The answer is, you need to know as much about you customer as you do about your product. This is based upon the Law of Caring: “No one cares how much you know until they know how much you care.” (Sales Bible by Jeffrey Gitomer.) Certainly we’ve always heard “You have to know your product.” You can be the most knowledgeable person in your industry about your product or service. But that alone won’t get you the sale. Today, sales have changed, people buy from people that they like, they know and they trust.
This requires that you concentrate on your customer first and foremost. Who is he? What do they do? What do they like? How did they build the business? What is the background? What does the company need? What is the market strategy? How can you be a solution? Questions are the key. In any sales situation you should talking 25% of the time and listening 75% of the time. The answers to your questions are where you will begin to develop the trust.
In most sales situations the customer fears that you are going to sell them. That sets up a stress level in the customer. When we get stressed we start thinking of other things, like what to say next. Their concentration then is not on what you have to say. People not only like to talk about themselves but they like to talk about their business. It is what they know best. It’s what they are comfortable talking about, and it lowers the stress level. It also shows that you are interested in them.
It takes five to seven sales calls to close a sale. You have five to seven face times to have them like you, know you and trust you and it starts on your first call. You need to observe. The ability to observe is as important as the ability to sell and listen. You can learn a lot about a company by observing what’s in the lobby. Pictures, trophies, Little League sponsor, awards. The same holds true in a client’s office. Observing isn’t restricted to the physical facility. Do your home work (research) on the company and the client. This knowledge goes a long way in letting them know that care.
Bob Burg’s Golden Rule of Sales is:
“All things being equal, people will do business, and refer business to, those people they know, like and trust.”