Earlier in my blog we looked at the importance of showing that you are different to your competitors – of having what is known as a Unique Selling Proposition USP) for your business (See Tip 1).
The reason for this is, of course, to help potential customers to answer the big question in their minds: “Why should I buy from you, rather than from someone else?”
As we have seen, their process of making a purchase decision is much more complex than just plumping for the cheapest – even in the today’s internet environment where price comparison is at everyone’s fingertips (See Tip 2).
Knowing what your customers actually want, and what they fear, are key to understanding the thinking behind that purchase process and, therefore, to defining how you should position your company, products and services.
But there is a third and crucial part to this equation that you need to apply before you can truly define how you differ from your competitors in such a way as to appeal to the customers you are targetting – the emotional trigger!
Emotions are not something we see as part of making a hard-headed business decision, yet in nearly every case they are an influencing factor that can tip the balance between a sale going to you, or to a competitor.
What are these emotions and how do we uncover them?
The emotions can be anything from joy to anger, from relief to frustration because your customers are (hopefully!) human after all – although this can easily be forgotten as you struggle to complete a 100 page tender document late at night, or deal with yet another dead end enquiry!
So what emotions do your current customers have about you and your company that gave them the desire to buy from you in the first place, and (hopefully, again!) to keep coming back for more?
The easiest way to uncover this is simply to look at their testimonials – what they say about you to you and to others.
Gathering testimonials is a vital part of your marketing programme we will deal with in a future blog, however we will assume here that you have feedback from your customers in some form.
Now have a careful look at them.
What are they really saying about you and your company?
What is it that they like about what you do?
What are the emotional words they use, and why?
These are the triggers you have managed to pull, possibly without even realising it, that have made them choose you over your competitors – and which you can use to encourage potential customers to do the same.
It might be that your staff go the extra mile, or that your product solves a problem for them that others have failed to do, or that you turn around orders exceptionally quickly – whatever it is it has put a smile on their faces and made them feel good about you and your company.
HOW ABOUT AN EXAMPLE?
Sometimes this can be the blindingly obvious.
When I went through this exercise with one of my clients, a husband and wife team, we found that their customers were consistently delighted that they delivered on time and on budget.
“Of course we do,” they told me somewhat nonplussed. “That’s what we do every day – situation normal. There are no surprises here.”
What they had not realised was that, what they took for granted was what their customers saw as differentiating them from their competitors who were less reliable and often ran over budget.
Both being on time and on budget meant the difference between being delighted or disappointed as far as the customers were concerned – this then was their emotional trigger.
My clients have now made ‘We deliver on time and on budget’ the key message in their marketing – and it strikes a real chord with their prospective customers.
What are YOUR company’s emotional triggers?!
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