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The CEO of a major bank once said, “When you have a customer crisis, there is rarely an easy solution—the solution actually lies in how rapidly, energetically, and sincerely you respond to their complaint. The quality of your response is the solution.”

If you can afford to have your brand new warehouse built from the ground up, who are you going to hire to build it? The intelligent answer is simple: a reputable building contractor with happy clients and lots of experience, right? Why on earth would you invest your hard-earned dollars to hire anyone less than a pro?

A prospective customer says, “Tell me about your firm. What’s different or special about you?”

Even the best sales people seem to choke up when they are asked this question. Usually, they spout a bunch of unconvincing statistics, talk about all their offices around the world, and tout their unique, “collaborative” approach—the same stuff anyone else can and does say.

A better response—which will engage your prospect—is to first seek additional information. You might ask, “I’m curious, have you had any past experience with our company?” or, “What particular aspect of our business would you like me to talk about?” Often, prospects have something specific they want to know about you or a doubt they harbor, and this second question will help draw it out. This way, you’ll focus in on what’s most important to that particular customer.

Finally, you should add, "The best way to talk about our firm is to share a couple of examples of recent work we’ve done with clients in your industry. Would that be helpful to you?"

Source: Andrew Sobel is the most widely published author in the world on client loyalty and the capabilities required to build trusted business relationships. Photo: Milda K.

When was the last time you took a look at what really makes you stand out from your competition? Is there any difference at all, or are you competing on price alone? If you are different, what are those unique offerings you provide? For some, the answer to this question is very easy, for others, it’s quite difficult.

But here’s the real question—do you know the answer to these questions, or are you assuming you know the answers to these questions?
Here are four simple tips for making your company stand out:

Women respond enthusiastically to products and services that are tailored to them. They also love to share the news of a specific woman-geared product with their friends. Why? Women today are empowered by connecting with other like-minded women, and marketers today are trying everything to connect with women and influence their buying habits.

Here are a few statistics you may find interesting:

    •    Women comprise of 51.4 percent of the U.S. population.
    •    Women make 85 percent of all brand purchases.
    •    Women are more profitable customers than men because they are loyal to products.
    •    Women account for $7 trillion in consumer and business spending.
    •    In 31 percent of marriages where women work, women out-earn their husbands.
    •    One out of every eleven American women owns a business.
    •    More women than men are getting a post-graduate degree.

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