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Sales Leadership
Nov 5, 2010 | Bill Brooks lock

In today’s competitive marketplace (everything’s competitive nowadays), it is essential that salespeople position themselves as the central reason why your customer buys. By the same token, it is even more essential that your customer sees it that way!

So here’s the bottom line… what must you do to ensure your customer truly feels that you "bring something to the party" and are not just an added expense item? Let’s look at five insider tips that the top salespeople do regularly to enhance the value that they bring to a sales relationship:

  • Do your homework – Invest the time to know as much as you can about your prospect as possible. Don’t show up with out-of-date, erroneous information, misconceptions or erroneous and dangerous preconceptions. Instead, show up with valuable insights into the prospect’s business, lifestyle, challenges and structure.
  • Don’t waste the prospect’s time – Quickly get down to the issues as quickly as your prospect chooses to do so. Know why you’re there, tell the prospect why you’re there and what you’d like to accomplish.
  • Ask the right questions – Questions related to problems, challenges, agitations, goals, objections, needs and outcomes. Record the answers – pay attention and don’t interrupt!
  • Recommend the correct solution – don’t become like a "carnival pitchman." Instead, present solutions, answers, strategies and compelling buying reasons that relate solely to the customer’s stated and instated reasons for buying what it is that you sell.
  • Let the prospect buy – Don’t believe you have to pressure a prospect in order for them to buy from you. Always remember that prospects buy for their reasons, not yours… and that in today’s marketplace buyers have choices. Pressure buyers and they might buy from you. Once. After that single purchase they will resent you, your product, your company and the relationship forever.

It is pretty clear that there is more to it than this, though. What is it that you must do to guarantee that you communicate your personal value to your customer? Don’t presume that they will automatically know what that is. They have no reason to do so. So, let’s take a look at these three simple strategies to put into place in your sales career. These are clearly strategic in nature – the first five are tactical. And there is a significant difference between the two. Here they are:

  • Position yourself correctly. Do all you can to ensure that you seize the right posture within the world of the market you serve. Do you want to be seen as an industry expert, guru, advocate, problem solver, celebrity or activist? Whatever your goal, choose it wisely and then master it.
  • Maintain your presence. Don’t be the master of the "hit and miss" or "transaction sales" world. Develop relationships with customers, prospects, associations, organizations, supplier groups, advocacy groups, community organizations, etc. Then maintain that presence.
  • Strive for customer visibility. Become anticipatory and strategic. Learn to master an in-depth understanding of customer problems and needed directions and be there with thoughtful, effective solutions. Become their partner, ally and enterprise wide supporter. Do this, be sure your customers know you’re doing it and you will become invaluable to them.

There you have it. Five tactics and three strategies to guarantee that you will be seen by your customers and prospects as being a steal at any price – not just an added expense or a necessary inconvenience. The difference will be worth its weight in gold to both you and your customer.

About the Author:

Bill Brooks has been one of America's most in-demand sales speakers. Delivering high content, customized, one-of-a-kind programs, he has been called upon by the most professional and discriminating sales organizations from around the world.

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