Most business owners (including your competitors) know that something’s changed from several years ago – but most aren’t sure what…
Here it is:
Buyers now demand more.
Buyers demand memorable experiences.
The cold hard truth:
Simply offering goods and services is no longer enough to compete in today’s market.
(This holds true for every industry)
You see, unless you’re a pioneer – and you’ve created something completely new and unheard of – you’ve got competition (and lots of it).
We are living in a world where everything is becoming commoditized, and it’s becoming harder and harder to stand out.
Everyone’s claiming to be the BEST, have the BEST, offer the BEST, and so forth.
A few years back, Peter Georgescu wrote in Fortune Magazine:
“Commoditization – what I see as the cancer of 21st century commerce – has fueled ferocious price competition, leading to lower prices, margins, and profits for businesses. With price as the only real differentiator, producers are left with a challenge: they must find a way to stand out in the crowd.”
Your customers and clients already assume you have the best quality and the best service – so you need to offer them something different.
Yes, you must have a Unique Advantage Point (that’s critical) – but I’m not just talking about being unique right now, I’m talking about going a level deeper and being memorable.
Sally Hogshead wrote:
“Great brands live in our conversations – not in our advertisements.”
Are you living in a “conversation” with your buyers right now?
Are you giving them something positive about their experience to talk about?
To tap into your buyers’ conversation, you must:
Create an experience
Create a transformation
And when you do this, you create a fan.
A fan is someone who refers new buyers to you… Someone who writes you an endorsement… Someone who will buy everything you have to offer them… Someone who goes to bat for you.
A fan is someone who frequently talks positively about your brand.
I talk with dozens of entrepreneurs every month, and I hear the same customer experience all the time – in every business.
It goes something like this:
Step 1: Customer buys product or service
Step 2: Product or service is delivered as expected
End of story.
The “commodity mindset,” according to former British Airways chairman Sir Colin Marshall, means mistakenly thinking:
“…That a business is merely performing a function — in our case, transporting people from point A to point B on time and at the lowest possible price.”
To go to the next level, you need to ask yourself, how are you:
Creating an experience
Creating a transformation
We’ve been saying for a long time now: you’re not in the business of the product and service you’re selling, you’re in the business of selling the RESULTS your products and services bring people.
To earn a fan, help your buyers achieve the ultimate result they are after.
In Part 2, we’ll dig into how we’ve used these principles to create transformations for our clients – and how innovative companies have created raving customers across a range of industries.