Early in the sales process, promotional products salespeople usually get asked some variation of, "How are you different?" Often, the answers aren’t that great – ranging from the ambiguous “we are creative” to the middling “we have great customer service," neither of these answers will set you apart from the competition.
When you are asked how you are different, remember that differentiation implies comparison and it’s up to you as the salesperson to find out, “in comparison to what?”
In response to the client "how are you different" question, your really have two choices:
Provide a canned response of standard key points as written above
Create a perception within the buyer of how you truly are different
Too often, salespeople take the safe route and go with the first option. Instead, create a conversation and make the perception of difference much more real for the buyer. How people view you as different depends on their experiences with others in the promotional products industry. As such, you should ask them, “What is your impression of companies like mine and what have your specific experiences been like working with them?”
Conversation is much richer than a canned answer and will typically lead to additional areas in which you can further differentiate and separate from your competition.