Do You Provide for the Market Demand or Do You Educate the Market?

No matter if you are selling products or services, you can’t ignore the market’s demand. No way!

Others, more famous than you, from telecom or from classic, non digital photography, have ignored the market and now we talk about them in past tense.

The service differentiator can make things simple for the client when it comes to choosing among more competitors.

market demand

Foto Unsplash

Nowadays customers are more knowledgeable than ever and a shallow presentation won’t help you win.

For example, adapting to the technology evolution is more like an alignment than an innovation. You can try to tell your customers that 128 kb/s is a good browsing speed when the needs and capabilities of modern devices will show you the door out of the market immediately.

The customers have very clear expectations of what you should provide and the simple fact that you kept your word will only mean that you’ve done your job.

If you provide more than other competitors, you have greater chance to win market share or even become a trendsetter for the industry you perform in.

Your behavior as service end-user and not only is directly influenced by the person providing that service.

What can you do as a service provider:

  • Know thy market;
  • Know thy customers: who are they, what they do, what do their parents do (no, not really :), what do they want to buy, why do they want to buy, when they usually buy, how do they buy, how much are they willing to spend, what would make them buy from you, what are their expectations, what do they think of you and not last why they should buy from you;
  • Ask for a feedback and see if changes are required. If you know how to really listen, not just in a politically correct way such as “We appreciate the feedback, your message is very important to us. We’ll get back to you sometime in the next century!”;
  • Provide value, not necessary at low prices;
  • Understand the reasons why the customer is currently using the services of another provider and what does he like about this collaboration. Yes, shocking as it may sound, if you haven’t revolutionized the market, your customer may  work with the competition;
  • The services you provide should be easy to use/access and you must have electronic solutions that meet customer needs;
  • You should have excellent and friendly customer service, one that’s truly empowered to offer feasible solutions, not the familiar “this is our company policies, there is nothing I can do…”;
  • Offer something unique to your niche, something that the competition cannot replicate;
  • Offer some value added consultancy for the domain you’re expert in. The customer will see you as a reliable partner because what you offer is also part of his business;
  • Show that you also behave differently from the competition;
  • Settle a collaboration relationship, know their specific needs;
  • Establish from the start what can you offer, without exaggerations, don’t create false hope;
  • Keep your promises and a little more. The customer will not remember a “standard” service;
  • Personalize as much as possible the customer experience;
  • Proactively admit it in case you didn’t provide what was promised and offer compensation solutions;
  • Provide more options for the customers and by that I don’t mean pushing other products from the start (cross-selling), but an alternative to the initial proposition;
  • Get as much feedback as you can after the first time the customer used your services in order to give thanks and also to count your achievements and see what can be improved.

„Underpromise; overdeliver.” Tom Peters

The customer satisfaction starts when you begin to understand what are their expectations and how can you make a difference. It doesn’t have to be fabulous, breathtaking, even the small things can make a difference. Some may come to you just because you created a precedent.

And last, but not least,, the biggest differentiator is the employee’s behavior. The manager’s role is to choose those that can and will perform according to expectations in front of the customers, to support and empower them accordingly.

If you don’t provide additional value when compared to the competition, the customer won’t come to you, the company will suffer and sooner or later, you will suffer as well.

 

Good luck differentiating!