Those that have been following me for awhile know that I am an avid
reader. I love all types of books, but do tend to read books to do with
business the majority of time.
I am currently reading a book I can only call a nostalgic read in the
arena of sales. This is because the techniques and behaviors in this particular
publication are so outdated that it makes me laugh and shake my head. However,
it is great for a laugh or six. In checking the copyright date after reading a
chapter or two thinking they can’t be serious, I noticed that is was first
published in 1989.
“OMG!! That’s the eighth time we have had to do that this week!”
“Do what?” said I with confusion in my voice. “Match the price on a leaf blower that my competitor has on sale.” I will never understand why some make pricing the ultimate king in business. All pricing does is enable you to win the race to the bottom. A race no one should be anxious to win.
Businesses have to come to their collective senses. Those who have followed my blog for a while know that it is NEVER about the pricing. It is the value consumers seek. Do you win ALL of the business when pricing rears its ugly head? No, but you can win the majority of them by using creativity and by adding value to your product.
Have you ever been in a conversation where the other person is like the ‘Energizer Bunny’ and just keeps going and going and going? How long before you completely tune them out? Is it; one minute, three, maybe five or even longer? Statistics show that it is under the one-minute mark.
However, some in the sales game will use the above tactic as they feel by talking all the time they will wear you down and the only alternative to get them to shut up is to buy. Honesty check: How many of us have used the ‘gabfest technique?’ Don’t be shy, you are by yourself reading this.
Have you ever had a conversation in your personal life when someone refused to make any eye contact with you? How did it make you feel? How about, during a business meeting when the other party refuses to make eye contact? How does that make you feel? However, do you refuse to make proper eye contact with your friends/prospects?
To understand the importance of eye contact we have to go back to our caveman days, where eye contact, being part of the 93% that make up nonverbal communication, could have been the difference between life or death and even attraction and indifference. Remember, there was really no language, words, back then.
You have an incredible product/service. You have a phenomenal presentation showing the features and benefits of your product/service. However, you are not making any headway. Why?
Is this scenario familiar to anyone? Let’s take a closer look at this often occurring situation.
What we must all accept, is that consumers today are aware and educated about our products/services even before they meet us. Therefore, if you are still highlighting the features of your product/service, you are putting your audience to sleep as they in all likelihood know as much, if not more, than you may. Do not sell on features. If you do have to mention features, keep it to a minimum. When you have a good feel for the minimum, cut it in half.
Recently, I was asked if I would shadow an individual while making calls and report back to the Sales Manager as to how our program could make them more productive. This was an unusual request, as I do the shadowing after the program for a day to make sure implementation of the program has happened. However, I knew the manager quite well and, therefore, agreed.
We did not even make the first call as the challenges were immediately evident.