We all want to better understand our customers’ pain points to provide what they need to remedy their pain. Roderick Jefferson, sales enablement practitioner and author, shared valuable insights for diagnosing your customers’ problems—and helping them make the best decision to help themselves and their company, in this months episode of In Pursuit of Growth with Alice Heiman.
Focus on the Experience
More often than not, poor sales performance comes from lack of training or direction from leadership. As a sales leader, you want to make sure your team is focusing on the right messaging, and getting their prospect’s attention quickly. That starts by knowing exactly how you can help them: do your research and make the conversation personal.
The most impactful question to ask your potential customer is,
“If you move forward with this, what will this mean to you individually?”
Sales reps should show they truly know the industry or company and what each decision maker may be thinking about their problems. Look at what your sales process is, and map that against what your buyer is trying to do. Are there any gaps? Most likely there are, and you're going to need to pivot or change what you're doing because you have to fit the way the buyer is trying to buy.
Still today, too many sales teams focus on selling, products, platforms or solutions. But the focus should be on selling the experience that your clients can only get by working with you and your company. So as a sales leader, you have to make sure your team is really equipped to do that. And no, that doesn’t mean going over the history of your company or product features. It means training on the customer, what a day in their life might be like, and how what you sell can improve that.
Make Sure Your Sales and Marketing Teams Work Together
It’s critical to have sales and marketing departments communicating and working with one another. Otherwise, it's difficult to serve the customer well. These departments should support each other—sales teams should have presentations, messaging, collateral, videos, that the marketing department works with them to create. But if the marketing department doesn’t have a crystal clear idea of who the sales team is speaking to, and what pain points the message needs to address, it doesn’t work. If your sales teams are making their own materials, there’s a disconnect internally within your company that needs to be addressed.
The Cost of Inaction
Our customers are bombarded with sales pitches every day. They’re busy. They’re overwhelmed. They might have decision-paralysis. But you have to ask them, “What is the cost of doing nothing right now?”
If we can coach our salespeople to help the buyers move from no decision to something, even if it's not your product or service, we are doing them a much better service and they see us as a trusted advisor. Even if they don't buy from us this time, then in the future, they will come back to us or they would be happy to refer us.
Your role in sales is to help the buyers make the best decision for their company, which sometimes doesn't include you. However, make it easy for them, and they’ll remember the experience forever.
Alice covered the above ideas and much more with Roderick in this episode of In Pursuit of Growth. Be sure to connect with Roderick on LinkedIn and let him know you heard about him from the In Pursuit of Growth podcast, so he can send you a special gift.