During the early 2000s, I dealt with forestry companies. Primarily with their engineering department as well as the forester’s themselves. These companies were very motivated by pricing and loyalty was as good as your pricing. They changed suppliers at a drop of a hat. However, later I did find out they did have loyalty.
They use a particular commodity that would retail anywhere from $0.81 – $0.95. There were a 100 units in a case. The average order for this commodity would be anywhere from 5-20 cases at a time.
Does anyone remember the days when you walked into a prospects/client’s office and simply stated what you had, what it did, how it did it, why they needed it and when did they want it? I do. I also know if you are doing this, you may not be getting the results you want, or need.
Those days are long gone and I for one am so happy they are. There was no ‘getting to know the prospect’ time. All we wanted to do was walk in, tell them all about the newest thing and get out with an order if we could. The sad part was, we walked out more often without the order than with. Then, things started to change and we began the ‘bonding and rapport’ process.
It was not a miraculous concept, it simply meant we started to get to know our clientele better. We slowed the process down. The end results were more sales orders than before.
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.
There is no doubt that there has been a steady increase in the individuals involved in making any kind of decision in most businesses. There are now more committees or boards that have to be somehow integrated into the decision making process. According to CEB, a global best practice insights company, there is on average 5 people that have to formally sign off on purchases. With this in mind and with the fact that you are paid on the ability to get the prospect to make a decision, purchase or not, does it not make sense to have a clear understanding on how that decision would be made?
Are your clients talking about you when you leave, or, are they talking to your competitors, ordering from them and talking about you? What is setting you apart from those competitors? Are you being different and unique enough to convince your prospect that they should be dealing with you? In other words, what are you bringing to the table that sets you apart from everyone else?
Well, that is a very confusing statement coming from someone that has been in the sales profession for over 40 years, but it is true, I don’t want to sell anything; I would much rather have you buy.
The days of ‘pushing’ your products and/or services to an unsuspecting prospect are over and have been so for a very long time and I for one am so very grateful that it is.