Stop Competing on Price, Start Competing on Value
To be blunt, for customers usually, there are not many significant differences between suppliers. Occasionally, you have a special product or service that no-one else has because it's protected by patent or special knowledge. Even then, the advantage lasts for a limited time. So, most of your time you compete with similar products and services.
Of course, there are small differences, but these differences are few in an avalanche of information on your products and services. If we collected the opinions of your people who engage with your customers, would they agree on what the differences are that you have and the customer's value? Based on our experience, very unlikely. So, how can you expect your customers to understand these small differences?
Well if competing services look the same, then they are a commodity. When customers buy a commodity, they buy on only one factor: price.
And do you want to compete on price? Most organisations don't want to compete on price. But they argue that's all the customer values. Sometimes that's true. But in our experience usually, it's not true.
To stop competing on price, start competing on value. First, discover where there are differences between you and your competitors. Lock up some of your best people for a couple of days with the right tools, and you will have an estimate of where the differences are and how you can present these differences. Go out and test your first estimate with customers. You'll be surprised at how much agreement your customers have with your first estimate.
Second, quantify the value your service delivers. Turn vague platitudes or motherhood statements into money and time: costs saved, revenue created or time saved. Presenting your services with value in dollars or days makes the value concrete. Making your value concrete is far more persuasive than abstract motherhood statements. Tom Cruise, in the movie, Jerry Maguire says it succinctly, "Show me the money!"