I spend the majority of my time helping my clients get better at marketing & selling their services. We look at marketing strategies, lead generation techniques, sales processes and skills. The “how” of business development, if you like.
So sometimes it's easy to forget the “what”. The stuff you're actually selling. And the fact that the most important thing is to have really great services to sell.
Not only that, but we need to have a range of services too – and they need to be configured and positioned in meaningful terms for our clients.
It's a problem particularly prevalent amongst consultants, coaches and trainers. Our “product” is so flexible and configurable that we tend to only describe one generic service: we'll “figure out what your problems are and fix 'em”.
Unfortunately, we often assume too much. We're experts in our capabilities: we know how much they can be tailored, how we can tweak them to exactly meet our clients' needs. Our clients however, aren't so expert. They often can't tell whether we can help them with their problems and opportunities or not.
What we usually do is bang away trying to sell the same generic service using multiple, different marketing & sales approaches. What we should be doing is changing what we're offering. Getting more specific. Figuring out the different benefits that could be achieved and packaging up a service for each one.
Next time you're reviewing your marketing & sales approaches, consider whether your time might not be better spent reviewing your services instead and better matching them to what your clients really want.