Getting heard and accepted in this noisy, crowded, ever-changing marketplace has never been harder.
At the same time, C. Richard Weylman says buyers today are cautious, skeptical, and solution-driven as never before.
He adds that “they have been burned by the market, misled by politicians, and pushed into a tough financial corner. When customers are deciding to buy, they have one focus: they want to know how doing business with you will be good for them.”
According to Weylman every customer asks — long before they engage:
- Why should I do business or even inquire with this company?
- Are they all about themselves or do they actually know and really understand why I want to make a purchase?
- Most important, will they fulfill what I want and am looking for?”
Continued Weylman, “any small business leader may assume they are making it clear to prospective customers why they should buy from his or her company.”
He points out that business leaders think people should do business with them because they want and value things like the enterprise’s:
- good service
- twenty years of experience
- solid returns
- great selection of products and services
- clear communications
- honest approach
He says the list goes on and on but in fact most business has its commendable attributes — but many do not engage with today’s buyer.
Here’s Weylman’s truth about that, however: What the company does or who its people are or how they do it is not the answer to the question, Why should I do business with this company or firm?
The company’s attributes or features don’t answer the why question because they don’t communicate from the buyer’s perspective, according to Weylman..
He continues by arguing this seller-centric focus on attributes or features is ubiquitous in today’s branding, promotions, and sales presentations.
“Most businesses are focused on their own perspective as the seller versus what is needed in today’s marketplace: a focus on the customer’s language and perspective,” he adds.
As Weylman simply puts it “they are business- or product-centric, not customer-centric. They convey the qualifications of the company or specifications of its products, but in no way do these messages connect emotionally or functionally with potential buyers. Seller-centricity may have worked in the past, but today it reduces perceived value, exacerbates negative perceptions, and invites competitive comparison.”
Here is Weylman ‘s suggested require action: Ask a client or customer to look at your promotional materials and ask them; “Are they more about what we offer or more about what we do for you?”
C. Richard Weylman, CSP, CPAE, is the author of the best -selling book, The Power of Why: Breaking Out in a Competitive Marketplace. Visit his website for more information at www.RichardWeylman.com