A lot of businesses struggle with the price vs. quality issue. In almost any market there’s the potential for a player to offer lower prices for what appears to be the same product or service. And, of course, that’s the rub. It only APPEARS to be similar.
The problem is sellers don’t always help the customer see the differences. A sellers, we sometimes forget that people don’t buy only on price. In fact, most buying decisions are made on much more than price. Price is important but it’s not the only factor in the decision.
Another thing sellers often do that causes problems is we forget that customers don’t have the same information we do. It’s easy to assume they know exactly what we do, if we never step outside our own shoes. We know what the world looks like from our perspective. We can’t know what it looks like from our customer’s perspective.
And our customer’s perspective is what will make them a customer or not. Their perspective is how they see us, how they feel about us and whether or not they trust us. It’s everything they know about us in terms of how we help them get what they want. It’s our brand and it’s formed by what we do and how we do it.
One of the most important things we should focus on is how our customers perceive us. If they believe we are more likely to help them accomplish their goals, they’ll probably choose us. If their perception is that our competitor can help them get what they want for less money, we might not get the customer.
Here’s a powerful way to help the customer have a more compelling perception of your business relative to your competition. It can help you position your company in the eyes of your customer so they perceive you as the better choice to help them meet their goals.
Label your competition.
It’s that simple. But there are some rules.
Rule one is that you must be honest. Lying does not work. And you shouldn’t be negative or critical either. People know when you’re slamming the competition. You sound petty and unprofessional. (Not the perception we want, is it?) Finally, your labeling should be relevant and conversational. You should be able to drop the label into your conversation as easily as you’d comment about the weather. If it’s awkward or forced, people see that and you lose points.
So, find ways to label your competitors in ways that are factually true but unflattering relative what you do for your customers.
For example, a few years ago the mortgage business was hot. Part time mortgage lenders popped up everywhere, to the chagrin of those who made it their full time profession. If you’re working against another lender who’s in the business part time (and you’re in it full time) then you label them as a “part time lender.” And you mention this in the context of how complex and how important a mortgage transaction is. You use the factually true label to position your competitor as someone who is less committed, has fewer resources and less able to handle the transaction like it should be handled.