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Are You “Really” Different?

Do you feel that what you do for clients is really different from your competitors? Many service providers I speak with do not feel they are really different. Or, they tell me they provide great service, which is like saying they are not different. ;) And there are two ways to look at this. On the one hand, if you are a sales trainer, then at the end of the day, you are providing clients with sales training. And that is what all of your competitors are doing. On the other hand, how you provide that training, the process clients go through, and the experience they have can be wildly different from your competitors. Talking with clients is often one of the best ways to see this most clearly. We are often too close to our own businesses to see it. Ask your clients why they chose you and what they would tell others about doing business with you. This can lead to new insights and confirmation that what you are focusing on is working (or not). If the only reason they chose you is because they liked you or a referral, then you probably have some work to do. This is where you should take a step back and think about how you could provide a different experience than they would get from your competitors. This could be through education, a simplified process from the customer’s perspective, or how the final outcome is delivered. Once again, I suggest talking with clients to see how you could improve on your service. Asking questions like “What could we have done to make your experience better?” can get to some interesting and useful answers. Once you are clearer on your differentiators, your marketing becomes a whole lot easier.

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