Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Differentiation The Key To People Remembering You And Your Game

Writen by Manny Nowak

What exactly are you selling? What is your product or service? How do you differentiate yourself from everyone else? Are you really interested in being at the top of your game? Strange question isn't it? You might here people say, "I am in the tradeshow labor business, so I sell labor", or "I am in the office supply business, so I sell office supplies", or "I am in the coaching business, so I sell coaching. But what is it that you really sell? Why would I buy from you, there are many people out there selling the same product. You are just the same; I might as well stay with who I have.

I used to be in the contract labor business for the tradeshow industry. So I sold labor – right? Wrong – what I sold was peace of mind. What I sold was the comfort that the customer would have by using us for his/her labor needs. The feeling that he/she would have no concerns over getting the work done, because we were that good. That is what I was selling, and once I defined it that way, I totally differentiated our company from all the rest and we became a leader in the industry. While my competition would try and sell you labor to put your booth up, I would be selling you the belief that all your problems were my problems and I would take care of them. That you could be totally confident that your job would not just get done, but get done very well. We even took it further by going outside our areas and helping you in any situation you needed help. Now, instead of worrying about your booth going up and everything coming together, you could relax, enjoy the process, and know your boss would think you did a great job. How about you, what business are you in? How are you differentiating yourself from the competition? What are you selling?

Let us look at a few more examples to help you see what we are talking about. Let us share some success stories about different businesses and what happens when you are not like the rest.

I have a friend that sells office supplies. Wrong he does not sell office supplies – what he sells is convenience. What you might ask does that mean? Simply, that I could go and buy my office supplies at Staples, or Office Max, or online at a variety of vendors. They all have a price break; they all have the same products. So why do I buy from this vendor? Because if I need something quick, I can pick up the phone, call him or send him an email and he will have it to me the next day. What is that worth? If I am online ordering and have a problem – I can call him direct and get the answer I need, get the help I need. What is that worth? What is he selling? Anyone can sell office supplies, I can buy them from any vendor, but I can only buy this super service from this vendor that is what differentiates him.

My own product is coaching business owners and professionals. Or is it? What is my real product? My real product is "success beyond what you think you can achieve". So when I speak with a prospect, I am not trying to get them to buy coaching, what I am trying to get them to buy into is taking their business and life to new levels of success. The beliefs that if they work with me, their business will grow to the place they want. So my product is success. Anyone can sell you coaching, what I sell you is building a very successful business and life – exceeding your expectations.

Point is that if you differentiate your product/service, you need to make sure people remember who you are. You can take two sales people sitting in office right next to each other. One makes $25,000 a year, the other $250,000 a year. Why? Maybe because one is selling insurance and the other is selling assurance.

I now want you to look at your business and answer these questions.

1. What is it that your customers buy from you? Have you ask them? Ask.
2. Your top 10 customers – why do they buy from you? Ask them.
3. How do you present your product to new prospects?
4. How could you better present it – and close more business?
Go out and differentiate your product. You can make it so unique, that no one else is selling what you have, but everyone wants to buy what you are selling.

Manny Nowak has spent over 25 years in building successful companies in the software, information systems and tradeshow industries. An ex-marine and former top-notch computer programmer, Manny has an extensive background in building the attitudes that create great success, attitudes that take you to the extreme levels of success Success means doing the right things To learn more or hire Manny for your business or event. (856) 358-4021

1 comment:

William said...

Interesting..! Staples and Office Max both are my favorite store for affordable school supplies.