When speaking with prospective clients, explaining your differences as “better” than others seems logical. After all, isn’t that why someone would choose us and our business over someone else – because we’re the better business? However, this method is not always effective.
For instance, if someone asks why they should do business with you as opposed to the firm across the street – you begin to give them your list of “betters.” You may not say it by using the word better, but it sounds like you have… better communication, better services, better products, better affiliates that you work with, etc. And the problem with inferring “better” is that the consumer doesn’t believe it. We don’t believe that something will actually be better!
Think of yourself going to the grocery store and heading down the laundry detergent aisle. If you see a jug of Tide detergent with a big “NEW AND IMPROVED” on it, do you immediately buy it because you are sure that now, finally, your clothes will get cleaner? No, of course not! We don’t actually believe it will be that much better. And it’s risky buying a different laundry detergent (certainly not as risky as switching financial advisors – ah, but you get the point). So how can you communicate that you’re the best choice without pointing out how you do things better than others?
What we need to be is different. If we can, we need to share what is truly unique about what we do – not compare ourselves to others. So, what is unique about you? I would say that there is one thing unique about your firm, and it’s the people inside. The founder, lead advisor, portfolio manager, and staff make the company truly unique. These people can’t be acquired somewhere else. And, 80% of the reason someone chooses your firm is because of you – not your products. In fact, they may not even know specifically which products they want until long after they say yes to doing business.
So, are you ready to start talking about what’s most unique about your firm?
Great piece Maribeth. Rings true. I met and heard you this summer in Dallas at the 1st Global event. Thanks for the insight !
Thanks Steven! Better is just not good enough anymore!