It’s obvious that price is the number one decision making factor when working with businesses. In order to have any lasting success in this industry, however, you have to navigate a fine line when setting your price quotes and commission. You don’t want to be undercut by competitors and lose out on contracted business, but you’d also like to avoid a “race to the bottom” scenario where price/commission cutting leads to such extremes that there is no longer enough compensation to make the opportunity worth your while. So how do you shift a customer away from focusing on price alone?

Your approach should center on your unique value proposition – i.e. the strategy that makes you competitive in the market.

Not sure exactly what a value proposition is? Check out our post What Is A Value Proposition And How Do I Create One?

If your only aim is finding the lowest energy prices, you’re no better than a website that acts as a price aggregator. It should go without saying that your #1 priority is finding businesses the lowest energy prices from dependable and reputable sources. But to be the best, you need to go a step further.

Introduce prospects to your holistic approach to energy consulting. Your unique selling proposition (USP for short) should take who you are and what you focus on and translate that into how that affects your customer and why they should care. You should be able to boil this down to no more than a few sentences. Here are two examples to give you more clarity:

  • Domino’s Pizza: You get fresh, hot pizza delivered to your door in 30 minutes or less — or it’s free
  • FedEx: When it absolutely, positively has to get there overnight

Having a clearly defined statement describing how your focus affects your customers will give any prospect a bite-sized understanding of how you stack up against the competition. This information helps them decide if your offering is of interest to them and how you are different than your competition quickly. Receiving a warm response here will allow you to progress your sale to the next step of the sales cycle where you learn about your customer in greater detail and further elaborate on your USP. By educating them on these various aspects of your service, you will justify an investment in your quality consulting rather than offering value with just a price.

Our post on the 5 Methods Guaranteed To Differentiate You From The Competition should be your guide to building value as a way to differentiate from the competition.

Having identified areas where you can increase your value as an energy consultant, you can combine this customer-centric approach with other energy-related services to further enrich your customer’s experience. This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to invest more time in helping your customer make changes to their consumption for example, but providing them with a guide so that they can take these steps on their own can go a long way. We wrote a post on three steps businesses can take to reduce energy costs titled Reduce Energy Costs Through Energy Efficiency With These 3 Steps that should help. Present these ideas to your customer as a way to continually add value to your relationship. And if you have an R.F.Queue account, you can download our “Guide to Reducing Energy Costs” from your Sales Tools.

Sales coach Mark Hunter expresses it perfectly when he says, “It’s not about having the right opportunities. It’s about handling the opportunities right.” Shifting a customer away from price is about teaching them not to equate value alone with a low price. Rather it is about recognizing the additional benefits they will receive by working with you while you find them a low energy rate. Your focus therefore should be a vale-added selling approach. Seek to provide more than what is expected.

Want to learn more about value-added selling? Read our post titled Value-Added Selling: How To Transform Your Sales Process To Achieve Greater Success.

What you should do now

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