I’m Not a Salesman. But I Do Need to Sell.
If you too are caught in this apparent paradox, there is an answer.
We all need to sell things – our ideas, our ways of working, our solutions, our services and perhaps even the old car that’s sitting on the drive.
…but I’m not a sales person is a phrase I often hear. I guess that many of us still associate sales with the maligned image of a 1970s style second hand car salesman or double-glazing sales person.
If you have to sell something as part of your role, I’ll share a better way of seeing yourself. It may give you a more attractive self-image and more confidence when it comes to selling.
“Let’s go to town so we can be sold a new television” is not a phrase you hear. None of us like to be sold to. Never sell anything to anybody. We don’t like it.
“Let’s go to town and buy a new television.” Black Friday should convince you that we love to buy things. So help people to buy things.
A more accurate definition of Sales is helping people make their best buying decision possible.
The first step is to qualify the person. Do you have what they need or want? Ask a few questions. If you have a solution that solves their problem, relives a frustration or enhances their life in some way, they’re a qualified prospect. You can more forward with confidence.
At this point we know we have the answer. However, they don’t know yet know that. Knowing we have the answer, we may be tempted to enthusiastically push our solution on them. People don’t like pushy people. It reminds them of second hand car sales people. Don’t be pushy.
To make a decision people need a certain amount of information. But people don’t usually know what the important information is. Well, they know that price is important. “How much is it?” People ask this question because it’s the only question they know. Our job is to arm them with the other important considerations.
It can be helpful to think of your sales role as that of educator. Imagine that you’re a retired driveway specialist. A friend tells you they’re meeting a couple of companies about having their drive paved. As an expert in drives you say, “Make sure you ask them about these 4 things…” We arm our friend with the right questions to ask. Our role as a sales person is to arm our potential customer with those questions. As well as getting the right information they’ll start to see us as the honest broker in the process. Additionally it levels the playing field with the competition. Our prospect now knows what to ask other potential suppliers. In most cases this will expose the companies trading on price along.
At the end of the process, remember to ask for the business. They need nudging to the point where they can make a decision.
1. We’re helping people make their best buying decision possible – which might be not to buy.
2. We’re the expert and our role is to educate our potential customer as to what is important in their decision making process.
3. At the end of the process, we need to ask them if we’re going to do business together.
“I don’t mention the other services we offer as I don’t want to come across as pushy.” If you had a cure for cancer and you met someone with cancer, would you deny that person a potential cure because of your sensibilities? Not offering people products and services that may positively impact their lives is professional negligence – in my opinion. They don’t have to say yes but at least give them the option.
If improved selling skills will positively impact your business next year then come along to January’s Planning Workshop. The Early Bird offer is available until the end of November (this Thursday).
If you’d like to know more please give me a call on 07931 882 555 or drop me a line at email@example.com.
WHAT: ‘Develop Your Business’ Planning Workshop
WHO: Directors, Executives & Business Owners
WHY: Planning Delivers Better Results
WHEN: Friday 12th January 2018 8:30am – 4:00pm
WHERE: Altrincham Town Hall
INVESTMENT: £225 & £75 for a colleague (Early Bird £145) all +vat
HOW: Simply email firstname.lastname@example.org