By Robert Craven
Nine obvious but often ignored facts that will turbo-charge your business sales
With so much mediocrity about, you can stand out if you improve the way that you sell. Robert Craven explains how.
This article, in a nutshell:
- Is for those of you who find selling difficult
- Will show you how to make more sales which will increase your profits and cash-flow (the real benefit)
Fact one: If your customers are not listening it is not their fault!
It is your fault. You are not communicating in a way that they can hear your message.
Fact two: Your sales presentations/offers and so forth are probably all wrong
A quick example: A consultant visits us and his typical, boring, predictable, mind-numbing presentation goes:
“My name is… I work for…, and we employ x people…, based in… set up in… and what we do is specialise in…”
This was dreadful. It was all about them and not about me. It was all about what they do and not what I want. I am afraid that he mistook me for someone who cared about this nonsense.
Eventually the salesman got close to the climax and I started to wake up a little “and the solutions we offer include…” (and I was thinking “yes but how does that help me and my particular problem?”) and finally he reached his peak with the inevitable words “and as a result you will be more profitable.”
At last he talks about what I am interested in. But he has offered a one-size-fits-all solution and he has offered it too late. He still hasn’t asked me about my problem or what I am looking for. Clearly he is not really interested in helping me; he is only interested in making a sale so I graciously boot him out of the office, thank him for his time while wishing he hadn’t wasted my precious time.
So… why does every sales presentation bore you to death before telling you what you want?
Don’t give answers till you know what the customer’s problems/issues/needs are.
Fact three: People have problems/hurts/needs that they want sorted out.
You need to know what they are. To find out what their issues are you need to ask questions, shut up and listen to the answers.
Fact four: Customers are only interested in how you can help them relieve the pain or get more pleasure.
I repeat, to find out what their issues are you need to ask questions, shut up and listen to the answers.
Fact five: People will buy from you if you are able to cut to the chase.
Tell them what they will get. Don’t bore them. Be precise and focused. Don’t waste their time.
Fact six: People don’t buy from you for what you do but for what your product or service will do for them(probably after you are gone).
This is what they want to know: how will they be better off after you have gone?
Suddenly, selling becomes easy. Find out their hurts/problems/issues, find out what THEY want after you’ve left, focus on telling them how you can deliver it.
So, tell them how you will make things better for them. Next…
Fact eight: Customers love it when you make it clear that you can deliver.
So tell them: “We can do that” and give them some brief proofs or examples.
Fact nine: Customers love it when you shut up.
So, what I am saying is as follows: be clear about what the customer will get and how it will improve things for them. Remember people buy for one of two reasons; to be happier or more profitable, i.e. they want more profit/income/sales/time and/or less risk/costs/stress.
If you follow the approach outlined above several things will start to happen.
- You will clarify your offering in your own mind, which will make it easier for you to communicate (by email, phone, letter, advert)
- Your communication becomes simpler and more powerful
- Your communication becomes obvious. It becomes crystal clear what you are saying
- You will be remarkable. You will stand out from the crowd and you will be talked about. Someone who offers simple and obvious solutions will get the business
If you think you can’t sell then you are probably right, you won’t sell. The techniques above will put you in a different state of mind, “can sell, and will sell”. Sounds good to me.
– Robert is one of the UK’s best-known and sought-after speakers on customers: finding, delighting and keeping more and better customers and clients
– He is not full of theoretical rhetoric; he offers practical solutions – tangible business results.
– Robert’s work on marketing and strategy has been widely published and acted upon by thousands of businesses and agencies, from BlackBerry to Barclays, from Nando’s to AirBus….
Specialties: how to find and keep customers and clients… creating the process and systems to run the business you want to run.
Robert can be reached on +44 (0)1225 851044 firstname.lastname@example.org