NPA’s New Certified Pawn Professional Designation

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Good news: the economy is growing and 2015 is expected to be a banner year.
Bad news: get ready for even more intense competition.

Differentiating your business from other pawn stores must be your highest priority. It is how you will successfully meet the challenge of more competition. Your objective is to position your store as the customer’s first and only choice.

There are four ways to differentiate your business:

  • Price – Customers view your prices as especially competitive.
  • Value – This represents the something extra that you offer, like special coupons, two-for-one offers, a “no questions” satisfaction guarantee, and other incentives.
  • Convenience – It must be very easy to do business with your store.
  • Trust –Customers view you and your staff as uniquely knowledgeable, dependable, and honest.

Establishing a bond of trust with your customers is, by far, the most powerful and long-lasting way to set your business apart and, therefore, demands most of your attention.

Think about other industries and professions. Let’s say you require surgery. Several surgeons are available but only one has earned the FACS (Fellow of the American College of Surgeons) designation. Who do you choose? If you need a retirement or estate plan, would just any financial planner do? Or might you select the one who is a Certified Financial Planner (CFP)? Likewise, if you need a precious stone appraised, wouldn’t you prefer to engage a GIA Graduate Gemologist? The same will soon be true of pawnbrokers.

Consumers know that professional designations are important. Earning one sets you apart. You have passed a rigorous examination, agreed to conform to a code of conduct, and committed yourself to periodic continuing education to ensure that you always remain knowledgeable.

NPA is excited to share the design of the new CPP designation. In the future, it will become the recognized mark of distinction among those in our business. Because not all will pursue the designation, those who do earn it will have differentiated themselves from their colleagues.

In the months ahead, we will share more exciting details of the CPP designation program. You will learn how the program is being created, how you can become involved, what topics will be included, and how you can take advantage of this new competitive resource. Look for more details in our next issue.