Friday, 12 December 2008

Innovation Wins – So Make It Different

This week I took part in some videos for a new website aimed at entrepreneurs and small business. I was interviewed about marketing and reminded the audience that marketing at its most basic is about identifying and communicating your point of differentiation in the marketplace i.e. what makes you different. And if you are starting a new business and you don't know why your proposition is different then you have a problem. Because survival in a competitive market is about standing out from the crowd.

So, I knew Rough Luxe were doing something right as soon as I checked into their Kings Cross hotel on Wednesday night. This is a new hotel concept (and we have seen a few of those over the years) billed as 'Half rough, half luxury. A little bit of luxury in a rough part of London. A little bit of rough in a luxurious London'.

The business has only been open 6 weeks and the owners have certainly created something refreshingly different:
- an intimate B&B-style hotel in an area notorious for run-down hotels
- a hotel oozing with personality, from the very welcoming hospitality to the resident dog, Spud.
- there are just nine bedrooms; mine was tiny but cosy and it certainly felt homely.
- but its key point of difference is how it's furnished: distressed walls, bare floorboards, old doors, some walls just plastered, with great furnishings.

The Observer reviewed it as follows: This idiosyncratic place, with its knowing nod to the gritty surroundings, felt like a genuinely warm, and witty, concept. Will it be a success? It deserves to be. London is surely big enough, eclectic enough and downright rough enough itself for this hotel to be a winner.

So when you are launching a new product or service, make sure it’s different and shout about that difference….

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