“At the end of the day, it’s about quality!” shouts the company CEO. Wrong! At the beginning of the day, it’s about quality. At the end of the day, it’s about competitive advantage! Producing and providing high-quality products and services are merely the cost of entry into today’s marketplace. Everybody is good, so you have to be good as well.
Winning the business today is about adding value. It’s about not merely being marginally better, but being a clearly better choice in a sea of good choices. It’s about preferability, deeper connection, astonishing ease of doing business, hyper-convenience, remarkable innovation, tangibly superior quality, and of course, Visibility.
As I travel the world speaking and working with entrepreneurs, CEOs, sales and leadership teams and their organizations, one of the most deeply-ingrained beliefs that they share is that they are great and most of their competitors are simply not as good. There is a pervasive belief that their competitors consistently underperform and are somehow fooling their customers and prospects. “The difference with us,” leaders will say with a measure of indignation, “is that we actually do what we say we will do!”
Really?? Do you honestly believe that?! How on God’s green Earth are your competitors still in business when they supposedly aren’t doing what they say they will do? Ridiculous!
Seriously people, it’s time for a reality check! Your competitors are good — really good!! Do you know why people do business with your competitors? Because they want to! Because they like them. Because they chose them. (Instead of choosing you!) You had better figure out why if you want to survive and grow.
Your competitors work hard, listen to their customers, care about quality, work to thrill their clients, treat them well and live up to their promises. Everyday, your competitors are providing livelihoods for their employees, forging meaningful relationships with their customers, working long hours and getting better all the time. And you? To be fair, you might be doing much of the same, but face it — you are just another in a long list of choices for your prospective customers.
It has often been said that the first step to overcoming a problem is to admit that you have one. The problem is that you are likely a little overly enamored with yourself. Sorry, if you find that insulting. This is not about believing in yourself and following your dreams. I’m referring to your business. You are likely very good at what you do, but you’re not that good. You haven’t created the cure for cancer that taste like chocolate, or solved the cold-fusion conundrum. If you were that good, you wouldn’t need to market your talents, company, products or services. To be fair, none of us
are that good. You need to market. And to market effectively, you need to understand both your customers and your competitors.
-David Avrin, CSP
Excerpted from the new book: Visibility Marketing (2016 Career Press) www.VisibilityMarketingBook.com