What do these elite providers do differently than the rest of us to win new clients and retain the ones they have? They engage clients at a deeper personal and professional level, a "third level" that leads to greater success and career satisfaction and less price competition.
From the client’s perspective, top competitors pretty much look the same. On the other hand, clients feel that their situation, project, people, preferences, and process are unique. Most professionals who sell services try to force clients to recognize and value increasingly nuanced differences in their capabilities. (I call this “vendor differentiation.”)
Strategic partners create client preference and loyalty by finding and aligning to what is unique about the client, the project, client preferences, and process (I call this “client differentiation”), and then marshaling the resources of their company to implement a completely unique solution that helps their client win.
The top performers in selling services tend not only to outperform the rest, but the margin of their superiority is huge. Look in on any sales training or seminar and you will see the better producers engaged and taking notes, while the lower-quality performers are looking at their Smartphones. Rather than concentrating on bringing lower-tier performers up to the highest standards, best-in-class firms focus on their winners. A small tweak to a winner’s technique can pay off huge dividends.