Be different. That’s it. Nothing more. All five steps come down to this. We can go round and round discussing all of the elements in the sales process and the importance of each. That would take some time. A lot of time. Instead, let’s talk about being different and, if you are perceived by your customer as being just that, your sales will increase dramatically. Simple.
Of course, it helps if your are seen as being different in a good way! I talk about being R.U.M. … Remarkable, Unique, and Memorable. Becoming this will naturally lead to exceeding your customer’s expectations and this leads to sales, repeat business, and referrals. It is the natural progression toward these desirable outcomes.
While this has always been important, doing so has never been easier! The reason is also pretty simple. When we talk about being R.U.M., it has to be compared to something or someone else like … your competition.
Guess what? By and large they are flat out terrible. They don’t respond in a timely manner. They take the easy, the lazy way, out. From what I have seen, this is the new normal for selling and why not? If everyone else is doing it, you don’t need to do any better. I’ve been there myself.
I recently went on a call with a salesperson that I am training. Neither of us knew anything about these folks although they had done business with the company before. Before we met with the client, we did our research. Our due diligence.
We looked at previous orders to put together a list of names. We Googled each and checked LinkedIn. We looked at their companies to determine their services. We took notes. As it turns out, we were dealing with both the customer’s internal and external teams.
When we did meet, we told them that we had done this research in an effort to be better prepared and have a better understanding of the project. We developed an instant rapport and I know that this was a huge part of that.
The meeting went very well. We finished by asking them how they wished to be informed of our progress and we also told them that we would be sending them a written recap of the details of the meeting. We wanted to make sure that we completely understood their needs and we might have a few more questions to ask.
We delivered a two-page recap document to them that same day. This is a complex deal with a lot of moving parts. It is also a high dollar value opportunity. The customer immediately responded with the necessary answers to our questions.
Where to now? The salesperson will be providing them with weekly updates of our progress as well as updates whenever we reach a new stage of the process. Quality touches, at unexpected times, have been planned out. The expectations for what and when have been clearly defined and agreed to. We will exceed each.
These are sophisticated buyers and folks like these are generally driven by service rather than by price. However, what if we assumed that all buyers are driven by service? To a large extent, I think that most are when it comes to higher value investments. I’m a little more discriminating when I spend $10,000.00 vs $10.00.
There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that, providing we continue to present ourselves as being different, this opportunity will convert. If you have been in sales for any decent amount of time, you should have developed a sense for this. Of course, there will be a professional, full meal deal, proposal!
The scenario that I have shared outlines a simple five-step process …
- Prepare and research
- Clarify and confirm
- Be responsive and proactive
- Perform quality touches
- Set and exceed expectations
Be different. Make more sales. What could be simpler?
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