Standing Out Amongst the Competition

Standing Out Amongst the Competition
Dean Petrulakis

In any form of business there is always competition. Whether it’s in the gourmet pretzel business (Auntie Anne’s vs. Wetzel Pretzel), Sports (Da Bears vs. Packers), or anything else there is always competition. The key to being different from your competitors or standing out in the consumer’s eyes is simple. Do something that makes you different and benefits your customers that your competitors aren’t doing. At Fuse there are a few key ways we stand out from our competition and add distinct value. The following are 3 ways you or your brand can stand out and make a difference and cut through the clutter of competition.

In the printing business, there are many print shops that do an extraordinary job at printing materials and getting the message out to the target audience. At Fuse we understand that it takes more than printing a beautiful piece to obtain loyal customers. One thing that we strive to do is to create meaningful relationships with our customers and really get to know their strategy and needs. We are not the typical print shop that you send your specs to and get your product back without speaking to anyone in between that time. There are times that our Account Executives meet with clients three, four, or even five times just planning and talking about what they are trying to achieve even before any project has been discussed or a job is ready to print. In addition, when it comes to our Customer Service Representatives they are second to none! These individuals work closely with our clients; having multiple emails and calls to make sure their job is created the way they expect and that everything runs smoothly. Some of the individuals at Fuse really do go above and beyond what they need to on a job. There have been times that our clients have sent in a job and we could have printed it the way they presented it in the specs and sent it out but that is not the Fuse way. There are multiple times that our team has looked at a project and taken the time to speak with a client and show them a better, more efficient way to complete their project. This is just one example of how our team stands out amongst the competition. We care and we show it all the time!

Another key way that Fuse stands out amongst its competition is through education. We are extremely proud of our educational brand, Relevate. Relevate was originally created when there was a void in the print community and many individuals were looking for someone or something to help them expand their knowledge on print, technology, the latest trends, and so much more. Fuse stepped up and created a year-round educational platform for our community–specifically for those who had the desire to learn. We knew that in order for Relevate to be successful we needed to constantly be providing educational information. To do this, Relevate offers information through many channels. We have a bi-monthly magazine, monthly e-newsletter, social media, Relevate website, blog, webinars, and our annual Relevate conference. Throughout these channels we are able to provide information all year long. We are constantly serving our community and adding value through Relevate, and this cements long term relationships and definitely helps differentiate us from our competitors.

Customer Service
In a market that is extremely competitive companies need something else to differentiate themselves other than just price. One aspect of the business that we pride ourselves on is customer service. Like many companies we say, “the customer comes first.” The difference is that when we say that we mean it and follow through. From doing press oks at 3am to driving proofs downtown to our customer’s apartment in the city on a Saturday morning to make sure everything looks perfect, we will do anything to make sure our customers are happy. Our job is to make our customers’ lives easier and always add value. If we can’t do those things we shouldn’t be in business. If you are like me you have had your fair share of bad customer service experiences. Because of these bad experiences the good customer service experience is something people do not take for granted. It helps create loyal customers who will buy from you repeatedly and refer you to others. But it’s not just the typical customer service that we provide. We take the time to get to know our clients personally and form meaningful connections with them. Our client relationships and friendships are built on trust, honesty and empathy. We connect with our clients beyond the transaction of doing business together. In turn, our relationships with our clients are mutually beneficial and valuable.

Hopefully these tips we use to stand out amongst our competition will spark ideas to help you do the same. We’d love to hear how you stand out. Please comment and share your thoughts with us.