One thing I have realized in books I buy at amazon is that every author will write “best-selling author” on the book cover and I keep wondering why I don’t see “best writing author”? Well, the answer is simple, every entrepreneur becomes successful when his art pays the bill and place meal on the table. This is impossible without selling. Whatever you are offering; no matter how superb and qualitative it is; if you are not selling it means you are not in business. Hence, it will be convenient for me to say every entrepreneur is a sales person.
Habit is described as a usual way of behaving; what one does in a regular and repeated way. If selling is important to the success of any business, it is important to develop habit that will deliver result all of the time. Everything I have purchased in the recent times is the things that I found useful for myself. And I am sure you also buy things for the sake of the benefits you will derive from it. Any service that wouldn’t benefit you will not make you drop a penny from your bank account; no matter how superb such service is; except you are a victim of scammers.
A friend of mine who runs a phone booth and a cyber café business in a village dominated by people who don’t know what a smartphone is; relocated to an area dominated by students of tertiary institution. He secured a shop inside the school minimart and continued his phone booth and cyber café business. Sales dropped and losses were kissing my friend real hard. He pasted posters, designed leaflets, offer discount, run ads and campaigns; all of these brought in sales for that very period but couldn’t sustain sales.
Do you have an idea of what went wrong with a booming business in the village that suddenly becomes a nightmare in the city? It is very simple; my friend is an entrepreneur with poor selling habit. Every successful seller will not just go ahead to replicate ideas; they have the habit of “ask and listen before they tell and sell”. This was the simple efforts I put in place for my friend’s cyber café business to boom again.
If you will succeed in selling your offerings, you must remember that you have two ears and one mouth – and you should use them in that ratio. Many entrepreneurs love to throw the long list of their services or products benefit to the face of the customer in order to inform and convince them; you must beware of doing this because it usually yield a very low result. And it is a tactic that a pushy sales person will use.
No, you will have to take a different approach. You will ask questions and establish the customers want and needs first, and mention only the benefits that are relevant to him or her. Okay, think about it this way; all of your customers are carrying a sticker on their fore head and the only question they keep asking is; “what will this product or service do for me”? The emphasis is always on the “ME”. Everyone wants to be treated as an individual, not just another customer. Make assumption about their similarity to other customers and you will almost certainly offend them.
The way to do this is to always prepare and establish the best open-ended questions that would make your prospective client do the talking why you listen and record where practicable. Try to understand their point of view, their problems, concerns or issues, and opportunities. When you see that they are lost or run out of idea, you can make suggestions that are relevant to what you offer, take note of their gesture and establish their reaction towards such suggestion.
I was discussing with a client who is into buying and selling of farm produce; he told me he doesn’t need any online presence because those he buys for are illiterate who doesn’t use smart phone. He said anyone with sophisticated life would sell at higher rate than his regular customers. I quickly proposed our service that can help him to gain the attention of the media without sponsoring the media to talk about it. Instead of our IT/Digital services, I gave him our Public Relation services.
Understanding the needs of your customers and selling the exact benefit to them works like magic. If you really want to achieve the goal of your marketing, you must ask and listen before you tell and sell.
I want to see you winning and really happy. I’m available to help you grow your brand.
Your PR Specialist.