Do your customers like you?
I do not see a downside in your customers liking you more than the sales person you are competing against. Likeability is a trait well worth developing. Who are the sales people you admire the most? I bet among those that first came to mind are salespeople not only successful in business but also in life.
Friendly, genuine, authentic, and interesting people seem to surface to the top. People including your potential customers tend to naturally gravitate to people they are most like, or those they wish they were more like. Your clients prefer to spend time with who they sense they share common values and interest with.
The businesses and customers you sell to all demand value. The competitive margins you need to meet continue to narrow. Plan on “closing the sell?” you better provide the best solution or the best value. When you demonstrate you are the one that best understands your customer you are well ahead of your competition. However in a case that all things are equal I’ll dispute “nice guys finish last”.
Before you engage your next potential client it is worth asking yourself how likeable are you?