There are two things businesses can focus on when selling: features and outcomes. Often companies spend way too much time rattling off all the perks of a product or service and gushing about their own business ("We have the best technical expertise") and less time focusing on the prospect and the solution. This can lead to lost customers and sales.
Instead, focus on the end result by asking questions like, "If you could solve your top three challenges, what would that mean for your company in terms of increased revenues?"
Before you can start selling outcomes, you need to understand how to identify which result to sell in any scenario. Here are three tips to get you started:
1. Learn about your prospect's challenges. Every qualified prospect has challenges you can solve, but you need to understand exactly what those challenges are.
Once you've learned what your prospect's challenges are, you need to understand how important a solution is to your prospect. Remember all businesses have a lot of challenges, so they must prioritize them. If the challenges your outcome would solve aren't at the top of your prospect's list of priorities, then it's time to move on.
2. Understand and clarify your prospect's goals. After you have identified your prospect's challenges, you need to help him become clear about his goals. What is the prospect really looking to accomplish over the next year or two? What challenges will absolutely have to be solved in order to achieve that? This is where you want to start talking dollars and cents, this is where you build your value.
When you get prospects to articulate the revenues or profits they are losing due to their current business strategy, the massive value for you are selling becomes clear.
3. Create clear objectives: Now that you know what your prospect should be accomplishing, it's time to create tangible objectives for your potential relationship. This means targeting particular metrics, like level of revenue increase, decrease in costs and new customer visits. By creating clear objectives, developing a budget for a solution with a prospect is painless and isn't about the price.
Marc Wayshak is the bestselling author of two books on sales and leadership, Game Plan Selling and Breaking All Barriers. As a sales strategist, Marc created the Game Plan Selling System to revolutionize the way salespeople, entrepreneurs and companies approach selling. Marc’s sales strategy is based upon his experiences as an All-American athlete, Ivy League graduate, startup entrepreneur and years of research, training and selling. He holds an MBA from the University of Oxford and a BA from Harvard University. Get his free eBook on 25 Tips to Crush Your Sales Goal at GamePlanSelling.com. You can call him at (617) 203 – 2171 or email him at Info@MarcWayshak.com. (Twitter: @MarcWayshak)