CHAMPION STRATEGIES – HARDISON’S TIPS – SEPTEMBER 15, 2020
The Art of Consultative Selling (Pt.2)
Connecting with the customer
Despite our increasing reliance on the digital world, people still buy using emotion over logic. Even though buyers are savvy, pressured, risk adverse and more demanding, they still want guidance from a trusted advisor. They want expertise to help analyses information and options in order to make the best decisions.
In fact, the unprecedented volume of information buyers now have access to only makes them crave more support in sorting through what matters, and finding value among all the options.
Buyers feel connected to sales professionals who have an understanding about their needs and are able to collaborate with them to find the best solution.
A seller’s teaching and commercial insights can help the buying team:
Build the case for change
Consider options they may not have thought about
Address all the individual stakeholders’ needs in the decision-making committee
Broker a partnership
This isn’t possible without a thorough understanding of the client organization, who the key stakeholders are and their value levers, and what the organization wants to achieve. Customers don’t want to be bombarded with a load of fresh data and information and be left to work out its relevance by themselves.
When sales professionals demonstrate commerciality and combine it with a genuine desire to help, customers engage and start to see the seller as a trusted business partner. Trust and value continue to be the main reason why buyers buy.
Bringing art to life
Nearly all sellers believe they are customer-focused, but in reality few are. To be successful, sales professionals must connect with their clients on a meaningful human and business level. This means blending the art and science of selling to establish credibility first, and then earn the right to ask questions which will give you the most helpful information about the buyer’s situation.
A greater focus on customer-verified outcomes will also help the seller and sales leader maintain a clean sales pipeline. These outcomes can support more effective sales forecasting, as levels of engagement can be better validated.
When you consider the average sales quota reduction over the past 5 years, and the increased pressure on the sale organization to drive more value and further differentiate in the process, the case for change is clear.
The good news is that we all can improve the level of our client relationships and the way we execute an effective sales opportunity pursuit in the process. A starting point is for organizations, and sales leaders, to recognize whether they are measuring and trying to motivate their sales professionals to create short-term results at the expense of encouraging a more holistic approach.
Make It A Champion Day!