When it comes to diversifying yourself from the competition, playing on differences might feel like the cliche route to take – that is, if you’re not doing it right. It’s important to highlight what sets you apart from the rest, but generic claims aren’t the way to win over prospective clients. Specifics and examples will get you attention; broad generalizations won’t. Take the time to know how to play to your strengths with each individual client; your services shouldn’t be a one-size-fits-all approach.
Paint a Picture
Anyone can tell a potential client they’re knowledgeable. That’s not hard to do. Dig deeper into your strengths and identify a situation where your skills and strengths allowed you to help a client out. Think of it this way: when you ask your friend about his or her favorite restaurant, there’s usually a good amount of description involved. Be it what’s in their favorite dish, favorite place to sit or how they prepare drinks, it’s rarely ever referred to in general terms like a good menu and reasonably priced. There are plenty of restaurants with those exact attributes, don’t sell yourself in the same way.
Don’t Bad-Mouth the Competition
Keep the focus on you. Talking bad about clients’ other options looks desperate and unprofessional, so don’t play into that game. When you’ve got the potential client in front of you, talk about what you’re able to offer, not what they shouldn’t like about other choices. Let them feel like you’re giving them the option to choose.
Leave Room for Decisions
It’s hard for potential clients to feel comfortable when they feel their decision isn’t really up to them, but what’s being pushed. Offer suggestions, individual approaches that you might take in their position, and an enthusiastic attitude to help, not push. An iffy decision because of pressure might get you a deal, but it’s less likely to return. Remembering an experience – positive or negative – will play into future decision making. Make sure that you’re there to ease the process and be an avenue of advice instead of the pushy salesman they’re likely to run into somewhere else.
In the end, the client is going to go with who they feel is the best choice for them, as they should. If you take the time to really get to know your clients wants and needs and how you’re best able to meet them, there’s a good chance you’ll be their pick.