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How Being the Same Makes You Different

By Mary Ann McLaughlin, Managing Partner


“Ordinary things consistently done, bring extraordinary resultsKeith Cunningham, Best-Selling Author and Business Builder

Butler Street has performed numerous Voice of the Customer survey interviews. 98% of the interviews include comments from the customer exclaiming that that everyone in the industry is the same. Every sales rep is saying the same thing about their respective company. Everyone promises essentially the same solutions and they all fall just a little short. It’s the industry, they say – what can you expect?

So what are most companies doing to fight this impression of wallowing in mediocrity? They continually tweak their messages to sound different. They are often focused on creating clever elevator pitches or storyboards that sound different from the competition in hopes that their prospects and clients will believe that they are different. Most companies focus on the words that their marketing campaigns say…

However, the companies that do manage to differentiate themselves from their competition focus on being the same.

The companies that are able to differentiate themselves focus on being the same internally – by consistently delivering to their customers:

  • The same great customer service no matter who they happen to speak with.

  • The same level of quality no matter what office location/geography they are dealing with.

  • The same mission and vision from the CEO to the part time administrative person.

  • The same focus on helping the end user no matter what the product or service.

  • The same frictionless customer experience at every single touchpoint.

When organizations focus on delivering consistent customer value as their mission, and they have that same objective with every customer interaction, people notice. Think Disney. They are known for delivering great experiences and it is because everyone in the Disney organization has the same goal. The goal to actively help the guest enjoy their visit to the fullest extent possible. Guests will average sixty (60) contact opportunities. That’s sixty (60) times that a guest will come into contact with a Disney employee. Each of these interactions is what we call a “moment of truth” whereby a customer has the opportunity to form an opinion of Disney. Disney makes it each employee’s responsibility, no matter what the position, for creating moment of truth that is a magical one. We have all grown to appreciate that same magical treatment from every Disney associate.

Our research shows that organizations who consistently and relentlessly implement the following, have a significantly greater client acquisition, retention and expansion performance than those who do not:

  1. Listen to your customers. Perform a Voice of the Customer survey. Truly understand what your customers’ needs and wants are, what matters the most to them, how you are currently perceived, and what you can do to improve your relationship today and in the future. Then commit to exceeding their expectations.

  2. Communicate that everyone in your organization is there to serve the customer. Every employee either directly serves the customer or serves those who serve the customer. Every interaction, every moment of truth, matters. All associates must understand your mission and have the same goal of serving your customer.

  3. Always focus on the growth of your customer. Put internal processes and metrics in place that measure how you are helping to improve your customer’s business performance. Substantiate your difference!

  4. Do what you say you are going to do. Every customer you currently have is yours because they believe in your promise. Put the discipline in place to make sure that no one in your organization ever breaks that promise.

  5. Keep the magic going. In the spirit of Disney, recognize, reward and celebrate the good work your people are doing to accomplish your mission and vision. Your people will do magical things for your company and your clients - if they believe it matters. It not only matters, it is essential!

Butler Street helps clients and their people grow. We have the tools and the processes that can help you differentiate and substantiate your value. We can help you define and deliver standout performance for your customers at every single touchpoint. Click on CONTACT and let’s start the conversation on how we can help you grow.

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