Nothing happens in a business until something sells something.
Just think about how many resources of a company are devoted to customer acquisition.
The US Small Business Administration recommends that businesses spend 7-8% of gross revenue on sales.
I’ve started shortly after I graduated high school.
Now I’m at a point in my life where I’ve spent more of my life selling than not selling.
When we sell, we are in the business of persuasion.
We are sharing the good news about how our product or services can either improve people’s lives or solve people’s problems.
When we sell, we are seeking to make a difference.
Sure, we want to make money when we sell.
However, to be truly effective in persuading people to buy from us, we must believe in what we’re selling.
No matter what you are selling, you have some competitor that is selling something similar to what you’re selling.
Part of the job of selling is to convince our potential customer on why they should buy from us.
We want to share with people why they should buy from us instead of buy from Joe Schmoe down the street.
What I’ve learned in my twenty-five plus years in selling is that people become set in their ways.
When people get comfortable, they tend to want to stay in that comfort zone.
When we sell to people, we are bringing a level of disruption to their lives.
People make changes when they buy from us.
They are trading something they are comfortable with something untested, something new, something that could fail.
When people buy from us, they are placing trust in us that we will be good for our word.
We have to earn people’s trust before they buy from us.
Ultimately, we must build some sort of relationship with that customer for them to believe that we are worthy of their trust.
What does it take to build a relationship with a potential customer?
It takes time, It takes effort, and it takes caring.
We must care for the people to whom we are selling.
We must have their best interests at heart when we propose our wares will benefit them.
Why do people buy?
According to Jim Edwards, a prominent copywriter, people buy for the following ten reasons.
- To Make Money
- To Save Money
- To Save Time
- To Avoid Effort
- To Escape Pain (Physical / Mental)
- To Get More Comfort
- To Achieve Greater Cleanliness / Hygiene
- To Attain Fuller Health
- To Gain Praise / Feel More Loved
- To Be Popular / Increase Social Status shares
If we were to boil these ten reasons down to just two reasons, we would come up with the following:
- People buy to experience pleasure.
- People buy to avoid pain.
Now let’s simplify these two reasons into one reason why people buy.
People buy because they want to change the way they feel.
Here are a few reasons why people don’t buy:
- Because I went to a fancy-schmancy college.
- Because I was the tenth runner up to being valedictorian of my high school.
- Because I have seventeen certifications.
- Because I love what I do.
While some of these reasons may increase the credibility of me, my company and my products and services, each of these reasons fail because they are focused on the wrong person.
They are focused on me.
Which reminds me of a word.
When I talk about me, I am changing the focus of the sales conversation.
I am focusing on me.
I am the last person that I should focus on when selling.
My focus should be on the people to whom I am selling.
Those people spend the money on what I am selling.
We want to talk about the other person.
We want to find out what is important to them.
We want to listen to them more than we talk.
Remember that old saying about mouths and ears?
We’re given twice as many ears as mouths.
Let’s use our ears twice as much as our mouths.
I can’t tell you how many times I have gotten so caught up in excitement about why I bought something that I try to convince someone else that they should adopt my reasons for buying.
Oh yes, I bought this car because it’s fast.
What if I’m talking to a person that doesn’t care about a fast car?
What if that person wants a safe car?
What sense does it do me to talk about the acceleration of the care from 0-60 in less than four seconds?
That kind of talk will most likely scare a safe car person senseless.
In their minds going that fast so quickly is a recipe for a car accident.
Let me take these examples and share with you two keys you can use this information to become a better salesperson.
Key #1 – Selling is serving others
Remember that you, as a salesperson, are in the business of improving people’s lives.
Selling is a noble profession.
Just think of the thrill of excitement you get when you close a sales deal.
Few things in life give me the high of closing a sales deal.
We get that endorphin rush because we are making a difference in the lives of people we sell to and consequently, we are rewarded for improving those lives.
Be proud to sell what you are selling.
Key #2 – Follow the Golden Rule when you sell to others.
Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
Remember that the other person is the most important person in the sales conversation.
They are placing their trust in us.
Think first about what they want and need.
Think about the pleasure they are looking to enjoy.
Think about the pain they are looking to avoid.
Think about the feeling they want to acquire by buying from you.
Use these two keys, and you will become better at sales.
By the way, if you’re looking to improve your sales get my Five-Step Marketing Plan here. You’ll get a step by step guide to increasing your sales by focusing on building relationships.