After you’ve been running a business for three, six, ten, years, you certainly know what your customers want to hear. You know the buzzwords, their concerns, and their needs. So you tailor the messages in your communications to address their problems.
When you meet them and give your sales pitch, or create your website, you know exactly what they want to hear. Stuff like low prices, great service, expertise, satisfied customers, etc. So that’s what you stress.
But your problems begin when you make promises based on what customers want, rather than what you are actually best able to do for them. So instead of suggesting to them what they might actually need, you just tell them what they think they need. I call this giving lip service, rather than real service. At best, it tends to sound generic. At worst, it just isn’t true.
How much easier—and better—to concentrate on your actual strengths, knowledge and differences. Talk up what you might actually be able to do for them, even if they might not have verbalized that need.
Henry Ford famously (though perhaps never actually) said, “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.” Meaning, what your customers say they need from you and what you might actually deliver to help them are two different animals. Certainly, it is not as easy a sale, at least the first time you suggest something outside their comfort zone. But if you truly know their business, and understand their problems based on your experience, your observations, or even your gut, don’t say what they want to hear. Tell them what they need to know.
Got the idea?