Finding your 'Different'

Regular readers know that DXBP stands for much more than hosting cap intro summits for funds and founders. We’re all about sharing decades of our own trial and error, what works and seems not to! By return we receive the most extraordinary feedbacks and stories which help us improve and manage our own blind spots.

All successful fund management firms or founder led businesses must become as adept at selling and marketing as executing the manufacturing of their products or solutions. But in an era of global visibility and competition, claiming ‘better’ funds and products is unlikely to land well and may even detract from converting sales and tickets. What resonates much more is figuring out and communicating what your ‘different’ is; why you deserve a hearing and someone’s valuable time.       

Try this on for size, probably 99% of service led organisations will advertise that they are available to their customers 24/7 365. 99% of fund managers will state that they offer award winning risk adjusted performance delivered by a highly credentialed team. If everyone is claiming it, how can it be a point of difference and therefore why claim it at all? We contend that most ‘bold’ statements made by founders are really just ‘table stakes’ and are simply not enough to engage the target customer or investor.   

The contrarian in us suggests that finding ‘different’ can be just as much about what you don’t do, won’t do, can’t do. To get the creative juices flowing, here’s a few examples of things we try to deploy in our firm – by admitting to them here we increase our bravery levels to embrace different! Maybe you’ll find something here that resonates in your own messaging: 

  1. We never lead with statistics: investors invest because they like you, trust you and want to engage. It’s always stories before statistics.      
  2. We can’t succeed via Zoom and Google Meet: as Jerry Maguire once said ‘you gotta make the house-call’. There’s a reason we travel over 150k miles a year to meet new and existing clients, 50 weeks a year.  
  3. We don’t close client pitches: we make an RSVP, sometimes the invitation is not compelling enough in the client’s eyes, that’s really OK!  
  4. We don’t ask for referrals: we focus on delivering for our clients and the rest will look after itself.
  5. We don’t work for free: the moment a fund or founder undervalues our time or marketing expertise by wanting a success fee only engagement we switch off and pull out.  
  6. We don’t split the difference in fee negotiations; our prices are fair and we have more client demand than supply of summit seats. Perhaps you don’t need elements of our solutions and that reduces the price or vice versa but we never arbitrarily cut prices.
  7. We don’t tell you what we think you want to hear; we’ll counsel without procrastination on what we think you should do to get success in the Middle East.
  8. We won’t chase someone more than 3 times, if there’s no response, we’re clearly not the right partner for that contact at that time. No offense taken!       
  9. We find it very hard to work with funds or founders who believe they are the star of the show: capital is always the star of the show!
  10. We don’t take ad-hoc projects: it’s taken decades to figure out how to get success in the Middle East and that’s why we drive our delivery through our summits and roadshows. We simply don’t believe that retainer fees paying for 1 by 1 meetings works so we don’t do it.          

What makes you and your firm different? We love your feedbacks and stories. Please reach out if you think we can be additive to your capital raising activity.