“I have never worked a day in my life without selling. If I believe in something, I sell it, and I sell it hard.”
~ Estée Lauder
Do You Believe in What You Are Selling?
One of the biggest consequences of our Melbourne lockdown right now is the fact that I can’t visit my chiropractor because I really can’t justify my situation as a health emergency.
It has made me reflect on the benefits of a smooth selling process.
You see, Ashley doesn’t ask me what I want him to do each time I show up to an appointment and he doesn’t ask me how often I want to visit. He’s not all that interested in my preferences… just my outcomes.
We have the discussion about my goals at the start of each series of appointments, then he tells me what I need to do and how often I need to show up at the clinic for an adjustment. Beyond that, he has his own ways of measuring my progress toward those goals and he tells me how I’m doing on his scale.
When I’m ‘too busy to show up for appointments’ he tells me exactly what he thinks about my attitude to my health and what the consequences will be.
He’s usually right.
Is he thinking about how to increase his sales volume or is he thinking about my health and wellbeing?
To be honest, it doesn’t really matter what he’s thinking because the difference that a proper adjustment makes to my mental and physical health is dramatic. Post-adjustment my ability to handle stress rises, my focus improves, and I’m able to make better decisions and deliver better work.
The same is true for your prospects!
They simply don’t have the knowledge and expertise to make adequate decisions and they have a vested interest in downplaying their needs unless they are fully aware of the gravity of their situation.
If you believe in what you are selling, you will make your life much easier if you only create options that fulfil your customers’ real needs and if, like Ashley does, you are prepared to say, “No. I cannot deliver value on that basis.”
Are You Presenting to People who Need Your Solution?
The most important reason to qualify your prospects is so that neither you nor they are wasting time. Have you ever seen the offer of a free consultation and thought, “I don’t know if it will be worth my time even if I don’t have to pay.” It’s a compelling argument.
I have a string of qualifiers before I let people register in my courses (especially where there is group interaction involved) because I’m not really interested in having people who simply pay me. I want people who are investing in themselves and who will benefit from the solutions I offer.
Does that seem too hard?
It’s actually more a question of calling out the problem you solve loudly and clearly. Your solution may be fantastic, but if the people you offer it too don’t yet feel the pain of that problem, then they are unlikely to purchase.
There’s more to it than that, and I teach the details of helping prospects feel their need in Confident Conversion: 90 days to More Cash, More Clients, More Impact my online course but the essential thing to understand is that your prospects have many problems and so they need to solve them sequentially. If the problem you solve isn’t screaming at them every time they turn around, they’ll focus on solving something else first.
When you crank up the volume on their pain, they are prepared to step onto your sales slide.
Have You Found a Way to Make the Abstract Visible?
One of the people in a recent Confident Conversion: 90 days to More Cash, More Clients, More Impact group session had a problem. The benefits of her service were rather abstract and she was struggling to help prospects feel the pain and see the results so that they would commit.
Many businesses face this challenge – both those which are service and those which are product focused. The craft of selling likes in helping them make connections between things they can see and feel and those that they can’t. Once you’ve done that, price becomes irrelevant.
Last week I was talking to a business owner who has recently started working with clients in the US. He was shocked to receive a tax bill from the IRS for over USD$9,000 and he ended up seeking additional advice from an accounting firm that specializes in both Australian and US taxes. The difference between what his current accountant charges and what this expert charges is stunning, but the fee paled in comparison with the appeal of making the problem go away.
His account of the sales conversation was a study in how to turn an abstract “this is what the IRS thinks I owe because of X,Y, and Z, but I’ve calculated it as $0.00” into a clear picture of two very concrete choices that contrasted misery and joy.
Ashley (my chiropractor) does it, too. His sessions are bookended with an analysis of what I’m experiencing and at each session he reflects back to me how I was feeling on my previous visit. He has even managed to turn the spinal visualisation into a kinaesthetic connection that reinforces the value of regular sessions for my overall health and peak performance.
Every business must do this if they want to sell more easily… including yours. And, in over 20 years of working with sales teams and business owners, I haven’t yet found one for which this couldn’t be done.
How Will You Make Your Value Tangible?
These three elements will completely transform your prospecting and sales presentations and set you head and shoulders above your competition. When you sit down and do the work, at first it seems too hard, but then ideas start to flow, and results start to show.
It is one of those activities in which you do the work up front and quickly see the results show up downstream, but it won’t happen if you don’t put the time and effort into thinking through all the steps and elements you need to include.
Once you do the work, though, the results are similar to wielding the proverbial magic wand… So what’s stopping you?