Show me the difference

By Stuart 11 years ago1 Comment

Over the last few weeks, I’ve spent quite a lot of time giving advice to business owners on making their businesses stronger, particularly during these tough times.

When we’ve sat down and talked, I’ve asked them all the same question, “so why should I buy from you?”

Amongst the variety of replies I’ve heard, the question of service seems to crop up time and time again.  “we offer a better service” is often the response to the question, but exactly what is the better service they are offering?  After all, if you look at most marketing material there’s a lot of talk about better service, but what do they really mean? – are they faster, cheaper, better presented?

Most don’t really know the answer to this and wrap it up by saying “we give a personal service to all our clients”.  I’m sure they are right and they do exactly that, but how about their competitors?  Don’t they do the same thing?, or least say they do.  After all, can you really be the only business in your sector that behaves in this way?


I don’t think that you can really just tell a customer that you are different and expect them to believe it – you have to demonstrate it.  You need to both look and behave differently to the guy down the road.  After all, if you don’t have a tangible differentiator, then all you can compete on is price and I’ll cover why that road leads to a dead end in a future post.

What tangible things can we think of that makes a business really different?  They don’t have to be large things, just things that customers remember and value.  However, they do have to be relevant to your  core business offering!  For example, there’s no point me giving away free chocolate with every tax return done.  It’s different, but doesn’t really add value to the client and I doubt whether they’d choose us to prepare next year’s return, just on that basis!

So, what makes your business different?

  General BusinessProfit Improvement
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