financial gain.

Yes, a great deal might make your year, but a great relationship can make your career.

We did it!

​That’s what we created, and it is something I’ll teach for decades because I believe in it so much.

I see the impact it has.

​The key?

It’s what we believe in. And it’s what so many others believe in too.


​What can you do to make your Solution unique?

​Use the ideas above. Brainstorm with your team.

​It’s helpful to get it down to three descriptors. Three simple concepts that, when combined, only you own.

​Lastly, remember this.

​It’s the concept from the great marketing strategists Al Ries and Jack Trout, taken from their seminal book Positioning, The Battle For Your Mind.

​They called it The Law Of Contraction…

A brand becomes stronger when you narrow its focus.

That works for people.

​And for Solutions.

The fewer people your Solution is for, the more meaning it’ll have in their mind.

Share this article with your teams and get the party started.

​This is a discussion best held with a group.

​Figure out how you can create differentiated solutions.

When you do, everything unlocks.

​Oh, and one last thing.

If you Part 1’s article, you know it’s coming…

Next week we…



ps. Sela, hope you liked that one! 😉

Ps. An amazing human, researcher and fan of GrowBIG (Denise Gaskin, PhD) is doing a study of introversion in female leaders. If you’re interested in being a part of her study, click HERE.

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