The hardest thing for a salesperson to do, is to not sell their product or services. I know this firsthand from my past during my career. It is also one of the toughest things to teach a salesperson, do not sell the product or services. Let them sell themselves. When someone asks you do, do you answer “I am a Sales Representative?” When they ask what you sell, do you answer, “I sell the best products and services on the market today?”
The reason I ask is because over time, I have found that selling can be difficult, and if the customer has preconceived notions about what they need/want, it can be somewhat easy. The question I have is why is it so hard, and if it was an easy sale because the customer asked for something specific, did they really know wha they needed? The best salesperson I ever met was in the life insurance industry.
He referred to himself as a Regional Advisor and told me he helped clients by providing peace of mind and comfort in knowing family members would be taken care of in the event something fatal were to happen. When I commented that he sold insurance, his response was that he listens to his clients concerns, goals, and desired outcomes, then presents options that align to meet these needs. The client then makes the choice based on the options presented. This is an example of solution selling.
Don’t sell anything. Listen to what the client has to say, and ask a lot of questions to understand concerns, goals, and desired outcomes. Even if they told you what they want, ask the questions and let them know it is only to ensure you can provide the best solution and services for them. Once you have a clear understanding of the real needs and requirements, present options they can choose from. This could range from doing nothing, the basics, a full-blown/all feature suite, or something in between.
The message here is not to sell product or services, but to provide your clients with a level of comfort and peace of mind that the decision they made, is the best they could possibly make. Why? Because it was their choice – with you as a trusted advisor.