Do you believe you offer the best service, product, or skills in your area… yet maybe you are still not getting the results you are looking for? “Hey!” you say, “What gives? Don’t people want The Best?”.
Well… no. Contrary to popular belief, there is a different reality behind why your customers choose you - or your competitors.
Who Gets Chosen?
Think of McDonalds hamburgers for a moment. They are the top-selling hamburgers in the world. But, are they the best hamburgers? Most people I ask say, “No”! So how did they get to be number one, and chosen so consistently often? Because there is more to success than being the best!
Now, I’m not criticizing the fast food industry; in fact, it has done a superb job of combining two of the most desired things on the planet: Fast and Food.
We like fast food because it meets specific needs. Under certain circumstances, people will trade the absolute element of quality for speed… and if you can put a little “special sauce” on it, well, so much the better.
The point is, McDonalds’ success isn’t about being the best. McDonald's became so successful because their food doesn’t taste bad and is occasionally innovative. But more importantly, they are chosen so often.
“Success isn’t about being the best at what you do, it’s about being consistently chosen to do it.” - David Hutton
Here’s a radical idea I’d like you to consider: There really IS no such thing as The Best! If we could actually agree on what is best, everybody would choose it. But the next day, something else would come along and be the New Best. So, fortunately for us in business, people don’t necessarily choose what’s best… they choose what they are comfortable with.
In other words, people will choose what they FEEL is the best for them. That’s right, I used the “F” word: FEEL! People buy or choose to deal with others based on their feelings. They may know McDonald’s isn’t the best, but they know it is dependable and fast, all the time - which gives them a feeling of trust.
So, logic may get them to you, but they SELECT you based on the feelings they get because of you. And that is the secret to being consistently chosen.
Before we go further, let’s look at the logic part of this. This logic says you must have something to offer something that people want.
To meet this need, you pursue the methods, tactics, and knowledge behind what you do. For example, McDonalds makes decent burgers from good ingredients, cooked to the right temperature and they serve it fast. That’s the logic behind the product and is what initially draws people to them.
So let’s be very clear at this point: You should be as good as you can be at what you do so you can bring value to every exchange.
But simple skill and knowledge are not enough; they are one sided and are just the price of admission. After all, anybody can make hamburgers and, indeed, many are considered better than McDonalds. Yet “Mickie D’s” remains at the top.
Because they know there are other factors at work besides “being the best” and they exploit them. McDonald’s continually asks the one important question:
“What really matters to the people that are our customers?”
This was brought home to me recently while attending a real estate appraisal and valuation course, where we were given many lengthy, tricky, even crazy exercises in figuring gross square footage of a property. The class complained loudly over these seemingly unrealistic problems.
But I reminded my classmates that we must learn all of this so we can quickly and accurately evaluate the properties we are entrusted to sell or buy for our clients. That’s a “no-brainer,” as they say. That’s the science we spoke of a moment ago.
But square footage doesn’t sell a house by itself… it gets you in the door. The fireplace, the backyard or kitchen, the local schools or golf course – that’s what sells. The “feel” of experiencing these things is what people ultimately focus on. It’s all very personal – and far removed from the science.
McDonalds gets this; their advertising combines a simple musical jingle with an emotionally charged slogan, “I’m loving it.”
They know that once you start singing these words and putting it together, mentally, with their hamburgers, they have you. Being the best is no longer important.
Everybody wants the same three things; Love, Money and Prestige. They want to be cared about, have some security and be acknowledged as ‘someone’ in the world. So instead of being the Best, be good. Then ask yourself these questions:
1. Do I know what really matters to the people that are my customers?”
2. Do I have care and concern in my business transactions – and is it detectable?
3. Can I show proof of my integrity, stability and value?
4. Will people ultimately end up looking good, by doing business with me?
Answering these questions with “Yes,” will be the stuff of my next update.