Before the EXCELerate 2017 conference began, I was already making connections. The first person I met was a VP of Business Banking from Brantford, Ontario who arrived on the same flight! The second person I met was Diane Murphy, from Abbotsford, BC. Her official title is VP Agriculture, Business Banking. She and her team are agri-business specialists. This piqued my interest and helped me connect the dots with her.


My new contact from Brantford is located in an agricultural area of Southwestern Ontario, but her business card doesn’t indicate a specialty. I told her about meeting Diane and asked if the agricultural industry was a focus for her team. She confirmed it was. With this small additional detail, we were able to learn more about each other, including who I might refer to her team. Plus, we discovered we have mutual connections. Small world!


It can be challenging for prospective clients to know if a service provider will truly understand their needs and challenges and have the tools and experience to assist them. Being clear about who your best client is isn’t just about who you like working with, it’s also about stating who you offer specific or differentiated services or value to.

The Importance of Specializing

The need to differentiate is critical to many professional service businesses such as investment advisors, mortgage brokers, insurance brokers, realtors, accountants, marketers and management consultants. Most depend on referrals for new business, so it’s important for them to make an indelible impression with prospects and referral sources and to arm their best clients with tools they can use to make an impactful introduction. Non-specialized professional service firms might consider how to focus to ensure they are more memorable and can build better connections through their networks.


If you’re in a crowded marketplace and need to differentiate, consider how you can create a specialty from your current service offering to increase referrals and attract more of your best clients. Need help? Get in touch for a complimentary consultation to learn more about how to find your next best client.