Word Gets Around Make It Count

Word Gets Around, Make It Count

Don’t Be a Drowned-Out Shout

I’ll admit, this is the definition of a “First World problem.” At one point, I was searching for a towing pad eye to tow one boat with another, both safely and over long distances. 

However, we are in the First World, and we solve First World problems primarily for First World customers.

Smaller boats come with very simple D-rings that bolt through the bow of the boat. The D-ring works fine for its primary purpose, securing a smaller boat to a trailer. Those who tow boats over distances know that the D-ring will eventually either pull out or damage the towed boat; that is not its purpose. There are pad eyes designed more specifically for this purpose.

First World Solutions For First World Customers

When checking around to find a pad eye designed for our exact boat and purpose, the search was more difficult than I expected. You can buy some fairly generic brackets that fit multiple hull forms; however, they look terrible. They may work, but they don’t look like they belong.

I have mentioned before that Fort Lauderdale is a yacht and superyacht capital. You would think there are many providers of this type of product, especially in Florida.

Luckily, the boating community is open to sharing information. Word of mouth works through online forums, marina gossip, and industry chatter. I heard the same company in relatively short order and the same name at the company, “Joe at Broward Machine.” “Joe’s the guy.” “Check out Broward Machine.” So I did.

I had expanded my search globally via the internet to see what was out there, and the universal response was the same, “Joe.”

Like many of us, I looked at the company’s website. It turns out most of us have moved pretty far down the path toward a purchase before we ever walk into a store or make an online purchase because we can check so thoroughly in advance. We have tools to learn much before meeting a vendor/supplier/provider.

Your customers are doing that with you.

Joe’s website is informative but not over the top. They do make what I need. I call and get voice mail. The voicemail says, “If you need specific service, please text this number.” So I did.

Within minutes, I had a text back from Joe himself. He was on another job. We talked through what I needed.

While we were on the phone, he texted me photos of completed jobs similar to my request. We were clearly on the same page. He understood why I needed what I needed, knew the challenges specific to my boat, conveyed his experience making custom products, and offered to send an estimate.

Within 30 minutes, I had an estimate for a custom-made towing pad eye.

His solution was engineered well, looked like it could have come with the boat, was proven across multiple types of boats, was endorsed by the boating community, and commanded a premium price.

Joe asked good questions about usage.

He wanted to know that I had thought through and had the other requisite hardware, tackle, and towline to use his product correctly. Yes, he was upselling, but he did it through a lens of concern for our safety, the safety of the tow, and to assure that a tow using his pad eye system wouldn’t break away someday—thereby hurting his positive reputation.

Joe is doing what we all want to be doing with our clients:

  • Producing highly specialized solutions to exacting specifications.
  • Recognized as “the best.”
  • Proud to offer fast and reliable customer service.
  • Fortunate enough to benefit from a universally positive reputation.
  • Command a premium price in exchange for very high value.

Who is writing or speaking of you, without your knowledge or remuneration, the way I just did of my friend, Joe?

For a copy of my book, Pitching the Big Top: How to Master the 3-Ring® Circus of Federal Sales, and more information on federal sales, visit Capitol Integration.

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