A mandatory weapon in a guerrilla’s arsenal is a clear picture of reality. Reality? What’s that? It’s the difference between the way you are conducting business compared with the way your competitors are conducting their business. The whole idea is to do absolutely everything better than your competitors. But how the heck can you accomplish that? Answer: by spying. Guerrillas spy on their competitors, their industry, and especially, themselves. Just realize that business information is more plentiful than ever and that your competitors aren’t really dummies. They’re getting smarter every day, and the only way you’re going to know how you measure up to them is by actively engaging in regular spying. That’s why, if your business does not focus upon speed, you’re in serious trouble. People do not like to wait. They want what they want when they want it. Usually, that means right now. Making them wait is showing a disrespect for their time, and time is something they cherish. If they call with a request, grant it asap. If they send you an email, respond within 24 hours, though two hours is far better, and two minutes is best. If they order something, do all you can to assure on-time delivery. Even if they must be put on hold when they call you, be sure you fill that hold time with marketing messages that enlighten and fascinate them. Call a competitive company and request some information. If your voice is too well known by those who would dare to compete with you, have a friend make the call. See how you are treated on the phone. See how your information request is processed and how long it takes. See if there is any follow-up and how good it is. Then, call your own company and request the same information. Again, since they probably already know the sound of your voice, engage a friend to help you spy. Are you treated as well as your competitors treated you? Is your information request processed as well and as fast? Is your follow-up better than your competitor’s follow-up? If your competitors are doing anything better than you, make the changes so that you are doing everything better than they are.
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