Yes, it’s true – clients buy because they want or need what it is you have to sell. An unfortunately large part of the time this is not down to the sales person!
A good friend of mine, lets call him John, asked me if I had in fact finished off the point I was trying to make on a previous post (Theres only two reasons they don’t buy) He felt I’d left it all a bit up in the air. Interestingly, a number of sales people I spoke to about it, didn’t share that opinion, and I wondered if that was a curiously sales perspective. My friend John you see, isn’t a sales person. While hugely clever, and a very important person indeed*, John is… well, there’s no other way to put this… a creative type!
Anyway, back to the point. I think sales people will understand the view I have. Most of us at some time or other, have wondered when we were going to get found out. Wondered at the lucky set of circumstances that have conspired to put us in the positions we find ourselves in, at whatever stage we are at in our careers. We’ll certainly be able to recall those successful sales we have walked away from thinking ‘How on Earth did I manage to close that?!’
I’m not talking about luck, more when we’ve intuitively understood we managed to get a deal, even when we know in our heart of hearts that we have messed up. Not convinced? OK, what about the time you bought from a sales person despite them?
That guy behind the till at the corner shop that gives you the creeps? The ubiquitous ‘young person’ in the ‘music store’ (I understand these still exist in bigger cities) that manages to imply your taste in music or DVD’s is terminally uncool, and manages to do so while also exhibiting supreme indifference. (Now that’s a talent!) Still not with me? How about bigger ticket items, ever bought a car? or a holiday?
How much did the sales person have to do with your final decision? For sure, you’ll not buy from someone who REALLY upsets you. And in the case of a close call, or difficult decision, that ‘nice man from the first place we went to’ might tip the balance. But generally if you really need that thing, whatever it is, you’ll buy it. Despite the hoops the company you are buying from makes you jump through. Whether that’s awkward store lay outs, disinterested sales people, or even poorly designed websites.
John, if your still reading, I’m back to my point from the last post. BUYERS ONLY BUY WHEN BUYERS BELIEVE. When they believe that the thing they are buying is going to improve their life in some way, big or small. Or they believe that what they are buying is essential. Especially in the case of the distress purchase, like insurance.
In other words, if the client isn’t convinced that what you are selling is going to ‘work’ for them, they aren’t buying. And its important to understand that this is the case.
Unless you are completely without redeeming features as a sales person, you’ll always sell to those people who understand, due to their own powers of discernment, that they need the thing that you are selling. Most of these guys aren’t stupid you know, and hopefully you’ve managed to get yourself a job where you are selling a decent product for a company with a decent reputation.
If this is not the case, and they don’t see how it will work, or can’t see how it will work, that’s when we professional sellers really earn our commissions. Selling is about altering beliefs, and adjusting attitudes. It’s about convincing those people who are unconvinced in the first place that you have something that will really make a difference. Anything else is ‘order taking’. Which is nice work, if you can get it.
So sometimes the best you can do is convince the buyer that you believe! Enthusiasm is 95% of the job!
Many a sale has been made on the strength of the sales persons enthusiasm for their product. After all, even if the client isn’t convinced, they can be convinced that you are convinced! If you see what I mean…
John? John? Are you still there?
*John is a very important man, as he is a very important man to me. And a very good friend