It’s easy to assume that your customers and prospective customers know you better than they really do. So many times, however, that’s a faulty assumption. A lot of companies are multi-faceted: they have capabilities on a number of different levels. But their customers’ view of them can often be one-dimensional. Are you missing out on business because potential clients simply don’t know about your capabilities?
Here’s an example of what I’m talking about. A number of our clients are in the custom homebuilding and remodeling industry. Several of them started doing marketing with us right about the time that the new housing market went into the tank. What a terrible time to be marketing homebuilders, right?
Actually, it turned out to be a great time—but these homebuilders couldn’t tell half of their story. They had to tell the rest of their story. Sure, they were custom homebuilders and loved building new homes. But they were quality craftsmen who also did a lot of home remodeling. Their businesses had two halves. If all their marketing had talked about had been new homes, they would have been in trouble. But they used their websites and their blogs to talk about their remodeling capabilities—something many of their potential clients didn’t know about.
What’s interesting is, that even though new housing starts were few and far between, a lot of homeowners were interested in undertaking significant remodeling projects on their existing homes. Did our clients have to shift some resources and make adjustments to reflect a slightly different business model? Sure. But while some builders were going out of business, these builders were making money.
It wouldn’t have happened if they had kept telling only half of their story. The people they were trying to reach didn’t necessarily think of these builders as “remodelers.” So our clients talked about their remodeling capabilities and put out helpful information that addressed remodeling questions. The result? They got remodeling business. And we’re talking significant, major, remodeling projects.
Did they stop talking about new homes? No! Our clients were smart enough to know that buying a custom home is a long process. They knew that it would take some customers a long time to gather information and ask questions, so they kept making that information available. And when the housing market turned around (and people were ready to buy), they had a leg up on their competitors.
Do your customers know what your capabilities are? Or are they only getting half of the story? You see your capabilities and capacity all the time, but there may be potential customers out there who only think of you one way. Don’t leave business on the table. Tell your whole story. It just might pay off!