Are Your Clients Shopping Your Ideas? Here's What You Can Do
This week one of my new promotional products distributor coaching clients shared this frustrating situation with me. Maybe it has happened to you.
An idea for a marketing campaign using promotional products that he shared with a client went to another vendor. This is frustrating situation. How can you avoid having this happening to you?
Here's what I suggested.
1. Be careful about giving away your ideas at a first meeting. Use the first appointment to find out more about the client's needs and then come back with fresh promotional suggestions.
2. Ask good questions before you move ahead such as:
- If I give you a fresh idea, that you haven't seen previously, will you be required to share it with other vendors?
- Is this an order that's going to be put out on bid? If so, how will you decide? Is it strictly about price?
- Can you please share with me the decision making process at your company?
3. Consider using some proprietary wording such as: "The ideas presented here are the intellectual property of ______________ and may not be shared with other vendors." (Note: I am not lawyer. Consult an attorney for proper wording and legal protection.)
4. Present custom options. Custom options such as special packaging or a custom design will be hard for another vendor to duplicate.
5. Provide value. This may be the most important tip of all. When you consistently provide value such as marketing tips, knowledge of your client's industry and challenges and provide solutions to their challenges, your clients will view you as a valuable resource, not another commodity vendor.
Here's to selling smarter! How do you deal with this frustrating situation? Please comment below.
Looking for more ideas to quickly and easily increase your promotional products business? Get a free Skyrocket Your Sales audio download with non-stop ideas to increase your promotional sales, plus supplier discounts and my new special report "10 Big Mistakes Promotional Professionals Make and How to Avoid Them and Double Your Sales," at www.promobizcoach.com. Contact Rosalie at Rosalie@promobizcoach.com.