We’re not selling pumps

Pay attention to any commercial or look at any advertisement, and you can quickly discern what they are really selling. You also quickly realize that hardly anyone is actually trying to sell that product itself. They are really selling something else, and their product is the way to get it. Examples are countless:

  • Cadillac doesn’t sell cars or even transportation. They sell luxury and prestige.
  • Most fitness clubs don’t sell any kind of strenuous exercise. They sell “how good you’re going to look if you just come in and join.”
  • Dentists don’t sell cleaning or tooth restoration. They sell smiles.
  • McDonald’s doesn’t sell food. They sell fuel to get you through your day.
  • 7-Eleven stores don’t sell soft drinks or candy bars or cans of motor oil. They sell convenience and location.
  • Infomercials sell how much better your life is going to be if you would just pick up that phone and order this product.
  • And finally, Apple doesn’t sell devices. They sell “up-to-date and cool.”

The list is endless, and it’s a great starting point to help us think about our own industry in these terms. What does our industry sell? What is our real product?

We sell something very real and tangible and needed, but it’s not pumps or pressure tanks or even the drilling service itself. Very simply, we provide water. People count on us for the reliable delivery of water to their homes, farms, schools, and businesses. They count on us every time they turn on a tap, take a shower, water their lawns, cool their machinery, and wash down their work surfaces. And we give it to them, using the highest quality products, with expert installation and maintenance. Our industry doesn’t sell pumps. We provide much, much more.

Next time you’re in front of your customer, don’t forget what you’re really selling.

3 thoughts on “We’re not selling pumps

  1. Well said Mark. It is only the limits of our own thoughts about the importance of the procuct our industry provides that limit our true potential in front of the customer of the moment.

  2. Pingback: The fab five | Franklin in the Field

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