Deal Busters: Three Common but Stupid Barriers to Sale Success (Don’t Do This!)
Struggling salespeople have real problems meeting their sales goals despite investing a lot of time and effort into their job. On analysis, they fail in one or more of three areas that sales pros have mastered. Fix these and fix poor sales performance.
They Don’t Know the Value of Their Products
Unbelievably, there are salespeople who don’t know their products inside and out, forwards and backwards, and understand the product’s value to the customer. I’m shocked when I ask a salesperson about product a detail that I think would be important to make an informed decision and they don’t know the answer.
All customer confidence evaporates when a salesperson responds to a product question with a discount.
It’s even more unbelievable when they don’t know how to get me the answer. I’ll just buy somewhere else, thank you.
You may have had the same experience at a restaurant when you asked the server about a dish and they’ve never tasted it and can’t tell you about it.
Sales superstars know their product. It’s easy to do! Get every bit of information about your products and study. It takes an average of four passes through the information for you to remember what you need to know. So stick with it.
Find the product expert. Ask them lots and lots of questions. Learn why the product developers designed the features the way that they did.
Product expertise creates profitable confidence.
The more you know about your products, the more confidence you’ll have, and the more of them you can sell profitably.
They Don’t Know the Competitor’s Products
Have you ever asked a salesperson, “So how does this stack up against your competition?” and they reply with, “You’ll have to ask them.” That’s not a sales person, that’s an anti-sales person. They are pushing deals to the competition.
Sales superstars learn about competitors’ products. In fact, they know as much about competing products as they do their own product. It’s easy. Go to their website. Ask them to send you sales information. Play with the products every time you can.
Figure out why customers buy from the competitor as well as why they don’t buy.
The real professional’s secret is to initially look at competitive product like you weregenuinely interested in buying them. You’ll learn why customers choose competitive products. Later look for flaws to better find ways to present your products in a more favorable way.
They Don’t Know How to Understand the Customer’s Motivation
Each customer is motivated by slightly different things. Struggling salespeople believe that the same thing motivates all customers so they use the same approach to each customer. They begin by discussing their product. Do that and you’ll always struggle.
Assume all customers buy the same way and you’ll struggle making sales.
It’s probably because they’ve been taught that all customers want to know WIIFM -what’s in it for me. While that is partially true, there is way more to connecting with customer motivation than that.
Sales professionals lead with the need and understand customer motivators such as desired outcome and their priorities.
They first find out how and why each customer makes the decisions that they do. For some people, they are driven by politics, so they will pick what their boss recommends. Others will choose to minimize risk. Leaders will choose to create new business outcomes and advance their competitive advantage. Financial analysts will select based on return on investment or cash flow improvements.
You can figure out what motivates your customer by asking them questions such as:
- “How will you know which is the best choice?”
- What is the most important thing that you’re going to consider as you make your choice?”
- What are your success criteria for this project?”
- “What do you need to accomplish your mission?”
With this information, sales professionals can adjust how they present product capabilities to align with customer motivations and win almost every time.
Let’s have a conversation if you think my ideas can help you find and close more customers or to invite me to speak at your forthcoming meeting. Find a mutually agreeable time at MarksSchedule.com or message me through LinkedIn