Are You Selling To Your Market Or Yourself?
So, has business changed much for you over the past few years?
Regardless of where you are in the world, if you answered “no” to the question above, you can stop reading and go and do something more beneficial with your time. Otherwise you will read the rest of the post, get upset and possibly waste yet more time thinking about how wrong I am. Are you still reading? So you may be intrigued… well that’s healthy. Welcome to my world!
For those of you who have been reading my posts here over the past couple of years, will know that I don’t normally discuss sales. But in actual fact the reality is that unless you do not exist, you are selling something. So let’s assume you work in or run a business. Then you are definitely selling. Perhaps you are selling an idea to peers or management, perhaps a service to your most revered client, or perhaps convincing yourself to purchase an iPad2.
If you are not pro-actively selling, you are hoping the sales will come to you. However, hope is not a strategy. There is an element of trusting in the universe to survive, but on the whole we need to be pro-active in gaining customers.
So how do we sell? The old way? Or the new way? I know of the old way, and have previously survived the old way, but I much prefer the new way, and relish in the new form of selling – by simply asking questions: “Questions are the Answer” (Zig Ziglar on selling)
It’s a consultative type of selling but should not be savoured just for consultants. I remember attending a Sales Master Class that focused a lot on FAB (Features, Advantages, Benefits). Yes, there was emphasis on connecting the benefits to the customer, but I didn’t quite get it at the time.
Now I realise that rabbiting off features and benefits doesn’t address the underlying issues for a client – their problem. By asking questions, we can find a solution to their problem, and find a FIT.
So if you were to ask only 1 question to yourself as you interact with a potential client/customer, ask this question first – “So what?” (from the book Hope is not a Strategy, well worth a read)
You already know the benefits and advantages of your product or service. For each one, ask yourself “So what?” This will assist you in defining the solution for their problem. I am an advocate of providing solutions to problems rather than selling a service!
So my question to you is, have you changed your selling style in recent times? Do you see improvements? Do you ask questions to find a solution for your client? Or do you still rely on FAB selling?
Share your insights with us below…