How IT resellers miss opportunities to sell their true value
Everyday at Bang we meet IT resellers who are going through an identity crisis. Often they don’t even know it. They just know something is wrong but can’t quite put their finger on it. And while they have products and services to offer their market, they’re not hitting the goals for their business.
When we begin working with a company, we ask them who their organisation is and they often reel off a descriptor that is as vague as it is bland and, more often than not, entirely inward looking. An example might be: “We want to be the leaders in providing supply chain management solutions”. In a market chock full with competitors saying very similar things about their companies they’re wondering why it is that they are struggling to win new customers.
This vagueness would be understandable if they didn’t actually have much to say about their company. But most of the time, they do. These are companies with genuine differentiators, run by passionate people, with real value to offer their customers. They have an identity and a real value proposition; they’re just not articulating it. Often, they might not even know it themselves or there might be different interpretations among their people.
Here’s some of the top ways companies aren’t selling their true value:
- They need to stop talking about themselves: They’re too busy talking about what they want for their company, rather than the value they create by solving problems for their customers. (“We are Gold Partners for VendorXYZ…”….” VS. “We help you overcome data siloes and increase efficiency in XYZ”).
- They need to cross-check: Sometimes our clients are saying something about their value but they haven’t validated it with their customers or the people who know them best. Do your customers care about the point of difference you’re emphasising? When you say, “We’re taking an innovative approach to data storage” do they care that it's innovative, or just that it works? Have you found that special spot where you are telling a story at the intersection of what makes you special and what your customers need to solve their problems?
- They’re forgetting the ‘Why’ factor: IT resellers often talk a whole lot about what they do, and sometimes even how they do it differently, but not WHY they do it. What is their bigger purpose? What gets them out of bed in the morning besides money. Being able to talk about this aspect of your business is one of the most commonly overlooked ways to generate a sense of value among customers.
- They need to dig deeper: The IT resellers we work with are operating in a highly competitive market yet at first glance it is often not obvious what they do differently from their competitors. We’ll often find that it’s been a very long time since they went through an exercise to sit down and talk amongst themselves or with an outside agency about what problems they solve for their customers. It’s time to scratch beneath the surface and question how you’ve been talking about yourselves to date and talk honestly about whether you’re really highlighting your differentiators.
- They need to get on the same page: Their key people are emphasising different aspects of what they do because they’ve never sat down and agreed on what they want to say.
- They haven’t yet grasped the power of content marketing: In an increasingly ad savvy and saturated world where most people are more sceptical of being sold to in an aggressive manner, content marketing can play a critical role in helping IT resellers to establish a more subtle but just as meaningful connection with customers, building awareness, demand, loyalty and all-important trust. Overlooking the power of quality, objective-driven content today means missing a huge opportunity to sell your true value to would-be customers.
- They’ve changed: Sometimes resellers have recently emerged from period of transition and haven’t come up with an appropriate way of speaking about who they are today, versus using the old language that reflected who they used to be. This usually means they are missing a chance to capitalise on the strategic effort they’ve put into becoming the company they are.
If any of these points sound familiar, it might be time to sit down and take a deeper look at whether you’re selling your true value.