by Tom Grandy
Eating cottage cheese will obviously not help you lose weight. Why? Well look around, only fat people seem to eat it! Now, is that totally true? Of course not; there are a lot of people who love cottage cheese, I just don’t happen to be one of them.
So what does eating cottage cheese have to do with running a profitable business? Before I answer that let me share one more real-life example and you just might figure it out. One of my responsibilities at Grandy & Associates is to line up speakers/content for our Profit University Audio Series that features a different business topic by a different national speaker each month. Sometimes I scan websites of potential speakers to see if they have material that might be suitable for the series. Like most reading this article, I had heard of Zig Zigler my whole life. He died in 2012 but was one of the best known motivational speakers in the country and perhaps the world.
Upon reviewing his website, as you might have expected, there is a long list of presentation titles. It wasn’t long before one of the titles caught my attention. The title was Biscuits Fleas and Pump Handles. I’m thinking to myself, “What in the world do those things have in common?” After a few clicks on the keyboard I had viewed the summary and purchased the CD. The presentation was outstanding, but guess what? The content was on goal setting. After receiving permission from the Zigler organization to use the material it became this month’s presentation for the Profit University Audio Series.
What do cottage cheese and biscuits, fleas and pump handles have in common? You guessed it; they all got your attention. In the case of Zig Zigler’s presentation I heard an outstanding presentation that provided some really valuable tips on how to set and achieve goals. If I had reviewed the topic list on Zig’s website and come across a presentation entitled “Six Ways to Set and Achieve Goals” I seriously doubt I would have explored the content and it would surely not be this month’s featured presentation. The above title was not unique. There are a limitless number of presentations on goal setting but Zig’s title caught my attention.
The point is: What do you promote about your company? Before a potential customer becomes a real customer you have to initiate a contact and/or have a conversation. What are you saying about your company that makes it unique from all the rest? What catches your potential customers attention enough for them to contact you? Do the following phrases sound familiar?
- 73 years of combined experience
- Great customer service
- Family owned and operated
- We carry XYZ equipment
- Lowest price in town (if you want to go out of business quick, use this one)
With very little effort most reading this article could add another dozen topics to the list. Why? Because a huge number of trades companies use them. There were no fleas or pump handles to get your attention, right?
What is “really” going to get your potential new customers attention? Below are a few thoughts to ponder on:
Our most efficient XYZ system can be yours for only $XXX/month (Remember what made Sears famous years ago? You could buy nearly anything for $25/month)
- We know the history of your equipment (Promote how you record every call, what repairs were done, and which technician worked on the system)
- No extra charge for after hours or weekend calls (With proper personnel scheduling, and accurate pricing that absorbs the after-hours cost, this can be a reality)
- Relationships are important! (Promote your efforts to send the same technician to the same location as often as possible)
- You will KNOW when the technician is on the way (Put systems in place that allow the service customer to be notified by email, text, or phone call when the technician is within 15 minutes of arrival)
Get the point? Promote things that show your company is unique! Think about what makes your company different…from the customer’s standpoint? You can’t catch a fish without bait and you can’t create a new customer until you get their attention. Unless you can capture the potential customer’s attention with some kind of unique offering you will never even have the opportunity to add them to your customer base. If you want to increase your customer base–it’s time to think outside of the box!