Okay. I’ll admit it: I was taken in by the low price advertising of discount super stores.
* “Deep Discounts” and
* “Lowest Prices!”
Like many consumers, I had the impression – the perception – that most products were lower in price at the discount warehouse.
When shopping for a camera, I compared prices at several different sources:
(1.) A discount super store,
(2.) The Internet
(3.) A small, locally-owned camera store.
Not only was there a price difference, but a pretty good-sized price difference.
The camera was the same price in the discount store as on the Internet.
But the price at the small local camera store was $20.00 less!
Two different accessories for the camera were also less expensive at the local camera store.
My price perception was very different than the reality.
In addition, the clerks in the discount store knew very little about the features of the camera.
But the person in the local camera store not only told me everything I needed to know about it, he gave me a demonstration and showed me how to use the camera.
Even if the price had been the same or higher, I felt there was a lot more value attached to buying the camera at the local store.
How Are You Perceived?
How do your customers feel about your company?
What is their perception?
Do they really understand the value you offer?
When buyers compare your products and services to discount stores, are they comparing apples to oranges?
Do they know that when they do business with your company, they will be getting much more than just good products?
In the camera-shopping situation, I could have shopped only at the discount store.
But because of the lack of product knowledge available in the discount store, I looked for value and found it at the locally-owned camera store.
The local store does not advertise the extra benefits they offer: locally-owned business, personal service, product knowledge, competitive pricing.
Getting the Word Out
If your customers are not aware that you offer much more than just products, they may shop elsewhere.
If they think price is the only difference between you and your competitors, there may not be much incentive to buy from you.
Using telephone, email, face-to-face and direct-mail marketing that focuses on value, benefits and solutions, will increase customers’ perception that they will gain something more important than just products when they do business with you.