All sales involve taking buyers on a journey from where they are now to where they want to get to.

When working with business owners we drum into them that no one cares about you.  They don’t care about you or your solution until they know you have something relevant for them.  That you can provide insights into something they’re grappling with.  A way of solving specific problems they’re experiencing.

Start by walking a mile in their shoes.  Put yourself in their position.

Think in terms of:

  • Exactly where they are now.
  • What issues they’re facing.
  • Where they want to get to. Outcomes they want.
  • And what’s stopping them. Obstacles in the way.

Unless you fully comprehend these, you have zero chance of engaging your buyer and presenting a solution.

We covered this in a recent strategy session where we had our client and his team think in terms of why their potential clients would be interested in speaking with them and what outcomes they’d be looking for.

When speaking with your prospects, drill into the problems they’re facing, and the implications of not solving them.  Both from a company and personal point of view.  Unless the implications are big enough, they’ll live with the status quo and won’t take action.

Then probe for outcomes.  Both left brain and right brain.

Left brain is facts and figures.  If you save them money, how much, over what timeframe.  If you reduce time to get a job done, by how much.  What could the people do instead and what effect would that have on overall productivity and bottom line.  Quantify as much as possible.

Right brain is about feelings and emotions.  How will they feel once they’ve achieved the outcome.  Will they be recognised in their organisation?  Will their status increase?  What’s in it for them personally?

It’s important to over both aspects if you want to win the sale. 

Find out what’s stopping them from achieving their goals.  Make it tangible.  Quantify this as much as possible.  Your prospects have to realise they can’t solve the problem themselves and need help.  Yours!

Only now should you present a solution which focuses on the outcomes they want.

However, at this stage don’t make the mistake of going into the detail of how you’ll deliver.  While they’ll want to know at some point, this isn’t the right time.

At this stage keep bringing the focus back to why they need to solve the problem and the outcome they’ll get.

BTW, also think in terms of who could lose out if the sale goes ahead.  They could kill the deal.  So handle it.

Obviously there’s a lot more to effective selling – so if you’d like help closing more high value business, especially when there are multiple stake holders involved, give me a hoy.  We’ll work together to help you sustainably grow your organisation.

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