The story I’m talking about is not regurgitating your company’s history. It’s not reciting your product’s features and benefits. It’s not your mission statement or vision. And it’s certainly not claiming you always exceed customers’ expectations…whatever they may be.
The story I’m talking about is defining what sets you apart from the competition that provides the greatest customer value.
This is crucial to increasing your project conversion rate and profitability, and achieving sustainable, long-term success.
This is the latest blog in a series of how to increase the conversion rate and profitability of your energy efficiency proposals.
It’s All About Messaging
If your sales team can’t tell this story, it’s going to be tough escaping “pricing purgatory.” In this case, your success in winning projects will be driven by having the lowest price, or at least one not appreciably higher than competing proposals. Unless you’re running an especially lean business, this is not a strategy for long-term success.
A McKinsey study of 2,400 companies found 1% more price yields an 11% increase in operating income. This is huge, and it’s only a 1% higher price. Consider the impact this would have on your business.
If you’re to achieve a price premium, the sales team must be able to quickly and concisely state what sets your company apart from the competition that adds the most value to potential clients.
The Potential Value of Energy Efficiency Upgrades
In addition to lower utility costs, the potential value realized from energy efficiency upgrades includes:
- Increased occupancy and lease rates
- Improved employee health and productivity
- Reduced maintenance and repair costs
- Higher property value and sales prices
It can be argued these are “generic” benefits. That is, they will be realized regardless of who’s doing the upgrade. This is true… assuming comparable performing products, quality levels, installation processes, total cost of ownership, user-friendly controls, etc. This is seldom the case. And it’s a good bet your competitors won’t address them. If they even talk about the value of their upgrades, it’s usually focused on reduced energy consumption and the associated savings.
It’s the know-how and skill set of your employees, your work processes, how you manage projects and any specialized tools or equipment that sets you apart from the competition. These are your differentiators that maximize the value customers realize from your energy efficiency upgrades.
How your sales team tells this story is the key success factor. The two vehicles for doing so are (1) your value proposition, and (2) elevator speech.
These “messaging vehicles” are the subject of our next blog. In addition to explaining the purpose of each and their key content elements, well-crafted examples will be provided.