Remember when you made the switch from your old TV to one of those “flat screens”? Why did you buy what you did? What was your purchase journey and what factors ultimately drove you to the purchase you made? And, do you think that everyone else weighed each of the determining factors the same way as you did? When it comes to high ticket items, people typically spend a significant amount of time researching their options before making their ultimate decision. High-ticket items have a different price point for us all, but I think we can all agree that there is definite line where research prevails over impulse.
In this story, we are thinking back to when we decided to purchase that first flat screen TV. There are lots of brands to choose from. And honestly, who’s to know which brand is actually better than the others? Friends swear by their brands, consumer reports may guide you in a different direction, and some scientific reviews might point you to yet another brand. You also have to factor in where you are going to buy this TV. Are you willing to chance an online retailer? What if it is damaged in shipping? Is the customer service level significantly better at one store versus another? Oh, and now that everyone has a loyalty program, is there a retailer where you would rather get the points because you have already accumulated a significant number of points? Or are you the kind of person who says, “Give me the least expensive TV and I’ll take it!”
Think about how you answered each of the questions in the last paragraph. Now, do you think that everybody answered them the same way? Likely not. If everyone answered the same way, then that brand or channel would have 100% of the market, right? But they don’t, do they?
Just like the TV market, there are lots of choices consumers need to make when choosing a hearing aid including whether or not they will want to come to you. There are many brands to consider, all promoting a bell or whistle other instruments may or may not have despite essentially doing the same thing. At the end of the day, people buy for all sorts of reasons. Some want the best price, some want the best technology, some want the highest level of support and customer service, and some just want to compare and contrast side by side before making the most informed decision for themselves.
The moral of the story is that you don’t have to be a big box retailer to compete because some people will always prefer to buy there. You also don’t have to compete by matching prices because there will always be a segment of the population interested in investing in only the least expensive option. What you have to do is be true to you…and your customers. Find out why people would buy from you. Focus on the WHY over the how or the what (a nod to Simon Sinek). Don’t spend your hard earned dollars trying to convince people to buy from you when they are already predisposed to buy elsewhere; instead, focus your marketing dollars on telling your story to those who would consider YOU. Show them why YOU know them, why YOU understand them. Your conversion will be much higher which means your return on investment will be better.
Your business is your brand. Spend time being you, being your brand. Not trying to be someone else and someone else’s brand. Your fair share of the market is out there. Why? Because everyone shops differently and when you are authentic and differentiated, people have a reason to associate with you and want to support your brand.
Serge Traylor is the founder and owner of /ˈekwədē/ (pronounced equity), a strategic branding and marketing company. /ekwədē/ exists to help great companies become great brands. They do this by partnering with companies to find their unique point of differentiation then market and communicate their strengths as opposed to resorting to defensive marketing tactics that are a response to intense competition. Serge has extensive experience in developing and refining great brands from healthcare to agriculture to consulting to consumer goods industries. He has practical marketing experience in the hearing health category in building and promoting a leading hearing aid battery brand.