Product, Prospect and Persuasion
What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the word Sales? How about Salesman / Sales person? For many people it is the image of a sleazy, used car salesman. I don’t know why it is always someone who sells cars, but I do get the sleazy image pops up for many people.
Sales is rarely considered a noble profession. Yet no business would be here today if it were not for their Sales Team. It does not matter how amazing your widget, product, or service is, until someone buys it you do not have a business.
Sales is not selling whatever the person in front of you needs just to make a sale. Sales is not selling your favorite widget to someone who does not need a widget.
Sales is moving the right people to take an action that benefits them in some way.
As a professional salesperson it is your responsibility to know your product, know your prospects, and know how to connect the two of these via persuasive communication. In other words, understand the benefits of what you are selling to the people you are selling to and then lead them to buy it from you.
Wait, I am not a salesperson.
Do you interact with the end user of your product before or at time of purchase?
Do you support the users of your product after purchase?
Are you responsible for the revenue results in your business?
Are you responsible for the revenue results in the division of the business you work in?
Do you participate in meetings with investors for your product?
Do you talk about your product with anyone outside of your office?
Are you involved in attracting team members into your business?
If you can answer yes to any of these statements, you are a salesperson. In a small business, say less than 100 employees, everyone is responsible in some way for the sales (revenue) in that business.
When this is your main role, and you work on continuous improvement in your role, you are a Professional Salesperson. And that my friends is a noble profession. Without you, these small businesses would not exist.
Many of the things and services that make our lives better today would not exist without small business and the professional salespeople who tell others about them.
Okay so now you know if you are a professional salesperson, or if you want to be one. What does it take to be a Successful Professional Salesperson? It takes sales, dah.
3 Things To Be Successful in Sales
Know your product better than anyone else. What can it do and not do, who does it serve, what problems does it solve?
Know your prospect. Who benefits in some way from this product and how do they benefit from your product over the competition? There is always competition.
Learn how to be persuasive in a way that helps them to buy.|
These 3 things are equally important. When you do not develop all three areas you take away from the quality of all of them.
1 + 1 + 1 = 9
3 + 0 + 0 = 1
If you have the very best product in your industry and you try to sell it to prospects who have no need for it, it devalues your product and your knowledge of that product.
If you know you prospect and what they need, but you do not know in detail how your product can benefit them, why would they buy?
If you know your product and your prospect but you lack the ability to persuade them to buy from you, you may be closing a sale for the competition. Everyone wins except you and your business.
Know Your Product
Know it better than anyone else. What can it do and not do, who does it serve, what problems does it solve?
Research your product and the benefits it offers. Not just how it works but why it matters.
Look at it from an outside perspective. If you were shopping for this, what questions would you have?
Learn what your competition is doing and how your product stands out from their product.
Know Your Prospect
Who benefits from this product and how do they benefit from your product over the competition?
What problems does your product solve, and how has these problems?
Know everything you can about your prospect. Demographics like location, age, lifestyle.
Talk to current clients to find out why they love the product.
Know How to be Persuasive
Sales is about educating in a way that excites others to take action. Learn how to be persuasive in a way that helps them to buy. Persuasion comes naturally to some people. We all know the ‘born-salesperson’ who can ‘sell ice cubes to Eskimos’. It is also a learned skill, in fact everything you need to be a successful professional salesperson is learn-able. You must first have the desire to do so and be willing to let go of negative images of sales.
Learning persuasion and the art of sales is the topic of many, many good books, and honestly, many bad books as well. What it comes down to is that people want help buying, they do not want to be sold to. Your job is to help make it easy for others to buy from you.
"Your ideas will never fly if you can’t move people to action.” “Persuasion is a skill. The question then becomes: are you someone who is going to learn it?” Michael Johnson Medium.com
Persuasive Phrases: 9 Lines That Will Get People to Commit
On a scale of 1 to 10, how excited are you about this proposal?
On a scale of 1 to 10, how close are you to making a decision, but you can’t say 7?
Here is what most people do next.
If I can do A, B, and C for you, will you move forward?
How open are you to…?
What is stopping you from moving forward?
I bet you are a bit like me and…
Take a second and imagine…
I’m not sure if this is for you.
6 Ways to Get Better at Sales
Work smarter not harder. Instead of increasing your cold calls, doing more networking, spending more money on advertising. Be better.
To get better at sales, you must sell. You must be intentional about learning how to be better at sales.
Embrace sales as the noble profession of helping others to buy
Know your product
Know your prospect
Practice it (aha we have a 4th P)