Is it time to differentiate? How to attract new business in price conscious times.
With the economy shifting, consumers and businesses are becoming more selective with whom they spend their money with. History and even your own experience have shown that price is not the defining measure as to whether people choose you as their provider of choice unless there is nothing else to differentiate the options.
What will influence a business or consumer to choose you versus your competitor? Sometimes we may feel that we have to make big changes in business to stand out from the crowd, to make a difference, however in my experience, I have found that it is the little things that we do on a consistent basis that are usually the most powerful.
Here are some simple powerful ways to differentiate yourself. And remember… better is not better. Different is better.
Focus on Value-added Services: Instead of competing solely on price, differentiate your offerings by providing additional value-added services that are unique and appealing to your target customers. This could include:
- Personalised consultations
- Extended warranties
- Complimentary product training sessions
- After-sales follow up and support
- Thank you/hand over gifts
- Loyalty rewards programs.
By offering extra value beyond the basic product or service, you can create a competitive advantage and justify a slightly higher price point.
Emphasise Quality and Reliability: Highlight and communicate the superior quality and reliability of your products or services. In a price-conscious market, customers may be willing to pay a slightly higher price for a product or service that is known for its durability, performance, or dependability. Make sure you communicate the benefits of choosing a higher-quality option and demonstrate how it can save customers money or time in the long run by reducing the need for replacements or repairs.
Provide Excellent Customer Service: Exceptional customer service can be a powerful differentiator in a price-conscious market. Show up on time for appointments, communicate clearly, be attentive to customer needs and go the extra mile to ensure customer satisfaction. By providing outstanding service that exceeds customer expectations, you can build customer loyalty and word-of-mouth referrals, which will help you stand out from competitors solely focused on price.
Make it a habit to follow-up with people promptly. It sounds simple, right? In my experience, and surveys regularly back this up, 67% (amazingly!) of people do not follow up in business. Did you know that most sales are not closed until the sixth, seventh or even until the eighth attempt; very few deals are achieved on the first few attempts, and yet only three percent of businesses follow-up more than twice. Whatever business you are in, if it involves making a sale, signing that contract, or building relationships, the best way to stand out from the crowd is to follow-up promptly, follow-through, and be persistent and determined.
Positions Yourself as a Specialist: Most markets are overwhelmed with generalists. A generalist is a jack of all trade yet master of none. This may be an effective way to start a business yet do you have the opportunity in today's market to position yourself as a specialist in a particular niche. Think about the future of your industry and what guidance, support, and advice your customers are going to want and need. This may include cutting-edge technology, exclusive designs, proprietary processes, or unique customisation options. By offering something truly unique and valuable, you can differentiate your offerings from competitors and justify a higher price point.
Remember, in a price-conscious market, it's important to carefully balance differentiation with price sensitivity. Conduct market research, understand your target customers' preferences, identify their pain points and test different strategies to determine what resonates best with your audience. Always monitor your approach based on customer feedback and market dynamics, then adjust your strategy to stay competitive and meet the evolving needs of your customers.
Written by Jon Mailer
CEO Of PROTRADE United