Differentiating from the Competition

by | Feb 6, 2019 | Selling Value

When you’re ready to purchase a new product, how do you decide what to buy? What are the top criteria you consider in evaluating the best solution? I think you would agree most of us are looking for a great price. That’s why when you see car and truck commercials on TV, they are usually promoting price and terms to get you into the dealership. Again, a low price, a bargain motivates! But is that really what’s most important to you?

Consider buying a laptop. Apple computers are typically fifty percent higher than competitors’ similar products. Yet people don’t hesitate to buy Apple. It’s the same thing with a car. The BMW better known as the “ultimate driving machine” costs 50% more than the comparable Honda. Yet over 2 million people buy the BMW each year.

There are three criteria buyers typically consider when evaluating the best solution for each major purchase they’re making.

  1. You’ve heard the saying, “You get what you pay for.” Well, it’s true.

Every business needs to make a profit but when they skimp on materials or service, they will fail to meet the quality test. I’ve bought brakes at place like Just Brakes. Their brake pads lasted my heavy foot about two years. But when I replaced them at my Honda dealership, they lasted five years, which to me made them worth the + 80% higher cost. Why? Better materials equal better quality. And when you can afford the higher quality, you’ll get a higher return on your investment.

  1. Will the product do what they promised and how well will it perform?

Have you ever driven a Tesla? My brother Scott has one. The capabilities of the car can be compared to a space ship. The technology is state of the art and simple to use. But when you hit the gas pedal (oops sorry, no gas, just electricity) the car accelerates like a rocket ship. Imagine how it felt to go from 70 mph to 110 mph in less than three seconds. That’s acceleration and capability.

  1. Can the provider fix or do routine maintenance in a timely, convenient and efficient manner?

If the company can’t handle service as promised or can’t respond to my phone call to make an appointment, my frustration level goes through the roof. What about you? Have you ever called an 800 number to get help, only to get a recording after pushing six buttons to narrow down your call category and then they tell you your wait time is 25 minutes. Do you hold? Fortunately, many companies now ask for your number and will call you back as soon as available. That’s better than waiting, but when they do call back, it’s often hard to understand what they’re saying. How frustrating!

Great companies worth buying from have invested in their products and services to differentiate themselves from their competition. They provide quality products, demonstrate their capabilities and deliver on their service promises. These companies build long-term and loyal customers, reducing the cost of sale while build their brand experience.

To differentiate, a world class company scores highly in all three categories. It’s not enough to say you have better quality or service…you must demonstrate it, over and over again. So, don’t give your competition even a tiny foot in the door with their tempting price offer; insure loyalty by delivering on your promise!

Good selling!

©2019 Stu Schlackman

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