I have a graphic artist named Jana who does amazing things with images, words and photographs, but she doesn’t do logos. She’s not shy about it either. For many reasons she’s determined that no matter how great she is as an artist, when it comes to logos customers are better off finding someone else. She’s not rare in this respect. There are going to be times when you suddenly realize (If you’re being honest with yourself and your customer) that your product, service or gizmo is not the best solution to their problem. That’s the point where you tell your customer that—just as Jana does when people ask for a logo.
By directing your customers to the best solution, not just the most available solution (yours) you’ll win more credibility, trust and repeat business than you would by trying to get them to fit your elliptical peg into their round hole. Close, but no cigar doesn’t work for most people. When they find out there was a better solution and you knew about it, but didn’t share that with them, you lose on so many levels. Sure, it’s hard to do, but if you believe the truth that the customer comes first, it’s what you need to do. Knowing that Jana doesn’t do logos doesn’t mean I stop using her services. It means I just get my logos done elsewhere. When a customer learns that you aren’t all things to all people and aren’t afraid to admit it, they develop a new respect for you, and very often will go out of their way to find something you can and will do best for them.
“Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer, but wish we didn’t.” ~ Erica Jong