Sales is the main focus of any business. Whether we hate it or love it, selling has to happen for any business to progress.
In today’s competitive marketplace, being sales savvy will help in avoiding the struggle to acquire customers and investors to your business. As such, selling can be described as an art. The art of selling has evolved over the years. Selling techniques that were effective 5-10 years ago will almost not cut it in today’s sales ecosystem. Therefore, to survive in the modern times and maintain a competitive advantage when it comes to selling, there has been a need for a paradigm shift in the sales process. After all, selling has transitioned quite a lot thanks to the unending technological advancements and development. There has also been a general shift in customers’ attitudes with regards to their purchasing decisions. This article will highlight and explain what you need to understand in order to better sell to your clients and customers in the modern age.
It’s advisable for every entrepreneur not to fall behind using outdated selling methods. In recent times, it is not just enough to possess a product or a service in the market in order to sell. Neither is it enough to sell the products and services by explaining their uniqueness using what is referred to as the Unique Selling Propositions(USPs) because of how the products/services are so similar and familiar to the competition. There is now a need to identify what the customer sees as value and then present the product or service from that angle. It also calls to getting the key meaning of what selling really is, which should be providing solutions to the customers’ problems.
Let us highlight what we need to understand regarding the difference between selling tactics of yester years and of the modern times, in order to better our selling skills today.
- Be Your First Customer
In the past years, salespeople have been stereotyped to often be pitching products or services that they themselves do not really believe in. They are known to just sell to increase their sales but not necessarily because they believe in the value of the products and services they are marketing for. For example, you could get a banker selling credit cards to customers while he or she does not own one or a certain mobile telecom salesperson selling mobile numbers for a competitor network. Another example is finding a car seller who doesn’t know how to start or move the car he or she is selling. In today’s market, this approach of selling does not work.
As an entrepreneur or a sales professional of recent times, you need to first believe in the product /service that you are selling in order to be able to sell. It calls for one to have a grounded conviction that the product or service one is selling will solve a problem for the customers. With this conviction, one is able to get the passion, confidence and insight necessary to sell to others as you promise the results.
- Selling Taken as Helping
Genuine selling is founded on this. The customers who will purchase your products or request your services as a salesperson are out there waiting for you to take to them your products or services. “…customers already exist out there but it’s the responsibility of the salesperson to go to them and inform them about his/her product or service and how this product or service can help meet their demands.” (Kendrick Shope; CEO, Authentic Selling). For example, a salesperson selling expensive mobile phones but he is able to show you how you will be able to scan, do word, pdf and excel documents, emails, do desk-top publishing, take very high resolution pictures, store data, send surveys and many more with just that one phone….if he can bring out your pain around these features, the “help” the phone brings will outweigh any cost considerations.
- New and Technological Touch Points
It is important to note that as we sell our products and services to customers, we are not only getting money from these customers but also their time. Due to this fact, a salesperson of the modern times requires respect for the time a prospective customer gives during their interaction. “Technology advances have allowed for new touch points that demonstrate respect for a prospective customer’s time.” ( Agnes Jozwrak: Marketing Director, ClickMarketing). This also means that digital touch points have made it easier for marketers and sellers creating convenience and overall better impression to potential customers. For example, a sales person may use a Webinar to make his or her presentation allowing prospective clients to conveniently watch it from their home compared to the former times where these clients needed to physically avail themselves to an office or market place. Besides, people nowadays also prefer having control of their purchasing journey on their phones e.g. few people still go to queue for renewal of driving licenses, or book airline tickets. People want to give customer opinions anonymously and conveniently on their phones
- Demographic Uniqueness and Need for Individualized Approach
In today’s interconnected world, it is important to understand the uniqueness of target customers to avoid a consolidated one-size sales approach that is meant to fit in all. Different people have different choices and want control as much as possible in their purchasing decisions. They engage in different ways at different times in a sales environment and as a sales person the better one understands them the easier it will be to come up with individualized communication messages and platforms. This awareness has helped the modern times sellers in recognizing how to specifically individualize their selling approach so as to ensure they capture all their different prospective and potential customers. Also with tech advances like the emergence of The Big Data Analysis as a competitive edge , some organizations like insurance companies can now offer tailor made products such as “on-demand-insurance-products” for their customers because they are able to understand their needs better.
- Content Marketing Approach
Content marketing is possibly one of the excellent examples of digital touch points of selling that respects a prospect’s time while providing value to the selling process. It includes blog posts, infographics and case studies among others. In today’s technological era, people want to research on Google and social media about items and services before they make a purchase. Therefore good quality content marketing materials can aid an entrepreneur in providing informative and helpful information that lessen the burden of purchasing decisions. This approach was not available in the past. Today, the higher in value the content a person provides, the more trusted his/her brand will appear and the more likely he or she is to convince potential clients and close a sale.
In conclusion, selling should not be an overwhelming challenge. It only requires consistent and frequent fine-tuning and updating according to the changing times. To capture more clients and close sales as well as get your messages better positioned across the investors, one needs to embrace the modern time approaches of selling since the older ones no longer work well.
For more information and tips, visit
https://www.myvarsityglobal.com/courses/intermediary-selling-skills/ and learn all you can about sales today!