Build a Successful Business: Beat the Crap out of Your Competitors without Competing on Price

20131107-linda-Build a Successful Business (2)You have a great product or service, and you know there’s a good market for it but the problem is there are at least a dozen companies selling something similar. In most cases, business owners would adopt a reach out-discount-close the deal method, but the competitors are doing that, too. So what do you do then? What does it take to get the customer and build a successful business?

Seek out the customers, NOT to sell, but to get their trust first. Don’t go for the sale without establishing trust. It’s easier said than done.

First, let me get one thing clear: Building customer trust is not limited to offering money-back or replacement guarantees. You can’t build a successful business if that’s the only way you know how to gain their trust.

People buy something to solve a problem, or fulfill their wants or needs. Find out what these are and use it to your advantage.

How can a sales rep get all that information?

Train your sales team to explain the selling process to customers BEFORE they start to talk people into buying. This shows the customers that they’re interested in helping, not just in making a sale.

“Thanks for visiting/calling (name of your shop). Today, I will help you

  1. Pinpoint the exact problem you’re trying to solve
  2. Give you different options to solve that problem
  3. Help you choose which option is right for you and be confident with that decision”

This may look like a long opening line for the average sales representative, but let’s dissect this to see what’s really happening here.

“Pinpoint the exact problem”- Sometimes, the customer thinks they know what the problem is, when it turns out they don’t. Saying this prompts the customer to open up and explain why they’re making a purchase.

 “Give your different options”– This tells the customer that the rep isn’t just going to push him into buying the most expensive item.

“Help you choose which option is right”- It shows that the rep is putting the customer’s needs first. It’s better for them, because they don’t have to buy a product and return it days later because it didn’t work.

“..be confident with that decision”- How exactly can you help customers be confident with their purchase? Traditionally, you can show them the benefits and features of your product. However, that won’t help you much, because other brands are doing that, as well.

Here’s what you can do:

Give customers third-party data showing how effective the product or service is, it could be surveys, market research, or a success story. A success story of a previous buyer who have bought, and it solved the exact problem the customer has is more likely to convince the buyer, compared to a list of product benefits with no social proof.

Alternatively, if appropriate, the sales person can show the product’s price and compare it with other brands. Other sales people may think this can ruin their pitch; but it’s not really the case. Show the price, then compare it to brand X, Y and Z, and then compare the benefits of those products to what your product can offer.

For example,

“You can purchase product X and save $70, or choose product Z and save $100,” but product X/Y can’t give you these features. Then SHOW customers what those products CAN’T do but yours can.

Getting the customer’s trust is essential to building a successful business. For that, you’ll need to train your sales team to master the skills listed here.

 

© 2013 Incedo Group, LLC

1 Comment

  • Jan Day Posted November 29, 2013 9:32 pm

    In the article “The Economics of Customer Retention” by Brian Koma writes: Winning new customers while losing a significant share of existing customers is like filling a bathtub with the drain open. Here is an example that shows the difference between a 74% customer retention rate and a 90% customer retention rate: At a 74% customer retention rate, a $30 million business will lose $7.8 million in revenue year-over-year and will need to sell almost $17 million in new business to reach $40 million in sales. At a 90% customer retention rate, a business will reduce its year-over-year revenue loss to $3 million and will only need to sell an additional $12 million to reach $40 million in sales. Loyal customers can make a dramatic difference in an organization’s overall financial health and dramatically reduce the cost of growth, even in a challenging economy. Compound your retention rate over the years and you have a dramatic impact on your corporation’s profits.

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