My Unique Selling Point:
I am a Producer/script writer/media trainer who also provides media content (Development communication and marketing of companies, goods and services) among other things i do. My selling point according to an organization i work with (ARDA) a development and behavioral change communication Non-governmental organization, is that they like my “quick response” and “quality work”. While feeling good about this endorsement It occurred to me that we sometimes don’t pay attention to our unique selling point as service providers or business people. I therefore decided to share my thoughts and experience on how to harness our selling points and also learn from others. So If you want to take your business to the next level you might want to consider these few tips I want to share.
Learning from others
Let me first paint a picture with this personal observation of a business woman whom I will call Bolanle(Not real name).
Bolanle owns a shop adjacency to a major road in my neighborhood. Her shop is a sizeable one where she sells drinks in cartons and crates; beverages of all sorts; bread and various household goods. Sales boys and girls help Bolanle attend to customers which means that she has all the help she needed…she is the CEO/Madam of her business. In other words she needn’t lift a finger; all she had to do was sit and dish out instructions. In fact Bolanle is a woman with a big stature who looked like she couldn’t move smartly because of her weight. But on the contrary she amazes me with her vigor and energy. Whether it is a day I am purchasing goods or simply just passing by, Bolanle is on her feet in her jeans and t-shirt or native skirt and blouse busy attending to customers alongside her sales boys and girls.
In my native tongue we refer to such a person as “Akikanju obirin to loyoya”, meaning a hardworking and friendly woman. Bolanle is a friendly and warm business woman who is very polite. She would greet and thank you for patronizing her every time you showed up at her shop. The Interesting thing is that there is no difference in her treatment of customers; whether you are buying a N50 item or N10, 000 worth of goods, she is smiling away and making you feel special about patronizing her business.
Why would I not come back again and again to purchase what I need at her shop? In fact my family and I would drive pass other shop owners along our route to buy from Bolanle.
Her Selling Point:
Politeness, Friendliness, charm, humility- ability to stand up from her “madam chair” and attend to customers alongside her employees; consistency and continuous special treatment of customers.
Many seamstress/ Fashion designer/Tailor do not meet the deadline given to their clients to make a garment. One Tailor I patronized once required about 3weeks maximum to make a dress. For me this was too long but at least she was honest up front. However she might want to improve on time of delivery for people who want their garments made faster. So if you are a seamstress deliver on time and don’t make promises you can’t keep.
• Don’t take more cloths than you can manage to sew within the different deadlines just because you don’t want to loose money.
• Don’t give a time frame you cannot meet
• If you want to handle more cloths/business then you might want consider expanding…employ more hands and invest in more trade tools.
Emotional Appeal, key to continuous/improved patronage
Personally I would buy an item that costs more when I am treated nicely and “the seller” has a good sense of humor. It keeps me coming back as well.
When customers keep coming back soon a relationship is formed between customer and service provider. This will inspire friendship and loyalty.
• A Kind, friendly and warm attitude connects with the emotions of customers. And guess what…A lot of people purchase/buy stuff with their emotion. If they feel good in your shop or with your services they’ll keep coming back. They will help spread the word about your business which translates to more customers.
• Rude and unkind treatment send customers scurrying away fast and they may never come back. During a discussion at a business seminar where I was one of the facilitators, the director of the company narrated an unpleasant event at a popular store. She almost always stopped at this store every evening on her way home. On this faithful day the girls on duty treated her badly so much that it struck a terrible cord in her emotion and she vowed never to patronize that store again. Unfortunately the shop owner/manager was not aware that one of their faithful customers had just been chased away.
So if you are a good sales man/service provider or business owner you’ve got to transfer your customer service values/skills and unique selling point to your employees. Train and Re-train plus monitor them. Treat your employees kindly too. When they feel good working for you, it will become easy to treat your customers the same way.
A HAPPY CUSTOMER = MORE PATRONAGE…MORE SALES
Points to note in improving on your patronage/sales
1) What is your unique selling point? Have you given thought to this? If you have not, find out what each of your customer/client like about your services/products or business. Keep doing and improving on it.
2) Be informed about what is happening /trending in your particular industry or business and try new things. If you are not aware, you are going to be out run by another smart business owner.
3) Be open to learning; learn from others: Find out what is working for others and see how you can use it to the advantage of your business/services.
Selling points that get businesses thriving
– Quality work/service or goods. Never compromise on quality and be honest in your dealings. If you deceive a customer one time, you lose him/her and their endorsement forever.
– Promptness. A service delivered on time makes a happy customer.
Laziness/sloppiness and delay in delivery will rob you of current and intending customers. Adebisi A.M
– Care about whether your customer is happy with your services or goods. Have a feedback mechanism.
– Invest in a good public relation (PR) with your customers/client. Don’t only reach out to them in the times when you want them to patronize you. Reach out at festive seasons, their birthdays and so on. I get a birthday wish from my bank every year…feels good.
PRIDE HARMS YOUR BUSINESS – HUMILITY SELLS MORE
Keep doing your best and keep improving.
Photo Credit: LEDingthelife.com
Adebisi Adetunji (C)