When you work in sales, it’s never enough to simply know the features and benefits of what you’re selling. You can be ready to address any questions your prospect might have and you might have a polished pitch ready to go, but to achieve the most success, you must be able to identify the needs of each potential customer.
According to Kevin Gardner, a business consultant for InnovateBTS, a needs-based salesperson is the gateway between brands and consumers. He says it’s critical to understand how sales are changing from both a professional and consumer’s standpoint. Here, we share Gardner’s three tips for becoming a needs-based salesperson.
1. Know that it’s okay to go off-script. Gardner says that one of the reasons salespeople are so valuable is that they can provide a personalized touch to the marketing process. While it’s good to have a general pitch in mind when presenting a product, a needs-based approach to marketing encourages you to go off-script. Don’t be afraid to ask questions that encourage thoughtful responses from your clients instead of questions that allow them to respond with a simple yes or no. By asking the right questions, you open the door to a conversation, which creates a connection and leads to a greater chance of conversion. Show your own interest in the client’s needs and demonstrate how your product can offer a solution.
2. Focus on education instead of information. Customers can get a basic rundown of a product’s core features anywhere. Don’t just give a generic spiel as this won’t win over a client. Instead, Gardner recommends taking a needs-based approach, which focuses on a client’s individual likes, dislikes and specific challenges. This helps them take a new perspective of their issue through the lens of your product. Remember not to simply talk about what your business can do for a customer – show them why it matters.
3. Embrace digital media. Don’t show up to a meeting with only business cards and printed handouts. Instead, aim to present facts and figures authentically to potential clients. If you can combine your brand’s social media and digital assets in your presentation, you can demonstrate a sense of brand awareness and continuity that shows your clients you have something valuable to offer. The goal is to leave a lasting impression in the customer’s mind and encourage them to explore further.
By tapping into your customer’s needs, you can become an invaluable asset to your team and organization. Although it may appear difficult to compete with customers who want to buy online, when it comes to closing a deal, statistics prove otherwise. An app or website only lists the facts, while a salesperson can adjust his or her approach for each individual client. People want to work with other people, especially when they are making a large purchase. Consider the points above to ensure you’re a needs-based salesperson for your clients.
Source: Kevin Gardner works as a business consultant for InnovateBTS where he helps companies integrate technology to improve performance. He shares his knowledge and expertise not only with his clients but with his fellow bloggers and readers.