We all have competition and even when we don’t have competitors, we have competition. How can we have competition when we don’t have competitors? Competitors give your prospects choices and even when you don’t have a competitor, the prospect still has choices —whether to buy what you’re selling or go without.
In effect, you are competing with the prospect’s option of doing nothing and, while this is not often the case, it can and does happen. It’s much more common for salespeople to be competing against another company for the prospect’s attention and business. Whatever the case, you want to be properly prepared to sell against the competition.
A powerful selling tool that every salesperson should have at his or her fingertips that must be developed and fine-tuned before it can be used effectively is Differential Competitive Advantage (DCA).
It is used to contrast your uniqueness with a particular competitor. It is used when you know which competitor(s) your prospect is considering and usually consists of no more than two contrasting points which cause you to stand out over the competition.
Your DCA is that unique quality that sets you apart from your competition. It should be the quality that comes first to mind when people think about you and your business — the way people think of speed when they think of Ferrari, of luxury when they think of Rolls Royce, and of economy when they think of Hyundai.
Your DCA may come from doing things more quickly, less expensively, more skilfully or more thoroughly than any of your competitors. It may come from having more experience, more specific knowledge or a greater range of products. It may be your unique market position or your ability to provide simple solutions to complex problems.
Whatever it is, it should enable you to meet your customer’s needs in a way no one else can quite match. Identify it and promote it and you will increase your sales effectiveness.
For more information on training and coaching to develop DCA and other sales skills, please refer to The Right Skills.
Salesforce Training & Consulting is a professional sales training firm and registered Salesforce.com Consulting Partner based in Toronto, with offices in Boston and Chicago, providing sales coaching, sales management consulting, salesforce implementation, sales training and sales personnel assessments.