Let’s face it--no one likes a pushy salesman. The image of a Slick Willy pops into our minds as we envision him in a plaid sports coat, trying to sell us a mediocre used car, a set of unnecessary steak knives, or the latest greasy innovation in skincare. His slightly annoying ways of trying to make a sale leave us with an uneasy feeling as we resist his advances and keep our wallets firmly planted in our pockets. Not open for business today, Slick.
Pushy salesmen, or businesses, for that matter, are a dime a dozen. These companies focus on sales, sales, sales, without any emphasis on customer service and satisfaction. They indeed don’t realize the importance of a fundamental step in the creation of an ideal sales environment--the creation of a sense of need or urgency that causes the customer to “realize” that they need your product or service.
Creating Quality Relationships
When it comes to generating business and achieving sales, it’s all about the relationships that you form with customers and how you continue to serve them. Consumers are now more educated than ever, with thousands of products and information at their very fingertips via the internet. They won’t start a business relationship with you if they don’t feel heard, validated, and respected. You need to focus on creating that quality connection with your prospective clients to keep them interested and engaged, not just in your products, but in YOU as well.
Creating “The Need” For Your Products And Services
Second only to a quality relationship is the crucial and essential step of creating within the mind of the consumer a need for what you are offering. Here are some vital steps in creating the “driving need to consume” in the minds of your prospects.
Help Your Prospect Recognize Their Needs. No one will purchase a product they don’t first acknowledge that they need or want. Get them to see their own needs by asking general questions that point to you and your products as the solution. Market yourself as the best possible solution to their “problem,” and let them close the sale in their minds as they purchase from you.
Sell Less, Listen More. Everyone recognizes a pushy sales pitch, and nothing is more repugnant to a consumer than a Slick Willy at their door. The keys to any successful close are a listening ear and a willingness to fulfill a customer’s expectations. Allowing the customer to begin drawing their conclusions by having meaningful conversations with you about their needs will make your sales almost effortless.
Sell Your Abilities As A Problem Solver. Especially when dealing with businesses, once you have a prospective client’s attention, make the most of your communication by emphasizing your ability to provide business solutions to their problems. Wherever you can, articulate where you can minimize issues and add value to their lives. Customers respond well to a personalized touch, so take advantage of opportunities to personalize their experience with you. Remember--salespeople don’t close sales. Problem solvers do.
Continue To Communicate Value As Part Of Your Relationship. Keep your customers engaged and informed by providing personalized communication through notes, phone calls, emails, and texts. Share relevant content that will be of use to them, and continue to ask what their needs and desires are as you create new products and services to share with them. Consider this a way for you to do personalized market research when developing your business; this is an effective way of generating repeat business with established clients.
Help Them Identify Their Problem, Then Offer Them A Solution. Through a series of engaging, thought-provoking questions, ask your customers what their needs are. Gather information that will allow you to tailor your products and services in that direction, making you a logical solution to their “problem.” If you are known as a problem solver rather than a salesman, you are more likely to generate those initial responses to your inquiries and land better sales.
Remember: Customer Service Is Key. Rise above your competition by offering what they are unwilling or unable to. Anticipate your customer’s needs, and then deliver more than they ask or expect. Be the provider that consistently exceeds expectations, and you’ll create loyal customers for life as well as generate new business from your ever-growing network of satisfied friends and family. Maintain the highest standards for customer service when dealing with your clients, and you will never have to worry about generating a steady source of income through sales and service.
Keep It Positive!
As you focus on ways to close your sales and deepen relationships, it is essential to focus on the solutions you offer rather than the problem or need that the customers may have. Emphasize that you are the solution to their problem in a subtle yet persistent way. Communicate your desire to partner with them to facilitate filling their need, and keep communication open and free-flowing to exchange ideas, receive constructive criticism, and improve your standing.
Embrace the opportunity that you have to help your customers overcome challenges, and enter each business transaction with integrity and passion for service. Your customers will quickly recognize the difference between your exceptional products and service and the meager offerings of your competitors. You have what it takes!