Grow Your Business In 5 Days
- Video Training Course - Video #6
TUTORIAL #6: STAND OUT FROM THE CROWD
Stand Out From Every Other Business In Your Industry
Hello and welcome to ‘Grow Your Business In 5 Days’.
This tutorial explains how, by differentiating yourself from every other business in your industry, or at least in the geographical areas you operate in, will make it easier for you to acquire the right type of customers. We call this strategy ‘Unique Perceived Benefit’.
A Unique Perceived Benefit (UPB) is the one thing that sets you apart from the competition. It’s similar to unique selling point or unique selling proposition but it’s different in that as long as your customer THINKS it’s unique, then that’s good enough. Communicating this perceived uniqueness is a powerful and persuasive part of every marketing piece you use to attract your target market to your business.
It’s what really makes you ‘stand out from the crowd’.
This is a weak area for most businesses and one which really hinders growth. I’m sure, like most business owners you’ve been sat in front of a prospect and although they have been very receptive to everything you have to tell them, they still won’t change supplier, even if they are critical of their current one. This can be highly frustrating can’t it?
The problem is that customers, as I mentioned in the second tutorial have become more discerning which means they’re looking for reasons to change or choose (unique reasons or competitive advantages) things that are desirable to them that no other business can offer them. But because so few businesses create this uniqueness, most buyers (rightly or wrongly) think that all their potential supplier options are very much the same as each other. And this perception leads to two critical outcomes and neither of them are good for you and your business.
First, if your customers or potential customers see no discernible difference between you or your competitors, then the only way they can choose you is based on price. By not differentiating yourself from your competition, you are forcing your prospects to buy based on price, regardless how much better you think your product or service is. So right now when you think your market is increasingly buying more on price, it’s your fault – it’s not the market’s fault. You’ve sent them down a path where they have no alternative other than to buy on price.
And whilst this is a massive topic in its own right, before you start shaking your head in disbelief, let me tell you that research carried out over the last 6 recessions has shown that only 5-20% of people actually buy purely on price in any given industry. Most business owners think it’s the opposite. More interestingly the research shows that of the 5-20% of people who do buy on price 40-50% of them have to buy on price because they can’t afford more expensive alternatives. Therefore, in reality only a fraction of people buy on price through choice.
You think it’s much more than this because you or your competitors haven’t worked hard enough to differentiate yourselves, and why would a buyer pay more for something they believe is exactly the same. Nobody wins in this scenario. Not you. Not the customer.
So not differentiating has a huge impact on your prices and on your ability to acquire customers. It leads to ‘commodity selling’ and once you’re trapped, it’s hard to get free! If you ARE selling a commodity type product or service, then you need to work EVEN HARDER to differentiate your business, product or delivery of that product or service from the rest of your competition.
Second, not differentiating leaves you open to inertia. In other words, even if a customer is unhappy with their existing supplier and there are many in this situation, they simply don’t change because they think the alternatives aren’t any better. Why jump out of the frying pan into the fire? Better the devil they know.
In the customers mind, changing, for the sake of changing to another supplier who is just going to be like the existing one, just isn’t worth the hassle.
So hopefully you can now see that not differentiating has a major negative impact on you and your business. However, creating your own Unique Perceived Benefit isn’t that easy, but the good news is, we’ve identified 10 different proven and powerful Unique Perceived Benefits for you to consider and at least one will be suitable for your business.
1. New and Unique - Sometimes you can provide a product or service that’s so new and unique that the product or service itself is the Unique Perceived Benefit. Being the original or first mover in the market is a Unique Perceived Benefit that no one can duplicate. Inevitably, a competitor will emerge with a knock-off or copy of your product or service but, until then, you can promote the newness and uniqueness of your product or service as the Unique Perceived Benefit. When the competition heats up, you can switch your Unique Perceived Benefit so that it positions your business as the ‘first’ or ‘original’ one of its kind.
2. Highest Quality - One well-known brand that immediately comes to mind when you think about quality is the leading international watch maker, Rolex. They have a short Unique Perceived Benefit statement that communicates volumes… Rolex – “Quality Takes Time”. Rolex have educated the market as to what quality actually means in the context of a watch, and the same is required for customers when it comes to understanding what a ‘quality’ business is in your industry.
3. Expert Status - This type of Unique Perceived Benefit communicates the idea that “We are the top in our field. You can trust our knowledge and experience”. This works very well for EVERY type of business because it can be firmly focused on the target market you’ve identified. The best way to create expert status is to write a book, or create special reports focused on your expertise and the target market. The book we wrote titled, ‘How To Quickly Grow Your Accountancy Practice’ is our best-selling book, written to create expert status in the accountancy industry is a good example of what I’m talking about.
4. Amazing Customer Service - Providing superior customer service is a wonderful way to add value, as well as develop long-term customer loyalty. To surpass the competition you must go beyond simply satisfying customers, you have to AMAZE them. One of the ways to do this is by using ‘Moments Of Truth’, which we covered in tutorial 4, whereby you look at every point of contact with your customers and create a WOW experience each and every time. Just think how many times, and in how many different contexts, your business meets, writes to and telephones customers. These are all opportunities to give your client a much better understanding of the true value of the service they receive.
5. The Largest Size/Selection - Providing the largest selection of items can be a powerfully effective Unique Perceived Benefit. The classic example of this is Amazon.com. For years (prior to extending their product line) Amazon's Unique Perceived Benefit was “Earth's Biggest Bookstore”.
Even though they were not the first and today they have intense competition, from both online and brick-and-mortar bookstores, Amazon.com still leads the pack in online bookselling. This is because they clearly differentiated themselves early on by being the biggest.
6. Speed - The speed at which your product or service is delivered can be a powerful Unique Perceived Benefit. For example Regus, the serviced office specialists, have a very powerful 3-word Unique Perceived Benefit that sums up their uniqueness perfectly… “Instant Offices Worldwide.”
FedEx changed the shipping world when it began guaranteeing overnight delivery of packages. Their UPB has stood the test of time… FedEx – “When It Absolutely, Positively Has To Be There Overnight”.
What can you do that’s faster than your competition?
7. Strongest Guarantee - A powerful guarantee can immediately give you a compelling Unique Perceived Benefit. Craftsman Tools is a prime example of this UPB category. Like all carefully crafted UPBs the Craftsman statement leaves you with no doubt as to what their main advantage is…
Craftsman Tools – “Hand tools so tough, they're guaranteed forever”. We are massive advocates of guarantees. The key is therefore to find ones that are meaningful and stand out in your market place. What is it that will reassure your target market?
8. Problem/Solution - Understand that you are not selling a product or a service, you’re selling a major solution to your target market’s most pressing problem or problems.
Think about the following situation… You’re out for a business lunch and someone you’ve been speaking to asks you this very familiar question… "What do you do for a living?"
Now, you probably answer... “I’m a <insert your industry>”
This is a very common reply and most people will ‘switch off’ after asking this question and hearing that reply! What you must realise is that when you answer in this way regarding your own business, you’re saying what you ARE, rather than what you DO FOR YOUR CUSTOMERS! There’s a massive difference. The good news is your competition ALSO answer in this way – they don’t have a Unique Perceived Benefit. All they are selling is the ‘product’ or the ‘service’ and not the result!
To show you what we mean, let’s take two common examples and add a Unique Perceived Benefit…
In essence, your UPB completely focuses on what you do for your specific target market(s) or niche(s). It is the major benefit to them – the result of using your services. By focusing on the customer’s most pressing problems you can uncover the major benefit. Think about your prospects’ and customers’ fears, obstacles and problems. How does your service reduce or eliminate these fears? For example, a telemarketing service company would say the major problem their prospects and customers have is…
They can’t generate enough leads or enquiries themselves.
Here’s how you’d then turn this problem into a powerful benefit…
Problem: They can’t generate any leads or enquiries.
Benefit: We help businesses generate high-quality leads.
Do you see how easy this is? So having identified the major problem your product or service solves for your chosen target market(s), write the corresponding benefit down. If you’ve identified two or more target markets, it is highly likely you will have one UPB for each target market (which are likely to be different from each other).
9. Magic Wand - If you could wave a magic wand and give your customers and target market one wish, what would they want most? Some of the greatest businesses in the world were founded on such thinking. For example, Microsoft was built on this premise… “to make the computer accessible and easy-to-use for everyone.”In an inexpensive way, can you reposition your basic offer in order to meet the target market’s major need?
10. THE Biggest, Most Important Benefit - This final method is relatively simple. You need to identify every single feature of your product or service, together with how you operate as a business and how you interact with your customers. Having written them down you then need to convert each of these features into benefits. Once you have your list of benefits you then need to put them in order, with the most potent one at the top. If this is powerful then the major benefit of the product or service will be the Unique Perceived Benefit.
A good example of this is the ‘Tech-ni-fold Tri-Creaser’. The major benefit of the Tri-creaser is that it ‘totally eliminates fibre-cracking’. This benefit on its own is so powerful it became the Unique Perceived Benefit. It was further strengthened by adding the word ‘guaranteed’ to it…
“Totally Eliminates Fibre-Cracking – Guaranteed”
Now to you and us this means very little, but to printers and print finishers this means everything!
A VERY IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT USING THE LOWEST PRICE AS THE UPB –NEVER DO IT
Guaranteeing the lowest price has been used as a UPB for many businesses in virtually every industry. Right now, many more businesses are trying to ‘buy’ customers.
However, cutting profit margins too deeply is rarely healthy for a business. So, unfortunately, many who have chosen low price for a UPB are no longer in business or are struggling to make ends meet. The philosophy is low margins, but high volume. This is a very difficult model to adopt successfully for most businesses.We NEVER recommend setting your stall out to be the cheapest. There is always someone who will undercut you. So let’s recap...
Here are the key learning points from this tutorial...
1. First... you must differentiate your business from your competition. Otherwise price becomes the only way a customer can differentiate between you and your competitors and you move away from a value based sell towards a commodity sell.
2. Second... creating your own UPB is in practice quite challenging, but you can do it with our 10 different suggestions.
3. Third... your UPB must be focused on your target market.
4. And fourth... you can get the simple step-by-step system for creating your UPB when you join the BGS Vault. For more details, simply enter your name and e-mail address in the boxes on the right of this page and watch the video presentation. (Note that as a client of this firm you can have immediate and free access to the Business Growth System Vault. It’s valued at over $6,000 per annum and to get access just contact the office today).
Now please DOWNLOAD the ‘One Page Action Plan’ that accompanies this tutorial and start putting together your UPB.
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