When you’re trying to bring in new clients for your business, often it’s not a matter of just convincing clients why you’ll be a good fit, but rather why you’ll be a better fit than other companies offering similar services. How can you differentiate yourself? Here are five ways to set yourself miles ahead of the competition:
- Define Your Purpose and Promise Up Front
How can you communicate the core of your business to prospective clients if you can’t even articulate it to yourself? Before you start trying to close any deals, sit down and figure out how to explain why your business exists and what it can do — in a single sentence. The process is tougher than it may sound at first, but it’s worth it for the clarity it will give you in all your following marketing and sales efforts.
- Work With Printing Companies on Your Materials
It’s important to make a good first impression, and despite the credit web marketing gets these days, the reality is that many business relationships still start with the placement of a sign, the exchange of business cards or the distribution of handouts. All of these print materials need to be created in collaboration with and printed by commercial printing companies, not made on your home or office computer. Digital printing services have made such materials affordable even in small quantities, so there’s no excuse for putting out an amateur-looking product.
- Offer and Clearly Articulate Incentives
Yes, price will always be a major factor in how people or other businesses manage their professional relationships. But price incentives aren’t the only kind of incentive you can offer; look at what else you can give your clients, such as personal contact, training or convenience. There are many clients out there looking for more than bargain-basement pricing models.
- Anticipate Your Prospective Customers’ Concerns
As you’re practicing your sales pitch or looking over your marketing materials, put yourself in your customers’ shoes. What might be confusing to them? What might seem far-fetched? What might they balk at? Depending on the scale of the potential objection, you should either work a counterpoint into your original material or at least have a well thought-out answer prepared. You may even realize that some concerns are legitimate and should prompt a change in your business offerings.
- Build Follow-Up Into Your Procedures
The reality is that it’s difficult to seal a deal at a single meeting or event, and often the most successful companies are simply the most persistent ones. Expect follow-up to be a part of your growth plan, whether you’re looking at one-on-one meetings or direct mailers.
Have you been clearly defining your business? Working with professional printing companies? Following up on a regular basis? Share what has worked and hasn’t worked for you in the comments.