Oooo, is that too harsh? But we do, don’t we? Well here’s the surprise hint! It’s NOT about the service or products you sell!
And I can sum it up in one word: VALUE!
Oh, please don’t worry, I am not talking about cheapening your services or products. I would NEVER suggest that. In fact, I have written about not lowering your fees even in rough economies like the one we are currently just peeking out of.
When we went through another deep recession in the late 80′s, I did not have the luxury to “name that price”! Remember, I spent my entire interior design career in selling very high-end services and products. I was selling beautiful product, but the price remained the same! So how did I sell during those times?
Looking back at my successes, and now, as a business planning consultant, I realize I brought every one of my clients VALUE. And I continued to sell even in really bad economies.
There is a very successful businessman, Kevin Nations, who says: If value is a mystery, people will not buy. I not only agree with this, I have seen it at work. We have all been sold something we were on the fence about, but the message was so compelling, we thought it would add value to our lives and we just could NOT live without it and we bought it..and it wasn’t inexpensive! Can you say, IPAD?
I know many of us are very emotionally attached to our services or products. It’s hard getting out there and selling! The rejection factor is palpable! And it’s great to be a little attached as that should turn into passion and as I always say in my sales presentation training workshops: PASSION SELLS!
However, we also have to realize there are many people out there selling “the same product or service” as you. Or at least that’s the reality of perception (and perception is reality). It’s called competition. As much as I always thought the product I sold was amazing (and it was!) there was someone else that came in after me selling beautiful product (and sometimes even less expensive).
How do you become valuable? Here are practical tips (oh yeah, and they work)!
- Know the person to whom you are selling and give them what they need! (that means you also need to know your target market! It’s truly the first thing I ask every single client I work with..that forms everything)
- Learn how you can solve their problems?
- What can you bring to the table that will set you apart from all the “noise” out there?
- How will you address your client’s needs and help them?
It’s SO NOT ABOUT YOU OR YOUR PRODUCTS OR SERVICES and SO MUCH ABOUT YOUR CLIENTS NEEDS.
When I sold high-end textiles, I became SO knowledgeable about textiles, weaves, codes and uses, that designers I called on respected my knowledge and therefore, I became valuable to them and got “ABOVE THE NOISE”! My interior design experience added to that value, too. I knew what my clients NEEDED and I DELIVERED (with spades, as they say!) I was also (and remain so) sincerely passionate about teaching and helping people have an easier time. It wasn’t ever about product (and design services are a product).
So, how do you do that? …now the cliff hanger to get all of you back! That’s what we’ll cover in the next blog!
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