marketing+sales : So What? Why You? Who Cares?February 2013
My objective as a consultant and in this column is to change our way of thinking from being goal oriented to being growth oriented. What does this mean? When we are goal oriented, we achieve a goal and then are left with an "empty feeling" as to what's next. In contrast, when we are growth oriented, we never fully arrive at our goal. An individual's or an organization's development is never complete. There is always more work to be done as we seek to develop.
A growth-oriented person or organization is committed to continual improvement in all aspects of life. So, this article will address the "So what? Why you? Who cares?" as a growth opportunity. These phrases will help us think in a new way. To best frame the situation, let's imagine we are on a sales call with a new potential client.
So what? The prospect responds with "So what?" in regard to your claim that your organization offers "XYZ product or service." This means he or she is not impressed because anybody can do that. For example, you tell a potential client that you offer great customer service, that you can provide a high-quality brochure or pen—and he or she says or thinks, "So what?" "So what" shows that we have not communicated anything remarkable. Instead, we sound just like everyone else. We must overcome the "so what" factor.
Why you? The prospect asks, "Why you?" In other words, the person is wondering why he or she should choose your organization over the many other available choices. The prospect really is asking if you have created an offering that is compelling and valuable enough to make you the only viable choice for them. Think about it. If you are a company and talk about the services you offer beyond printing and promo items, and are open 24 hours a day, your prospect may think, "Big deal, everyone offers that these days." This is what "why you" is all about.
Who cares? The prospect answers your proposal with "Who cares?" What is in it for them? Why should they be enthralled that you have an environmental certification or focus? (Don't most people have that these days?) Maybe you call yourselves a "solutions-based" or "one-stop-shop company?" All they hear is "blah, blah, blah," as many people claim the same thing. You talk and they hear those "Charlie Brown" character voices.