The JF Guest Author Spot
The word sell derives from the meaning "to serve." Are you concentrating on the sale without serving first? Always think TLC - Think Like A Customer. Concentrate on creating such a selfless experience of giving that most customers will feel compelled to buy from you if your product or service is anywhere close to being a solution for them.
If you have ever traveled in the Caribbean Islands you have undoubtedly encountered the local merchants selling different wares. The local merchants usually approach you and offer something upfront as a gift for you. These merchants are practicing a form of reciprocation or obligation. They hope by providing you with something for free that you will feel obligated and compelled to buy something. The theory behind obligation and reciprocation is strong. However, the principles become much stronger if the giving is selfless and without expectation of return.
As a salesperson, it is sometimes hard to not think of the ultimate goal of the sale. However, I think you can switch your thinking dynamic to one of concentrating solely on the customer and you will see abundant rewards.
There are three stages that a customer goes through during a sale.
1 - Character/Trust
2 - Emotion
3 - Logic
It is true that emotions can be overwhelming for the customer in the sales process. However, if the customer does not approve of your character and trust you then the customer's normal defense mechanism will not come down. The customer will never reach the emotional stage of the sale.
Your first meeting with a potential customer should start with selfless giving. Don't just qualify or interview a customer, communicate and bond with him. Try to think and communicate in a way that a neighbor helping another neighbor would think and act. Use the simplest and most effective tool you have and that is humanity. You should as I call it, nice'em to death. All the sales techniques in the world will not be better than selfless giving.
Let me share a few recent personal experiences that demonstrate the power of giving. My wife bought a Land Rover automobile. From the beginning, Mike the salesperson made the whole experience about us. First, he communicated with her about all of her desires and made sure she was the focal point of the communications. He made sure to make me feel comfortable and he made friends with and entertained my son. The negotiation process which can be grueling became a friendly and normal exchange by breaking from traditional sales techniques. The process was more of a sharing process than win or lose.
When we went to the dealership for delivery of the vehicle, he had gifts for everyone including a Teddy bear for my son. Two weeks after the sale, he delivered a football to my son personally autographed by Carson Palmer, the quarterback of the Cincinnati Bengal's and customer of the dealership. One year later, he delivered a book written and autographed by Johnny Bench the retired Hall of Fame Catcher of the Cincinnati Reds. Let me ask you a question. Would you consider buying another vehicle from this salesperson if this was your experience? The experience was unbelievable. The good news is that you don't have to go to such levels to reach a point of WOW for the customer. Giving comes in many forms beyond presents.
My other recent personal experience of selfless giving came at a book signing I performed at Notre Dame Book Store for my new book. As I entered the book store, the assistant director of the book store greeted me warmly and handed me a bag with several gifts from the store. I felt honored from the beginning. I was given a VIP tour of the University, taken to a football banquet, football pep rally, given press passes for the football game to attend with an ex coach of Notre Dame and taken to dinner. How would you feel if this had been your experience? The kindness and professional attitude displayed was not contrived, it was genuine.
All the people involved in the experiences I have just shared truly understood the power of giving. I invite you to review your last several business experiences and ask yourself the following questions. "Did I give enough?" and "Did I give without expecting in return?"
Mark Tewart, author of "How To Be A Sales Superstar - Break All the Rules and Succeed While Doing It"
To read the first chapter of How to be a Sales Superstar and to receive several FREE bonuses from Mark Tewart, visit www.marktewartlive.com.
Full tour details are posted at http://virtualblogtour.blogspot.com/2008/10/how-to-be-sales-superstar-by-mark.html
I promised to provide you with details of Top Sales Experts who are presenting over at Business Expert Webinars this week - here you go:
Startup Sales: Educating the Sales Evangelist
Topic: Small Business
11/19/08 1:00pm EASTERN TIME
Presented by Karl Goldfield
Want to translate that passion you have for what you have created? Struggling to find the right way to explain the value, benefits, and desired outcomes of using your creation? Then join this webinar and learn how to educate your startup sales team. With the right language and process the training of new hires can take weeks instead of months. You found the talent, now teach them to evangelize. ... read more
11/24/08 11:30am EASTERN TIME
Presented by Kelley Robertson
Most people start the year with great plans and ambitious goals. They take action and make some progress toward achieving their goals. However, this momentum quickly fades because it is difficult to maintain the energy you had at the beginning of the year for a full twelve months. One month you're ahead of schedule but a few short weeks later you find yourself struggling to catch up. A few deals fell ... read more
TRANSITION FROM WORK TO RETIREMENT
Topic: Personal Development
11/24/08 5:30pm EASTERN TIME
Presented by Peter Nicholls
The traditional concept of retirement as the time to stop working and start dying has all but disappeared. People are recalibrating their lifestyle almost continuously. Age 60 is no time to be quitting life. But it's an important time to consider whether or not to continue working and the role of work in life. Far from being old, people in their 60's are looking forward to living a healthy, active ... read more
Link to original post