You want to make more sales.
You want to communicate your value in a compelling way.
You want to differentiate the advantages of your product or services to close sales.
But, you fear justifying your value effectively to decision makers. You’re not 100% confident in handling strong price pressures.
I know this is the case, for two reasons. No. 1, studies show that the inability to sell value is the main reason salespeople fail to hit sales quota.
No. 2, studies also reveal that justifying value to top decision makers is one of the two biggest fears of B2B salespeople.
Wish I could video joint client-sales calls (for 15 years) because you would see the apprehensive, awkward conversation occurring when B2B salespeople get challenged by customers to make a compelling argument for how their product differs from the competition, and why it matters!
The damage from vagueness and a lack of confidence in selling your value is like the damage weeds can have on a robust garden.
I appreciate the way bestselling author Stephen King describes it:
“If you have one [dandelion] in your lawn, it looks pretty and unique. If you fail to root it out, however, you find five the next day … fifty after that … and then, my brothers and sisters, your lawn is totally, completely, and profligately covered with dandelions. By then you see them for the weeds they really are.”
– Stephen King
Ultimately a sale comes down to how customers interpret your message. You must communicate clearly and confidently if you’re going to be convincing.
Use the following list of 49 Commodity Crushers to create a clear, convincing message of differentiated value to your customer.
Eventually, narrow your differentiators to the main ones.
49 Commodity Crushing Differentiators
- Performance – Dependability
- Performance – Reliability
- Performance – Durability
- Problem Solving
- Problem Prevention
- People – Experience
- People – Craftsmanship
- People – Consistency of performance
- People – Caring
- People – Likeability
- People – Trustworthiness
- People – Accessibility
- People – Ease of doing business
- People – Responsiveness
- People – Communications
- Financing: terms, creative solutions, capital outlays, discounts
- Quality – Assurance & Testing
- Quality – Testing
- Quality – Reputation
- Quality – Material Sourcing
- Ingredients/Formulas or Steps to create and deliver products/services
- Peace of mind assurance
- Field Support
- Storage Processes and Controls,
- Time Savings
- Cost Reduction immediate
- Long-term bottom-line cost
- Track Record
- Product Offering: Variety – sizes, shapes, types, models
- Compliance to specifications
- Compliance with government regulations
- Compliance with industry standards
- Customization or specialization ability
- Salesperson – Expertise, valued insights or experience
- Salesperson – Relationship or Likeability
- Salesperson – Trustworthiness
- Salesperson – Responsiveness
- Salesperson – Accessibility
- HS&E – Health
- HS&E – Safety of employees, safety training, certifications
- HS&E – Environment/climate
- Risk Mitigation
As you narrow your list keep in mind:
- It’s only a value IF it’s a significant, relevant value in the eyes of your customer
- Differentiators must align with your company’s, product’s or services’ strengths
- Differentiators should be linked clearly to each customer’s unique value drivers
You can have a powerful value proposition. Deliver it in a confident, compelling way.
Your product or service may be considered a commodity. However, you must influence your customer to recognize you provide the best overall value for their money.
Experiment: Search the term “zoo poo” or “zoo doo” and you’ll be amazed at the different ways zoos differentiate animal waste. Not to be crass, but if you can differentiate “Crap” you can differentiate anything!
Knowing what truly makes your offer better than the competition and communicating it in terms of how your value improves the customer’s condition, equips you to make sales in any situation.