Are You Ignoring Your Best Secret Weapon in Sales?
Because customers project what their future experience will be based on their current experience it’s critical that we make every sales encounter inherently valuable.
For the last few posts we’ve been discussing exactly how to go about doing that. Today I want to discuss an incredible source of value that under-appreciated and underutilized.
Helping Clients Better Understand Their Needs
In our last post we discussed the power of high-value questions. One outcome of using superior questions is that your clients come to better understand their own needs. When you assist them in better understanding and objectifying their needs (and as a result what the requirements will be to meet those needs) you are adding value.
Performing an excellent discovery with the prospect will facilitate mutual understanding of what it will take for them to succeed. Your discovery can also help them better understand their own internal dynamics and help them get a firm grasp of the tools needed to move their organization forward.
I will be devoting a future series of posts on how to perform a professional discovery. Suffice it to say, that professional discovery skills on your part are essential for both you and your prospect’s success. Clients will always value a professionally executed discovery.
Help Clients See the Path to Success
When clients better understand their own needs they are better able to see the path to success. This vision is critically important and you have at your disposal an incredible source of value that you may not be utilizing.
The Cloudy Path
When clients consider a new project, idea, or solution they will be unsure about how its adoption will actually effect their organization. The path to success is cloudy for them. When the steps ahead are unclear, they perceive heightened risk. That heightened risk very often causes them to slow down or even halt their progress as they assess all the dynamics associated with moving forward.
Present a Clear Vision
When you present a clear vision of how your prospect can achieve their objectives or help them develop their own vision, you are adding value. With complex projects and objectives it is common that prospective clients are in completely new territory. They may embark on a project such as this infrequently – perhaps even only once in a lifetime.
You are in a perfect position to add value precisely because you are frequently involved in such projects. I find this area tremendously unleveraged out in the field.
I typically find two reasons for this:
- Information is being intentionally withheld, or
- The value of experience is underappreciated.
Withholding Information – Intentionally withholding information is shortsighted. Information about how customers can go about achieving their goals is a sample of how you solve. It’s compelling evidence that you can accomplish what you say you can. The truth is, knowledge is not the key to success – execution is. So withholding information is only handicapping your message.
The Value of Experience is Underappreciated – Because we are exposed to our solutions and projects day in and day out, we tend to assume that everything we know in these given areas is common knowledge. Regardless of the field you are don’t take your experience for granted – instead leverage it.
Your Experience Represents Tremendous Value
Your experience represent tremendous value to customers, so share it. Share tips, stories, planning tools, sample project plans, outcomes of similar clients, etc. Basically the secrets to success. Help your client see that there is a clear set of steps and actions that they can take that will guarantee success.
In some cases, the value you bring in these areas can surpass the value of the solution itself and will position you as a consultant and trusted adviser. Be sure to leverage this unexpected value in every opportunity.
Closing Tip: Help clients understand their needs and present a clear vision of how they can achieve their goals by sharing your wisdom and experience from similar projects.
Until next time!