How FOMO Manifests Itself at LSPs - Our Analysts' Insights
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22Nov

How FOMO Manifests Itself at LSPs

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FOMO – the fear of missing out – relates to the anxiety people feel when they are worried about missing out on opportunities. Companies are not immune to this phenomenon. And many LSPs have a bad case of it – even if they aren’t aware of it.

The Shiny Object Syndrome

At its most basic level, FOMO manifests itself as the shiny object syndrome, which often goes hand in hand with not wanting to say no.

For example, one of your salespeople attends a networking event and meets a prospect who may need language services but that prospect is not even vaguely related to any of your target industries. Can you resist the temptation to pursue a lead that doesn’t meet your ideal client profile?

Or you’re working with a marketing agency on a new website and they encourage you to showcase the breadth and depth of your offering to as wide a clientele as possible. Will you manage to refocus them to showcase what is relevant to your ideal clients only?

Or one of your managers attended a webinar and uncovered a huge potential for AI-driven captioning and subtitling services – but you don’t currently offer that service. Will you study how it aligns with your differentiation, target market segments, and current sales approach – or will you just assign someone to figure out how you can add this capability to your toolbox?

In most cases, LSPs struggle with keeping a laser-focused approach on their business. And that’s why, out of the over 27,000 LSPs we track, the great majority end up being generalists instead of specialists.

The Side Effects of FOMO for LSPs

Whether LSPs realize that FOMO plays a role in their decisions or not, their reaction to opportunities affects the ease of selling their services. You’d think that adding a broad range of services and technologies and selling them to a broad range of industries is a plus – it shows you’re well rounded, right?

Wrong. When buyers have a problem, they seek experts – not generalists. That means that when marketing or in early sales stages, a hyper-specialized image is better than generalist positioning. LSPs usually don’t like to hear that because it goes against their natural tendencies to position themselves as one-stop shops for every possible language need and client.

But beware – needs change as the relationship evolves. Once you’ve penetrated an account or at least engaged in a conversation with the prospect, the reverse is true – clients want a generalist so they don’t have to engage with “too many” suppliers. At that point, it becomes helpful to leverage generalist capabilities to upsell and cross-sell beyond the original specialist pitch you made.

So, What Can You Do?

In our research on why it is better to specialize, we list seven reasons why LSPs benefit from projecting a specialist image. The key is to overcome the fear that a narrow focus will turn away prospects whose needs fall outside your chosen specialization. Keep in mind that a specialization isn’t necessarily tied to a vertical. It could be a buyer type, a content type, a language, or a different business model.

By specializing and focusing on specific target market segments, you can more easily develop a strong reputation and gain efficiencies when marketing and selling. You won’t waste time and money developing offerings of little relevance to your target audience. Instead, your specialist focus will help drive innovation that will appeal to prospects.

Photo credit: Cecilie Arcurs

 

About the Author

Hélène Pielmeier

Hélène Pielmeier

Director of LSP Service

Focuses on LSP business management, strategic planning, sales and marketing strategy and execution, project and vendor management, quality process development, and interpreting technologies

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