There is a very good reason that new and start up businesses struggle to shift their goods and services. In this blog I am going to outline the main areas from which you will deal your customer base and your approach to attracting them.
1 Two Types of Sales Person
There are essentially two types of seller. The hard sell and the soft sell. The main difference is that the hard seller looks for clients whereas the soft seller lets the clients find them. The hard sell consists of roughly 5% of the sales population. They are usually aggressive very hard working, full of hormones like testosterone and adrenaline. They are more likely to be male and do everything to extreme. They will take enormous risks and often burn out before 45. These guys are to be found on the trading floors of stock exchanges and their focus is solely money.
The soft seller represents 95% of the sales population. They are interested in their product and spend their time creating an environment where customers want to buy. They will probably have a better work life balance and can continue to sell into their sixties. The customer will approach them and all their leads are warm. Which of these two do you think better represents you?
2 Two Types of Income
There are two types of income, active and passive. Active income involves providing a service or product in exchange for time. The income is limited as there is no way we have more than 24 hours in a day. This suits the products of global education systems as it trains individuals to be employees or practitioners of the great professions medicine , law etc
Passive income is the domain of the entrepreneur and suits online businesses well. You are paid even when you are asleep. Renting property , selling subscription services are good examples of this . Which of these would you prefer to build your career round active or passive income?
3 Two aspects customers are looking for
The two aspects are needs and wants. A need revolves around the clients legal requirements. No-one wants car insurance or accountancy advice. They need it. When a client goes to the dentist they need a filling. What they want is bright shiny teeth. Wants are based on emotion and are moire likely to generate the impulsive purchase. . Poverty is no security against emotional wants. Many will buy more unnecessary items when struggling because it makes them feel better. The only emotion associated with needs is fear. To avoid suffering rather than to feel good. Do you feel more inclined to provide a need or a want?
4 The two types of offer
There are only two things you can sell, a service or a product. Products are sold on the price , quality and reliability of items . Services are sold on the quality of people. Are you a people person or do you like dealing with inanimate objects where you your customer is not your focus?
5 Two types of interaction with your customer.
Customers are either looking for you to solve their problems or add value. Problem solving is reactive and they will only come to you when they are in some sort of trouble. A lawyer solves problems. Adding value is proactive and improves someones life. A tour operator would be classed as a value adder. Are you reactive or proactive ? Do you ideally like solving peoples problems or adding something extra into peoples lives?
6 Two elements of a sale
The first are the features of your sale. This is all about you and your business . The second is the benefits of the sale. This is all about the customer and how what you offer will benefit them. I think you would agree that focusing on benefits is more likely to generate a better return. Do you focus on the product or how the product will benefit the customer?
When you have analysed these you are well on your way to engaging with your customer. One word of warning, to finish. Never try to do both in each section at once. For example you cannot provide a need and a want at the same time.
Peter Bull ( Author of the Get InTouch Series)