Should I mention my competitor?


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Recently I got an email from Chris, who is trying to get her foot in the door of companies who are using one of her primary competitors. She wanted to know:

If we offer the same service at a cheaper rate with additional services, should I mention their current provider — and then state their missed opportunities related to my value proposition? Or should I leave the name of the provider out all together? 

Here’s my response:

It’s okay to be knowledgeable and state the other vendor’s name. Do it
in a matter-of-fact manner so it feels natural—not like you’re attacking them. State that that’s why you’re calling.

If you don’t, they’ll try to blow you off with “We’re already working
with XYZ Company.” Now they can’t use that excuse because that’s the primary reason you’re initiating contact. That’s why you want to be upfront.

Then state that you offer additional capabilities that can enable them to shrink/minimize/eliminate/increase (key business driver) at the same or less cost – and would like to set up a time to discuss this.

Most decision makers will find this compelling. And, the more money they spend with your competitor, the more compelling it will be.

What would you suggest? I look forward to reading your recommendations.

Republished with author's permission from original post.


  1. I really never thought of using the fact that they’re with a specific competitor as the reason for the call. That’s terrific if you know the competitor’s service offerings well enough to use that.
    What a great tip.

    Could you please elaborate a bit more, though? This would be a terrific topic for a longer article.

  2. I think it makes sense to acknowledge a competitor for a couple of reasons a) the web is at the point where customers can already find a fair amount of competitive information for any product or service they’re interested in/currently using and b) assuming you do feel strongly about the value of your product you should be able to offer a quick, concise reason why they should listen to what you have to say. Competition is a key part of any value proposition.

    Even if you’re the primary company in your market &/or they don’t already use a competitor, being able to articulate your position in relation to any other options is going to be a smart way to let them know you understand they have options and appreciate their business.


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