For decades the most important words in marketing have been:
Want to get someone’s attention in an advertisement? Show them the words Free or Sale. Want to increase your closing rate? Increase the value of your Guarantee.
But selling and marketing, although the successful sales professionals do both well, are different. Marketing is getting the customer/prospect into your store or getting an appointment with them at their chosen location.
Selling is closing the deal, making the sale, convincing the customer/prospect that your products and services are worth more to them than their money. The top sales producers know it is much, much more. They know that selling is ‘solving the customers problems, needs and wants.’
So the # 1 most important word in selling is SOLUTIONS.
The next time you want an appointment with a customer/prospect first find out the problems, needs and wants your products and services will solve for them. For example, if you sell forklifts it is fair to think the solutions the buyer is looking for includes the need to move materials/products around a warehouse setting in a safe, efficient cost effective manner.
The sales professional that shows the buyer how the benefits of the forklift will accomplish this, and the company’s benefits will make the sale faster and usually at higher profits than the order taker who wastes the buyer’s time telling him about all the features the machine has. When you show the buyer the solutions to their problems, needs and wants by selling your benefits, not features, you will also close the sale faster.
Move one step further and discover the buyer’s individual problems, needs and wants and provide the solutions for them. All you have to do is ask them what they are. “Mr. Smith, what material handling problems are you looking to solve with a new forklift?” “Mr. Smith, what unique needs do you need to solve in your material handling process?”
It does not matter what product or service you sell. If you provide the SOLUTION to the customer’s problems, needs and wants easier for them than your competition, you will be the one who gets the sale.
OK, now I know someone is thinking, “All my customers have the problem of not wanting to pay a fair price for my products and services.” I am the first to agree price is very important, but it’s an obstacle that you can overcome.
You overcome the price objection by increasing the benefits you provide the buyer. I know you have heard that time and time again. But now go one step more. Put a dollar value on your benefits. Now you are not only addressing the customer’s problem (money), you are doing it with the benefits that will solve their other problems, needs and wants.
Here are 4 ways to turn your intangible benefits into a dollar amount that will show the customer/prospect you offer a better value.
- Examples of how others have suffered money loss when not using your benefit (horror stories).
- Testimonials showing the dollar value others put on your intangibles.
- Ask the customer what he/she feels the dollar value of your benefits are.
- Tell the customer the dollar value of your benefits. (You are the Expert)
The steps to selling solutions
- Determine the buyer’s problems, needs and wants (general and specific).
- Determine and create benefits that will solve those problems, needs and wants.
- Put a dollar value on your benefits.
All you have to do is combine these steps with the closing technique(s) you like. My favorite of the 23 closing techniques in my book, “How To Take Customers Away From Your Competition” are:
- Closing Techniques #3 – Pros & Cons Close
- Closing Techniques #5 – The Choice Close
- Closing Techniques #7 – Higher Price Agreement Close
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- “Join The Profit Club”
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- “You’re Not Lost Until You Are Out Of Gas”
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Invite Bob Janet to help your sales professionals and sales support staff increase sales and profits. Bob’s selling and marketing skills and techniques are based on 40 plus years of “Been there, Done that” front-line experiences. His long and proven track record of success combined with his unique speaking and teaching ability makes him uniquely qualified to present selling and marketing skills and techniques to business owners, sales professionals and sales support staff. For more information contact Bob at 704-882-6100, Bob@BobJanet.com or www.BobJanet.com.