September 30, 2014

Sales and Marketing Advice for Florida business

What can your business do that others can't?

Focus on unique solutions to win new business.

Ron Stein | 1/13/2013

There’s one absolute you can count on in marketing -- people are never moved when you claim that “we’re the best at what we do”. They only care about what you can do for them that no one else can.

The problem with the “we are better” syndrome is threefold -- it’s “me” focused, there’s nothing that points to why there’s a difference, and it doesn’t say how the buyer’s condition is improved.

But that’s exactly what most marketing messages boast today. We have the best customer service. Our technology is the best available. We give you the best value for your money.

So what!

Your audience already knows that fast is better than slow; more is better than less; pleasure is better than pain; and strength is better than weakness. Better is only better if it is different and makes someone’s life better -- and you can prove it.

It’s not all about you. There nothing more important to a buyer than their problem and the fix for it. That’s the only focus that counts. If you’ve done your homework and know who your perfect customer is, then it’s easy to zoom in on them and what they consider important. It starts with a customer-centric attitude and words that reflect that. Drop I, me, and we. Believing that your company is in the front of the pack in your industry is nice, but why should your audience believe you? Give prospects a reason to trust you by keeping the emphasis on where it matters -- them.

Show clear competitive differentiation. Of course your products or services are superior to your competitors. Yet simply saying that you provide better service or faster delivery isn’t very compelling. It’s your responsibility to show the unequalled benefits of doing business with your company. Let people know what you do for them in concrete terms and how it’s clearly different from what others offer in your industry. Express it in the language of your audience. Show your difference, make it relevant to your prospect’s issues, and prove the tangible value. This is why people will ultimately do business with your company.

Have great message alignment. Let’s circle back to your ideal customer for a moment. Every point you make and every advantage you insist on need to be in lock step with your target audience. This should be obvious, yet it’s amazing how many companies push aspects of their offering that are not true benefits to their ideal customer. Worse is when there isn’t a well thought out marketing message at all. You may be proud of a particular characteristic of your product or service, but if it’s meaningless to you prospect your message loses impact. Create a marketing message by establishing how you uniquely solve your prospect’s problems and the results they can expect.

People are only concerned about their specific problems. But that’s not enough to spin a marketing strategy around. You must also be different in ways that matter to your prospects. If your marketing doesn’t speak to that, you’ll look just like your competitors.

Let your audience know exactly what you can do for them that no one else can. You’ll grow your business and drive more revenue.


Read earlier columns from Florida Trend's business coach, Ron Stein
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Ron Stein is the founder and President of FastPath Marketing (www.marketing-strategies-guide.com). He has more than 20 years experience in sales, marketing, and business development, working positions ranging from salesman to vice president of sales and marketing to CEO of startups with industry leaders such as Motorola, VideoServer, Paradyne, and SercoNet. Ron is a member of the advisory team at the Tampa Bay Innovation Center, a nationally recognized entrepreneurial and startup accelerator for the state of Florida. He can be reached at 727-398-1855 or Ron@FastPathMarketing.com

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