On Tuesday, November 6th, I am releasing my third book in three years. If you read this newsletter each week (or even most weeks), you know the book is titled “Eat Their Lunch: Winning Customers Away from Your Competition.” It’s a book about competitive displacement, or put more directly, “stealing your dream clients from your competition.”
Eat Their Lunch is a book about living, thriving, and surviving in the red ocean, where there is fierce competition, where clients want to commoditize what you sell, and where you are necessarily a large part of the value proposition (and in many cases, the largest).
When someone writes a book, they have something they absolutely must share, some question they must answer, some problem they need to solve, or some complicated knot they are attempting to unravel.
When you think about sales, there aren’t too many things more difficult than taking your dream client away from a competitor they believe is satisfying their needs. It’s not that they don’t have a compelling reason to change, but rather they don’t think they have a compelling reason to change. Unless and until you help them believe they need to do something different, you are not going to have an opportunity to win your dream client away.
You also can’t wait to win your dream clients. In the past, it was customary to wait patiently for your dream client to become dissatisfied enough to let an RFP or rummage through a box business cards to invite different companies in to present to them. This behavior, waiting passively and being reactive, is how you become a commodity. Here’s the terrible truth about commoditization: If you act like a commodity, your dream client will treat you accordingly.
The right approach for both of these problems is to get on your front foot, to be proactive, to dictate the tempo, to control the narrative.
When you write a book proposal, you are supposed to include a section to describe the audience for your book to the publisher. The wrong answer is “everyone.” The right answer is a small niche that is large enough to publish a book profitably.
If you want to know how to speak poorly about your competitor, this book is not for you. I offer the opposite advice. The best way to “eat their lunch” is to say nice things about your competitor and then differentiate yourself and your approach.
If you want tricks and shortcuts that will provide you with a result without any effort on your part, I am afraid I am going to disappoint you. Eat Their Lunch is practical and tactical, and the frameworks require disciplined effort on your part.
However, if you are the kind of person who wants to know how to create so much greater value than their competitors that their dream clients will switch providers, Eat Their Lunch will show you how to do so.
If you want to make ideas like Challenger and selling with insights actionable, the chapter on capturing mind share will provide you with a framework and exercises that will allow you to do so.
Prospecting isn’t an event. Prospecting is now a campaign, where you professional persist and pursue your dream client over time. If you want to know how to professionally persist effectively and use your greater value creation to capture mind share and gain appointments with your dream clients, you’ll find the strategy in Eat Their Lunch.
For me, discovery is now about helping the client discover something about themselves. If you want the newest and sharpest lens for understanding your client’s real challenges, Eat Their Lunch will stretch you, and in doing so, give you a much clearer view, one that opens up opportunities and creates an advantage. It will help you see what is invisible to your competitor.
You know how there seem to be more people involved in every deal and how it is getting more difficult to manage this process? If you want a framework for understanding who these people are, what they want, and how to create a strategy to get the ones you need to “yes” at the same time, you’ll find it in chapters 7 and 8.
We use words like “peer,” “consultative,” and “trusted advisor,” when we talk about how we want to be perceived by our clients. In a section on Intangibles, you will find the recipe from becoming these things for your clients. However, while you are doing so, you also need to retain your clients, protecting yourself from being displaced. You will find the answer to the problem of retaining your clients while you do the work of taking theirs from them.
You can get the book now on Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble, or in bulk from the best book people on Earth, 800CEOREAD.com. But first, go to eattheirlunchbook.com to look at the bonuses available when you buy the book, things like workbooks and videos and keynotes.