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Today I got yet another email from a sales person trying to sell….well it doesn’t matter, you can fill in the blank, but this happened to be some kind of software. To tell you the truth, I don’t even know what it does, let alone what it can do for me! And that is totally the fault of the sales person. This email came after many others AND a call! But this sales person made deadly sins of sales not understanding MY needs and how he can help me.
It started out with an email. I just ignored it and another came, and another and another. I think they got my information from a webinar I signed up for. This “tactic” is very common now! So if a webinar seems pertinent to your business, you willingly give your information.
After about 6- 8 emails week after week, i knew if I just kept ignoring them they would continue. (I know I could have reported it as spam, but my nice side came out) All of the emails went through the old tactic of “I know you are really busy, but I just want to take a few of your minutes”. That is about as effective as….well you know!
And I thought..I should just check out what this is all about. Maybe this could be helpful to my business. But he would never know that because he just jumped into his sales presentation. Never asking me one single question except how large my company was. No more uncovering needs…so I really just checked out because he was giving me information that was not helpful to me at this time. That’s what YOUR clients do if you show them anything that is not relevant to them.
And before you think that’s not you..it was me before I had to figure out a better way to sell and how I now train. And I have observed this more than I want to even think about. It’s really how we sell.
I’ve heard, we have the best customer service;(yeah, who doesn’t?) our product exceeds standards of the industry (do I need that?); these colors are very fashion forward (says who and how does that help me?); our design firm offers full service for every client (that’s exactly what the other design firms said!); and other benefits that will be amazing for them. Any of these sound familiar?
These are all benefits, but who do they benefit and how many times has the client heard that. Right into the black vortex of product or services. Then competition takes over but you’re all on an even playing field instead of pulling apart from them by knowing how you can HELP that particular client. Then, many times, it boils down to price wars. And if there is no value, who do you think that person will buy from more often?
If you don’t find how you can fill a need every single time which becomes a value..value will always be defined by price.
At the end of the call, I said I really did not understand the product and said I don’t think I’d be interested. He did not say anything that made me feel like he really cared about what I needed to know to further the sales process. He only asked if he could email a follow-up. I said not really…
Flash forward one week..there he was again! “…I know you are so busy, but I am following up and would like to take just a few minutes of your time…” So miss nice girl, turned into miss annoyed and emailed a pretty stern email demanding I be taken off the list and for him not to call or try to get a hold of me in any way. If he does, I will report it as spam!
So not only did he NOT get a sale, he LOST business!
I know this might seem extreme, but I have observed this over and over again in different incarnations..it does happen all the time. Results are inconsistent or flat business.
What is the gigantic lesson? Uncover your clients needs before you even take one single sample or portfolio out. Then and only then will you prove your value! And people will always buy if they find value. Otherwise you turn into just another sales person!