When You Have a Commodity

Many readers have emailed me about their products or services that are now being perceived as commodities. Baseline Selling has a very detailed section of the book devoted to commodities. I call the section Commodity Busters and those of you who find yourself in this situation should refer to that.

If your prospects perceive you to be the same as your competitors, you have only yourself to blame. It comes down to positioning, selling value, differentiating yourself and being strong enough to push back. It means not caving in to having the lowest price but instead, learning under what conditions your prospect will pay more. It means asking questions instead of quoting a price. It means asking even tougher questions when they want to compare proposals. It means being able to differentiate yourself and your company when apples are apples. It means being able to say “no”. It means being able to say, “You know, a lot of companies are trying to do what we do and some of them are coming pretty close. Why would you do business with us when you could get it from one of the imitators for less?” In case you didn’t know, that questions causes your prospect to provide you with the reasons they would buy from you. It’s not an example of you giving up.

Read the section on Commodity Busters for the specifics.