Business has probably never been more competitive than it is now so there’s never been a better time to give your customers reasons to choose you.
Even little things you may not think are important could make all the difference to them. People like to think their needs are different and will gravitate toward something they perceive is made just for them. If you can’t demonstrate what makes your business special, your prospective customers will never see it. The main ways in which businesses and professional services can stand out is by offering something unique in the form of service or value. Or they may offer some degree of exclusivity. You can also stand out by offering a cheaper price but it’s rarely the best positioning.
You can offer service-related benefits whether you sell a service or a product. For example, you could offer exceptional customer support such as: “On call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.” or “We will get there within an hour or the service call is free.” Either of these would work well for plumbers, engineers, mechanics or any other type of repair service. When clients come in for an appointment, they may be worried about spending too much time in the waiting room. This is especially true if you are in the medical profession (e.g. dentists, chiropractors and physicians).
So what about working something like the following into your positioning: “You will not wait more than 10 minutes in our waiting room or your visit is free.”
Another tactic is to use a warranty. Why not offer the longest warranty possible? Your warranty may range from 1 year to a lifetime. Remember, the bigger the promise you can make, the more appealing your product or service will normally appear to your prospective customers.
With a little imagination, you can create an exclusive positioning. If you are offering a product, you could just limit the number that will be sold. Alternatively, you can offer a limited first edition with more benefits than later editions. This will really help you launch your product with a bang. For services, you can accept clients by recommendation only. Obviously, this works exceptionally well to create exclusivity to most any type of premium service. Everyone wants to belong to something. So set up a community of some sort. When membership is limited to clients only, it creates a feeling of exclusivity.
Value is the combination of price and quality. If the quality of your product or service is greater than that of your competitors, then prospective customers will gladly pay a higher price. You can easily offer something extra along with your product or existing service to add value. You could include detailed guidance and tips on how to get the best results from the product or service. When a product or service is complicated, many users will find it difficult to use. If you can include a manual, instructional videos or even better yet, one-on-one training, it will go a long way in adding extra value. No matter what you are selling, there are usually items that will fit well with it. The client will always be interested in other related products (or bonuses).
These related products are perfect examples of value enhancers. For example, if you create web graphics for your clients, you could also offer web hosting, a complete web site overhaul, or even tips on how to get traffic to their website. The list can go on and on.
Another way to add value without increasing your expense is to contact businesses with clients who are similar to yours and work out a trade with them. Real estate agents could do deals with furniture shops in their area. Get creative and you’ll find dozens of ways to add value to your product or service. But just be sure to give them additional products or services that mean something to them.
About the author: Robert Greenshields is an information marketing coach who helps professionals like consultants, coaches and therapists to attract more of their ideal clients by turning their expertise into a high-value product. Download his free Productize Your Expertise report at www.MindPowerMarketing.com