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Most of us never want to hear that disaster is headed in our direction. When you know the possibility of a coming disaster, your priorities shift very quickly. The sales lesson I want to share is very real. My wife and I were faced with having to decide what we wanted to save and what we needed to save in our home. We live in a community near the Cleveland National Forest, in Southern California. We were fortunate that the fire never reached us even though our neighborhood was under evacuation alert. The initial evacuation warning notice put us in panic mode and we focused on all the things we wanted to save as we prepared to evacuate our home. The truth is, our home is still littered with moving boxes by the doors which contain the memories of our lives and the valuable papers needed to reconstruct our lives. Ultimately, we were fortunate and didn't need to exercise the evacuation notice and we count our blessings. We were only subjected to the falling ash from the fire storm. God bless the firemen who battled these fires.
If disaster were to knock on your door tomorrow, can you quickly locate and find your important boxes that contain your most valuable possessions? What we learned from this experience is it can happen to any of us. You must like the Boy Scout motto - Be Prepared! We encourage you to establish a list of the most important documents you want to save. In our case, it was keeping the company documents safe and not necessarily my journals which were some of first things we secured. My wife was also careful to secure family videos and photo albums. What we needed was to have the home and business back-up files secured and ready for travel. Through this experience, we are now better prepared for disaster as long as we have enough warning.
The Emotional Side of Decisions
When I look at what we initially packed in the boxes to save, and how we determined our priorities, I realized our emotions won over reason. There is a difference between what we wanted to save and what we needed save. It is almost funny how our wants won over our needs even in a disaster situation. If you are looking for an advantage in selling, focus on turning the needs of your prospects into wants. When your customers want what you sell, they will buy.
Where to Focus Your Selling Skills
This need-versus-want challenge is similar to the old metaphor that states, "You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink." The advantage goes to the person who makes the horse thirsty enough to drink. In selling, we gain the advantage anytime we make our prospects thirsty enough for our services that they begin to crave the difference our services make. Our role in selling is to create the want! It helps to create a mental image of desire, before and after, in their mind.
Take the weight loss as an example. We often see a before and after picture ourselves when we start thinking about losing weight. Your prospects must be able to visualize how they will benefit from your services after they invest in you. If you are selling to someone, where should you focus your attention? The answer is easy: You focus on the "want" every time. An example most of us can relate to is when we need to lose weight, let's say about 10 pounds. Nothing will happen until we truly want to lose those 10 pounds. Something has to motivate us. It might be a wedding, class reunion or the fact that we are the heaviest in our group of friends.
We consult with many business owners and almost all of them need our services to become more profitable and to increase sales. It is only when they crave the results we offer that they invest in our solutions.
Steve Martinez Is the author of Sales Impactivator a sales e-publication for success oriented individuals. As the President of Selling Magic, his company teaches business professionals how to automate the selling process, preventing sales people and business owners from experiencing the hard lessons in selling. Steve has consulted with businesses around the country sharing his 25 years of sales and marketing experience to eliminate sales failure. Steve uses his experience as a National Sales Manager and National Account Executive to share the real-world lessons in sales. http://www.sellingmagic.com
Over at Salesopedia, Clayton is in conversation with Craig Elias, who explains what "Trigger Events" are and how they can boost your sales - just click on the image to listen in. (I had a Skype conversation with him once and I couldn't get a word in - so best to just listen!)
Two interesting blog posts for you - Drew Stevens (what a great guy) discusses "The Problem With Sales Training" and Brian Carroll, who always has something interesting to say (at least that what he told me) tells us that "Execution is the key to go-to-market success"
Finally, if you are a regular visitor, you will know that I am involved with, and support, The Customer Collective. They in turn are supported by amongst others, Oracle, who next week are spending literally thousands of pounds sending out a thankyou bundle to all subscribers of TCC. If you would like to receive a surprise box, all you need to do is sign up here - no cost, no obligation, no inbox full of unwanted messages, but you do get the opportunity to vote on articles and make comments.
It's the kind of "no-brainer" decision I like.
Tomorrow: "So just what are the essential leadership qualities?" - at least, my take on them, but what do I know?
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