Farquharson/Tedesco on Business Development: Information Differentiates II

Continuing the conversation started last month on the subject of positioning yourself as an information provider, let’s look at a second objection: “But I’m not an expert. Heck, I can’t even market myself and my company!” Okay! Let’s look at that…

Four More Ways to Differentiate Yourself Through Information

Tell success stories in challenge/solutions/results format.

If the people on your target list want to join your other happy clients, try telling stories of how you’ve helped others: overcome formidable challenges; create awesome communication solutions; and experience crazy good results.

Ah, clever grasshoppers you are. You recognize that this is the tried and true challenge-solutions-results formula for case studies. You got it now. Informative case studies are nothing more than happy stories!

Your prospects want to know how your customers went from needing more sales leads; funds for a new addition; an employee handbook that doesn’t stinkaroo; or a new media kit to let the marketplace know about a firm’s awesomeness to: we blew through our sales target this quarter; we raised $250,000! Construction starts in two weeks; my boss told me “fabulous job on the handbook; and awesome press coverage.

Think of awesome examples of how your customers went from need to concept to physical form to success. Throw in a few roadblocks—low budget, mean boss, starting the job at a different print shop—and you’ve got the makings of a thriller!

Draft your own testimonials for your clients to sign.

Ask your clients to give you testimonial statements. They will want to. Whether they actually will or not is the challenge.

Trick of the trade: Once they say yes, offer to draft something for them. This saves you asking this awkward question, “Get around to writing my testimonial yet?”

Most people hate writing! Make it easy for them. Most will appreciate the offer. After all, they want to see you succeed!

As a 30 year sales veteran, Bill has the perspective of a been-there, done-that sales rep in the commercial print arena. Following sales fundamentals and giving unapologetically "old school" advice, he writes and speaks in an entertaining fashion to make his points to sales people and owners who sell. "Bill Farquharson will drive your sales momentum."
T.J. Tedesco is a sales growth, business strategy, marketing and PR consultant operating at the intersection of clear vision, compelling content and effective outreach practices. For nearly two decades, T.J. has been an independent consultant and sales growth team leader. Previously, he sold commercial printing, graphic arts machinery and supplies, and finishing and bindery services. T.J. helps North American companies with content development, Web and print design leadership, nurture marketing programs, sales coaching, sales team alignment and business strategy. Since 1996, T.J. has worked with more than 100 clients on retainer, 80 percent in the graphic arts industry. T.J. is author of "Win Top-of-Mind Positioning," "Playbook for Selling Success in the Graphic Arts Industry," "Fire! How Marketing Got Hot," "Direct Mail Pal" and four more books published by PIA. He can be reached at (301) 404-2244 or tj@tjtedesco.com.
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