sales competitionThe competition is clamoring for your customers and your piece of the market. In addition, customers have tight budgets and business purchasers scrutinize expenditures like never before; winning over new customers and upselling old ones has become more challenging.  Differences in how you engage your customers have become a critical skill to master.  You need to understand how are you different compared to your competitors?

 

The Message

The art for any organization seeking differentiation is a two-step process.  First, the ability to connect to the most important needs of the customers. Focus resources on ideas that will be noticed by customers. This will produce the greatest impact on top-line revenue.  Secondly, know how your competition engages your customers.

 

In this post, we will examine how you can identify competitor gaps.  You can also download The Competitor Gap Analyzer.  The tool will help you understand the gap between buyer, competition, and your organization.  You can then build messaging that resonates with decision makers inside your target accounts.  Doing this effectively can make the difference in hitting your number.

 

Mystery Shop

By mystery shopping competitors, you are providing useful information in creating a smart strategy.  Learning about competitors’ activities can give insights into what works and what does not.  Below are five areas you should focus on:

 

  1. Segments– Are competitors focusing their content efforts on just one customer segment at a time?  Maybe they are casting a wide net.  If so where do the opportunities lie?   You have to determine which segments represent the greatest opportunity.  This customer should then serve as the model for your ideal customer profile.  Look at their website and see who their target audience is?  Then decide how to message to that specific audience.
  2. Decision Makers– Once you know your target audience, know the market problems of your buyers.  Do your competitors talk about products and features or market problems?  Knowing who your buyers are, you need to understand what they care about; and what their path to making a purchase looks like.  Each buying influence has a different objective.  Understand how your competitors write to your buying influences.
  3. Social Presence– 93% of marketers say they use social media for business.  In addition, every second two new members join LinkedIn.  Businesses must find target audiences on social media.  Build social channels, listen to conversations and simply know where potential clients consume content.  Identifying the right channels to tune into can generate significant revenue lifts.  Have you checked your marketing strategy?  Does it include a social media strategy?
  4. Lead Management– Get your head around which points throughout the buyer journey you need to influence.  Drive conversions and move them through the sales funnel.  Data generated in this process can measure the  efficiency of marketing and sales.  How do your competitors respond to inquiries?  How fast do they reach out?  Do they flood sales with leads or is there a way to qualify?  All these factors could potentially give you a competitive advantage if structured correctly.
  5. Sales Process– A well-thought-out sales process include seller and buyer alignment.  You can then standardize customer interaction during sales with scalable revenue generation.  If you have a large percent of “no decision”, this is not happening.  How do your competitors approach your customers?  Do you commonly hear “You are all the same?” If so, you are a commodity and at the mercy of purchasing.

 

Differentiation is delivering to customers something, which they value, that competitors do not have. You should seize the opportunity to differentiate at every customer contact point.  Download The Competitor Gap Analyzer This tool will help develop a value wedge between you and the competition.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Andrew Urteaga

Helps motivate clients to design and implement new sales and marketing strategies so that they stay on track to make their number.
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Clients describe Andrew as an industry thought leader. He has deep experience as an executive, having served in multiple positions as a sales leader, with a track record of outstanding performance in F500 companies.

 

Prior to joining SBI, Andrew held the position of VP of Sales at Avis Budget Group where he was responsible for sales and marketing leadership. He also held a variety of positions with Cintas Corporation, a Fortune 500 multi-national company, including key quota carrying positions in the sales force from sales rep through to executive leadership.

 

Andrew’s work has included everything from lead generation, campaign planning and sales process to designing complete sales management coaching programs and new compensation plans.

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