What do you really sell?

Over the next few weeks, as we head towards 2012, I’m going to write a series of posts that are designed to get you thinking about your business in a new/fresh way.  I’m going to ask a single question in each post — but I’m warning you, these aren’t slam dunk questions.

I’m hopeful that as you ponder my question — it will give you some ideas for making 2012 a break out year for your organization.  If nothing else — this exercise should fine tune some of your marketing efforts.

What do you really sell? Do you understand what your customers are really buying?  Odds are, it’s much more than the “thing” you sell, whether that be a pair of glasses or accounting services.  Look beyond the tangible or what you list on an invoice.

Do you really sell peace of mind?  Or a competitive edge?  Are your customers’ buying the reassurance of your years of experience or your ability to nudge them out of their comfort zone?

Before you can effectively help someone buy – you need to actually understand what you’re selling.

If your honest answer is “I’m not sure” then it’s time to break out the trusty telephone and invite some of your best clients (the ones you’d like to replicate all day long) to lunch.  Ask them why they buy from you.  What is the ultimate value you provide to them?  Why would they tell your competitor “no thanks” even if they offered a bargain basement price?

You will be amazed at what you hear.  We’ve done this over the years at MMG and heard things like:

  • “Because I know you won’t have your hand in my pocket all of the time.”
  • “You don’t just preach social media, you guys actually do it.”
  • “I don’t think they’d care as much about our business as your team does.  You all act like you own the joint.”
  • And one of my favorites was “Because I don’t just need an agency, I need a thinking partner.”

Can you see how those answers would alter the way we market our agency?  Do you recognize some client worries/fears in those responses?

You’ll find your clients’ answers to be even more insightful because you’ll get to have the follow up conversation as well. Listen so hard it hurts.  The learning will be huge!

And in the end, you will know exactly what you sell!

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