Home > Personal Development > competition.This is a three part question.

competition.This is a three part question.

When do you bring up your competition with a client?
How do you bring up your competition?
Why would you bring up or talk about your competition? - by rich34232
Easy... I make ABSOLUTELY sure that everyone knows that we provide LIFETIME benefits, not quit when you could need it the most like the other guys... I let people know that when they leave their jobs that they will be able to KEEP THEIR BENEFITS at exactly the same premium they are paying with their employer and not get increases or lose your coverage like you might with an association or credit union and knowing that we haven't increased our premiums like other health plans have for 50 years.... is how I bring up the competition.... ;st

Aloha... :cool: - by rattus58
When do you bring up your competition with a client?
How do you bring up your competition?
Why would you bring up or talk about your competition?
I don't bring up competition at all unless customer mentions it. Sales is like a math equation. The fewer variables there are the easier the equation is to solve. By You bringing up competition you add another variable to the equation therefor make it more difficult to get to the solution (the sale). If the customer brings up competition I make sure to agree that it is a good product and not bad mouth the competition. Instead of showing the customer what he gains from doing business with us, I show the customer what he loses by doing business with the competition. - by jrboyd
Rattus you speak of what youn do for the client and not what hte other companies do or don't do?

Jr I operate the same way I never speak of my comeptition unless my client brings them up. I never critique the competition I will always point out what they do right.

I do not think the competition is relevant. They have nothing to do with my proposal ,how I present my proposal or my answers to objections,concerns and questions.

I do think I need to know what my comeptition does in order to point out my value to the client. I do not need to talk about them in order to receive the ownership exchange from my client

I am presently debating a person who says I need to bring up my competition to answer the clients concerns,questions and objections to a my proposal.

That is why I am asking the 3 part question and I would like more amunition so I am asking seasoned professionals why how and when .

I am always informing the client what we do that to me is the most important. I do not care what the opposition does or doesn't do.

. - by rich34232
Rattus you speak of what youn do for the client and not what hte other companies do or don't do?

Jr I operate the same way I never speak of my comeptition unless my client brings them up. I never critique the competition I will always point out what they do right.
Hi Rich... thmbp2;

I'm not sure if you were asking me a question or not, and making a statement of what I do, because both would be correct. I don't criticize the competition ever either for two reasons, one it could be critcizing my prospect/clients choice of companies at one time, and I don't ever want to criticize my client however oblique. The other reason, and there is also the slander aspect of things too, but the other reason I don't criticize my competition DIRECTLY is that if you have to attack your competition, you better have good reason to. Attacking someone or your competition shows a lack of originality, confidence, or substance, and would indicate to my client that I don't got it. The more I criticize, the smaller I become in his eyes, and or the bigger my competition. I want ME BIGGER. That will never happen criticizing.

However, that does not mean that I won't point out what we do. We have many strengths and LOTS OF COMPETITION. Everyone has had experience with insurance premiums going up. Ours never has... I point that out.

Anyone who has belonged to an Association or Credit Union and joined one of their group plans, knows that when you leave you either, lose your coverage, will have it terminate when the group terminates the carrier, or will have your premiums eventually increase. I point that out.

Anyone who has had group coverage, medical coverage, and many times individual policies like disability (some of ours quit at 70 or reduce to year to year coverage if you're still working as well) will also quit at some age, some of ours you keep for life, it turns into a long term care product type and is triggered by ADL's (Activities of Daily Living). I point that out.

I point out that many "critical Illness" policies are 10 year term policies that escalate in premium, quit at age 70, and when used deplete the product. Ours don't.

I don't name the competition, but I do point out how we do stand above most.

Aloha.... :cool: - by rattus58
When do you bring up your competition with a client?
How do you bring up your competition?
Why would you bring up or talk about your competition?
If I am not mistaken, this is actually 4 questions, not three. Let me try and address it this way;

When do you bring up your competition with a client? Never.

How do you bring up your competition? You don't.

Why would you bring up your competition? This is no reason.

Why would you talk about your competition? Because the client needs to know something and has asked you.


If you ask me "how do you talk about your competitors?" I would say ... well, how did the prospect bring them up? Usually the best way to answer such a question is to ask one. I will give you an example about a business owner last year (p = prospect - s = sales rep - in this case me);

P "How do you feel about the Canadian Professional Sales Association?"

S "Why did you ask?" Open Probe

P "Well, I was wondering if you thought they were professional?"

S "Mr Business-owner, I take it you have had some expereinces with them and formed an opinion yourself, tell me, how do you feel about them?" Open Probe

P "Well, they seem like a pretty professional outfit."

S "Do you mean they run a smooth training seminar?" Closed Probe

P "Yes, that is exactly what I mean."

S "Is there anything else about sales training that is important to you other than how smooth the actual training events go?" Open Probe

... you see, I did not talk about them at all.

The conversation - because I remained in control - is worked around to me uncover needs without putting down my competitor at all. This is greatly preferred.

In a session about your own product or service, with the other reps who sell it, work through this using my example. Find out how to redirect the conversation using questions/probes to remain in control and get to what we need, which is uncovering what is important to the prospective buyer.

Now, the other scenario is when they want to know something specific. Like;

How does your product/service compare tho theirs?

This is the danger zone? How do we say ours is superior without putting them down. Again, you have to be good about handling this properly. Maybe like this;

S "Mr/Ms Buyer, I would be only too glad to assist you with understanding the various strengths and weaknesses of both products/services. And, since I do this everyday, I am certain I can save you serious time and effort in your research."

P "That would be great, I was finding the task a little daunting!"

.... see, you have just uncovered a need. The prospect needs you to assist them. You can begin setting up the consultative approach, which is highly effective indeed. But not before you support the need, like this;

S "Don't worry, I will help you and thereby save you a great deal of headaches with your purchase, even if you end up choosing he competition, it would be my pleasure to have assisted you" Supporting the need

.... You are a star, without having done anything. After you sense releif in their response you must now find out what they know.

S "The easiest way to begin would be for me to see what you understand about ABC Company's product. What you like or dislike so far?" Open Probe

.... start selling. Find out the needs, find out eh perceived drawbacks of the competition and take advanatage of them by explaining your strenghtrs rather than their weaknesses.

- by Gold Calling
thmbp2;

Now, the other scenario is when they want to know something specific. Like;


How does your product/service compare tho theirs?

This is the danger zone? How do we say ours is superior without putting them down. Again, you have to be good about handling this properly. Maybe like this;

S "Mr/Ms Buyer, I would be only too glad to assist you with understanding the various strengths and weaknesses of both products/services. And, since I do this everyday, I am certain I can save you serious time and effort in your research."

P "That would be great, I was finding the task a little daunting!"

.... see, you have just uncovered a need. The prospect needs you to assist them. You can begin setting up the consultative approach, which is highly effective indeed. But not before you support the need, like this;

S "Don't worry, I will help you and thereby save you a great deal of headaches with your purchase, even if you end up choosing he competition, it woul dbe my pleasure to have assisted you"

.... You are a star, without having done anything. After you sense releif in their response you must now find out what they know.

S "The easiest way to begin would be for me to see what you understand about ABC Company's product. What you like or dislike so far?"



Slick Willie comes to mind..... ;bg ;bg ;bg
- by rattus58
I made it 3 instead of 4 as 3 and 4 are tied together. If you bring them up you are talking about them.

I can understand the first question a client brings up but why would you engage the client to speak longer then you must about the competition. Yes I have heard of xyz and theyare very good however and get right into why people use you more. Get the client back on track about why I am there and what I do for them. I have never had more then a one or two sentence conversation about the competition.They are not relevant or they would be there instead of me.

As stated above I was in a debate where this so called professional said the competition must be brought into the picture when answering a clients objection about my proposal. I could not and do not understand what the competition has to do with my proposal. The exception,the other people I use never mentioned this. However this is not an objection more a question of how come I have never been notified of this before.

I do not get into a pissing contest on whose product is better. I understand best is subjective. I do not go there. I do not get asked that question. I never let it get that far to allow the competition to be invovled. The only fact I know with every client is what I do for them. That is what I focus the client towards. When client is persitant with the competition. I state this and it is very effective. I really do not wish to talk about xyz company. However if I thought they could deliver to you the professionalism,quality,service and service after the sale I would be there and we would be talking about that. BUT I am not I am here.Would you like to know why more people use me. The reply the majority of the time is yes. So far this has been every time.If and when this is not enough I wil place a name to a story and inform the client of others who have felt that way and what they found. I would go another route if this did not work on the lines of is it in your best interest to compromise on quality is it in your best interest to compromise on service and possibly service after the sale. There are many answers to follow up questions to bypass the competition.

All this to state I do not spend time talking about my competition. - by rich34232
I also carry around in a notebook referal letters of clients who state the price and why they chose me. I have stated others have done your shopping for you and would you like to know what they found. I show them the letters.

I have found so many different ways of bypassing the competition when a client brings them up. You must take charge of the conversation and guide them back to you instead of engaging the client about your competition. At the end of the day the product benefits and features are not the difference with most companies it is the sales person that makes it different.Most products are identical or they can get it for their client. - by rich34232
At the end of the day the product benefits and features are not the difference with most companies it is the sales person that makes it different.Most products are identical or they can get it for their client.
AMEN... though in the insurance market that isn't always the case, those products that are superior to ours in one way or another, are offset by strengths we have elsewhere. However, bottom line, most clients want the job done and who does it for them best. That of course would be me.... :)

Aloha... :cool: - by rattus58
I made it 3 instead of 4 as 3 and 4 are tied together. If you bring them up you are talking about them.
There is no need to bring them up. Therefore you only talk about them if the prospect brings them up.

IF you end up in a dialogue about competitors, because it was started by your prospect, then you need to be masterful indeed. - by Gold Calling
When do you bring up your competition with a client?
How do you bring up your competition?
Why would you bring up or talk about your competition?
rich

This my opinion here are my answers;

1. When do I bring up my competition with a client? I don't unless the client does.
2. How do I bring up my competition? I don't unless the client does.
3. Why would I bring up or or talk about my competition? I would never bring up or talk about my competitor unless my client did.

I try to NEVER say negative things about my competition. That makes me very unprofessional. - by MPrince
Rich34232

If you know that in your market, a high percentage of your customer's consider at least 2 other providers / brands (as well as yours), it would be advantageous for you to know who they are.

During your customer discovery you could ask 'what other products do you have on your radar at this time' and find out why.

When you then come to present your product you will present the strengths over the competition and hone in on how your product exceeds the 'why' of your competitors.

This gives you a competitve advantage 'now' and as long as you do not 'rubbish' the competition, it will give you a better chance of getting yes now.

If however you know that the majority of your customer's do not consider other providers, then asking the question is probably less pertinent. - by marky
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