Most are slammed. But now could be the time to really reflect and refine your message.
In the tech industry best selling book, “Ultra Hi-Def Marketing”, author Coleen Sterns Leith plainly states:
“Corporate storytelling is a vastly under-utilized tool in tech marketing that can really help drive that brand loyalty you seek."
We love Coleen and highly suggest you arm yourself with the insights contained within this work, (under 15 bucks/Amazon).
One of the hardest things to accomplish when drafting your story is to come up with the shortest and simplest answer to this difficult and complex question:
How do your offerings and company fit into a cohesive, larger vision for buyers that are going to allow you to sell and integrate delight and simplicity for a wide and diverse set of users of technology?
You could be 100% commercial, or mostly residential, or even 60% retail, your story counts no matter what.
That run-on-sentence may be complicated and difficult to answer, but you are in in the business of integrating tech stuff, and in the role of manager - so suck it up - this is why you get the big bucks.
As we’ve told you before in these pages, the overall strategy of growing a integration company amongst potential buyers is really pretty simple:
1) Sell more to your existing accounts, and 2) Sell to more accounts.
Simple strategy to state, excruciatingly hard to accomplish.
To begin with, start with engineering the buyer experience within your arena and work backwards to the technology. Most don’t do this.
Many start with the technology and then try to figure out where, how and to whom you're going to try and schlep it.
Square peg, round hole, and we are pretty sure there are big enough hammers out there that will bludgeon the largest of square pegs into the tiniest of round holes, making each sale tough, filled with conflict, and burdened with energy- sucking-effort and needless drama.
On the other hand, when the peg is perfectly machined to fit the hole:
The same thing with your story. Most start with what you want (sales) but you might first try to perceive what are the most significant benefit(s) for your buyer.
This starts with why your company exists, why your organization sees the integration arena and challenged users as a viable business strategy and the potential buyer as a significant partner? What problems are fixed and what brilliant vision did the founders have?
It could have been the original challenging concept that solves a problem many of us experienced, or that you are a freak of nature (think Sam Runco, Tony Grimanni or Jeremy Burkhardt) and just had a better idea, a better plan, deep insight into the contractor model that just made sense and the explosive personality to light things up.
It could have been you got asked by a friends dad to hook up the AV system at home or business.
The point here is to get the decision maker and influencers at your target buyer to resonate with your original purpose.
When talking about why your org started, consider the problems that you solved at the time, naturally inlay specifics into your narrative. It may have been the economy at the time, could have been unrefined gui’s, may have been the trend of multi-room - whole house audio.
Use whatever could make the birth of your company and the reason you exist resonate with the buyer’s own experience, getting them to align with your solution and their own view.
Now you can craft the service story in ways that the user can identify with. Consider these questions:
Is it easier to use? Are the systems you install stable, and offer some level of future flexibility? Is the process and well vetted, and your experience within the various technology verticals well honed? Then identify the delta, between how some try to do it themselves or have their garage band cousin do it on the weekend, your way.
Does the investment value make sense?
Does your offerings play nicely with others? Like HVAC or Lighting systems. Does it have a small footprint (like a single rack unit or fits into standard enclosures)? Is it intuitive?
What makes you different from just getting this stuff on line?
Do the products have unique a feature? We once placed a clip, that held 5 or 6 business cards, on a product that went into the industry’s very first structured enclosure. dealers loved that feature! At ZeeVee we offered on screen video products that put the dealer’s logo on the opening screen, and it was a very simple process to make that happen. Small features could tip buyers toward you.
How your uniqueness can assist home owners in making them unique in their community – and remember this is about them, not so much about you.
The possibilities are quite extensive, but too many will just rely on demos, showing performance, the brands they offer, and ease of operation or whatever, but the ones with a story will win this battle and earn loyalty in the long run.
At the end of the day, you have two stories to use to reap new relationships.
1) The captivating reason your company first launched, and how you got here.
2) The compelling benefits of your product/service you offer now.
Ensure that these stories about your company, and the services, are properly crafted, and your efforts will pay infinite dividends.