methodI’ve been working on a series of blog posts about ways to differentiate from your competitors, focused on 31 ways that you might choose to define brand promise.

One way is to highlight your method of getting the results your customers want. I don’t mean process (I’ll talk about that next) but rather the way you get the results versus other ways that competitors choose to get what they would claim are similar results.

Here’s an example. The Whale Hunters have had quite a few clients in the education industry, each providing different types of services, but several actually addressing the same issue: ways to improve the students’ learning. Two of our clients provide interactive software to augment classroom instruction. Another provides a curriculum plan and training for teachers. Still another provides a program of coaching for teachers.

Each of these ways of improving learning constitutes a different  method, and a brand promise could be delivered with a focus on your particular method. For example, if you are the one providing software, your promise could be “interactive instruction direct to the child.” Or if your method is to improve learning by helping teachers to become more effective, your promise could be “every great team has a great coach.” These different methods will appeal to different buyers. Some will think, well, the best way to improve our learning outcomes is to provide more individualized instruction directly  to the students through a software solution. Others will believe the best way to improve learning outcomes is to develop the teaching and assessment talents of the teachers.

The Whale Hunters method is another example. We compete primarily in the very busy fields of “sales training” and “business development strategy.” But we can promise two unique components of our method that differentiate us. Of all the ways to increase revenue, we teach one particular method: selling bigger deals to bigger customers. Our promise is that we can teach you to sell bigger deals to bigger customers which will produce the outcome of more revenue. The other method we use is to involve members of the cross-functional departments–marketing, operations, customer service, IT, financial, etc., in the sales/business development process, not just the sales team. Most of our competitors work primarily with sales teams alone.

So if you have a special method to get your customers the results they want, try it on for size as you develop your brand promise.

Do you have a unique method? Would love to hear about it–comment below.