This week, Joe G. crunches the competition. Not literally – if he really crunched the competition, he’d probably put them in the hospital.

Q: A new rep is gunning for one of my better accounts. Gave my customer a price sheet with items about 10 percent less across the board than what we offer. What should I do?

— Steve, San Jose, Calif.

A: Don’t try to keep the account on price, for starters. You sell on price, you’ll lose, every time. Book it. If someone is coming in offering to slash a whopping 10 percent off items, the practice’s savings isn’t going to be astronomical. The average Doc spends between $1,200 and $1,800 a month on med-surge items. Is saving $120 to $180 really worth them losing a relationship built over the years? It’s kind of like going to the grocery store after spending two hours clipping coupons only to see you’re saving 10 cents on a generic brand of cereal rather than your tried-and-true Cap’n Crunch. Is it really worth leaving the Cap’n on the shelf?


Instead of going right to “I’ll match the price” or “Let me see what I can do,”  ask yourself, What Would Joe G. Do? 

Talk to them about what this young gun doesn’t bring to the table. Like the fact you helped the practice find $12,000 in new revenue last month through an A1c test. Or the fact you helped them keep their lab CLIA-waived. Is that worth saving one to two Benjamins? And don’t forget that through your 8-year relationship with the manufacturer, you helped them outfit their entire practice with tables, chairs, and cabinets headache free.    

So the next time you have a customer tell you they’ve talked with a rep offering pennies in savings, tell em “Doc, I’m here to help you MAKE thousands, not save hundreds.”

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