When it comes to selling and closing deals, there is something the best sales people know, the rest of us don’t. This knowledge is, at the core, why the best sales people spend less time on deals that won’t close, why they are able to close deals other sales reps can’t and why they have the ear the most influential decision makers in their accounts and opportunities.
The best sales reps know if their product or solution is what the client needs and WHY!!!
Here is the deal. As a sales person you should never be surprised if you lose a deal. You should never sell a solution that your client or prospect doesn’t need. The best sales people know this and know what it takes to keep these things from happening.
The best sales people leverage a very keen understanding of exactly what their product or solution can do for their prospect or customer and WHY. And, when I say, “why” I mean why their solution will benefit the client or prospect’s specific, unique, business, success measurements. Selling is about understanding the business environment and the gains a prospect is looking to achieve.
The old adage that a sales person must believe in their product is accurate, but it’s only half the story. A sales person must not only believe in their product or service but more importantly they must believe, to their core, that their product or service is exactly what the customer or prospect needs for their business. They have to believe it will deliver on all their business objectives and goals better than any other option.
Unlike killer sales people, average sales people believe in the generic benefits of their products. They believe strongly that their product or service can do what it says it can do. They believe their product is the best in the industry and can change the world and their customers and prospects lives. What they aren’t as good at, is developing that confidence and awareness of the specific and unique needs of their customer or prospect’s. Their confidence is locked in features and benefits. So much so, they become blind to what specifically their prospects and customers need. When this happens, sales people become pushy, as they are confused. They don’t understand why the customer doesn’t get it. They can’t understand why the prospect doesn’t see all the value their product brings. The sales person pushes harder. They talk about all the benefits and “value” the product can provide to the prospect. Unfortunately, they are almost completely clueless about that unique clients world, how they work, what they are measured on, what the price of change is, what they are trying to accomplish, what their current processes look like, what their other options are, and how they are measuring the value of a new solution. They aren’t locked into the solution as if they were buying the product for themselves.
This is where great sales people shine. Great sales people operate from the perspective of their customers and prospects. They submerge themselves in their customers or prospects business. They wholly envision the impact their solution will have on their customer’s business. They understand the specific change issues and challenges, the impact on finances, the effect on existing processes, the competitive nuances or short-comings, etc. The best sales people know exactly how the product or service will affect their buyers and whether or not it’s a good investment.
When sales people do this, they know before the customer or prospect whether or not the solution is the right one for their business. They know the impact to their organization and how it will drive change. They understand why it’s the right choice for the customer and how the solution should be structured to deliver maximum value. In converse, they know if it’s not the solution and why. They don’t continue to chase a deal where it doesn’t makes solid business sense for the customers or prospects.
The best sales people are the best because they know whether or not their product or solution is what the client needs and why? They build their sales approach around the prospect’s business. They qualify and unqualify based on business drivers not features and benefits. They know exactly why their product or solution will work and the impact it can have on their customers or prospects organization. They know what features and add-0ns that are unnecessary and which are essential. They’re truly connected to the business.
The best sale people put themselves in their customers or prospects shoes. They have tremendous empathy and outside in vision. They waste little time or effort looking at things through their own view. They understand that perception is reality, therefore do everything they can to gain their buyers perspective.
While most of us sell thinking we have an understanding what our buyers need and want, the best sales people KNOW!
HINT: In sales, it’s not about you!