In a recent post, we looked at the great advice given me nearly 30 years ago when I complained that my prospect did not “get” the value of my product. I was told, “Burg, when the shooter misses the target, it ain’t the target’s fault.”
Of course, it wasn’t his responsibility to get it…it was my responsibility to effectively communicate it, which I had not. And, this happens with a lot of salespeople, doesn’t it?
Why? I’m sure there are many reasons.
One of my many very-wise Facebook buds, business development coach, Kumar Gauraw replied:
“Bob, a lot of people are so fired up about their product, their opportunity or their services, they forget to pay attention to connect with the prospects and their needs. This to the extent that they don’t even bother to learn about the prospect before they put the proposition across.”
I couldn’t agree more. While huge belief in (indeed, while passion for) one’s product or service is obviously a terrific thing, it can have a downside, as well. It can cause a salesperson to forget that — when it comes right down to it — it isn’t about the product or service…it’s about the prospect. More specifically, it’s about how that product or service will add value to them, and only as THEY perceive that value.
This also comes into play when attending a Chamber event, where many potential prospects, customers and referral sources are right in front of you. Because of the great belief in your product or service and in how much value you can provide those who do business with you, you might be tempted to tell as many people as you can about it in the 60-90 minutes that the event lasts for.
If you do that, however, the opposite of what you’re looking to accomplish will most likely happen. You’ll have people turned off to you and thus closed off to learning more about you, your product or service, and how they could benefit.
Instead, focus on them and their business. Feel-Good Questions(R) such as, “How did you get started in your business?” and “What do you enjoy most about what you do?” are terrific ways to quickly establish a value-based relationship. And, of course, what I call the One *Key* Question: “How can I know if someone I’m speaking with would be a good prospect for you?” will totally position you as above the rest in your new friend’s mind.
Regardless, when time does come to present your product or service, be sure and first, do your research. Can you learn, in advance, about your prospect and his or her needs (either theirs personally or their industry’s) that would put you on the right track toward understanding them? If not, what questions are you prepared to ask them during your presentation that will provide you with this information. If you don’t do this, you simply cannot expect to present in such a way that your prospect will understand the value you can potentially bring them.
As my friend, the great entrepreneur, Sean Woodruff says,
“A professional salesperson connects our needs & desires with the benefits that their product or service provide us.”
- Always put your focus on the target…the other person.
- Understand the value that you, your product or service provides to that person.
- Recognize how they perceive its value and communicate it to them.
Do this and you’ll “hit” (in this case, “hit” meaning, “bring exceptional value to”) your target on a constant and consistent basis.