It’s About Value

By: Mark Zajac

My uncle Nick owned a full service gas station on the south side of Chicago for over 50 years. Some of you may even remember when someone else pumped your gas, washed your windows, checked the tires and fluid levels and had a mechanic that could fix almost anything with an engine. One day I asked Nick why his gas prices were so much higher than his competitors. “Marco” he said, “when you buy gas, you are paying for more than just gas. You are paying for that man to be there when you really need him”. I didn’t get it until I was much older. Nick didn’t sell gas, he sold peace of mind. He didn’t sell a commodity, he sold value! Twenty below zero and your car won’t start? Stranded downstate and need someone to drive 3 hours to pick you (and your car) up today and take you home? Customers of Home Oil Service never needed to worry.

What value are you selling? Don’t give me a list of product features…give me a list of customer benefits! Tell me how your customer is better off by doing business with you or what you do better than any of your competitors? Just make sure whatever you identify as value is perceived as valuable by your customer.

The fact is, most people are willing to pay more for added value (either real or perceived). Identify your unique value and validate it with your customers. Increase your value to your customers and you can extract that value back in higher prices and higher margins. Remember, it’s not about price, it’s about value.

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