The Question is Why
My business is different and that means the method of selling is also different. Where do these ideas manifest from and why do people think that sales are different when dealing with consumers? Business to consumer selling is the same and it does not matter if you’re selling plumbing, furniture, health and wellness, cars, or televisions. People are people and will make decisions based on their reasons and you can help influence their decisions or you can sit on the sidelines and watch them work with other people.
Consumers buy for their own reasons. They have their own reasons to do whatever it is they want to do and want to buy. The solution will not matter when the reason to choose the solution does not match up to the consumers/customers reason. Your job as a professional is to discover why the customer wants to own and then provide a solution that fits their reason.
The easy part of sales is giving a proper solution to the customer that will take care of their issues, concerns or questions. If the solution itself is the most important or major factor with influencing a customer’s decision to move forward more customers would choose to buy immediately without reluctance, objections, or resistance. There would be no hesitation, description, or information necessary to give to the customer to help make their decision.
I’ve told this story hundreds of times. This time I want to break the story down into its smallest common denominator. A home owner has a water closet that is running and squealing loudly. The water closet started acting up 3 months prior to the call to take care of the problem. I arrived after the home owner had called 3 other plumbers to make the necessary repairs. He turned down 3 other plumbers prior to my visit. Price was not an issue.
Of course the water closet needs repaired due to being broken. However being broken is not enough to get it fixed. Remember it started acting up 3 months prior. The product not working correctly was not the most important factor in making the repair. Saving money on his water utility bill was unimportant too or else the water closet would have been fixed 3 months ago.
At this time the fixing the broken water closet and saving money is not a high priority. However taking care of those problems will become a benefit or by-product with the acceptance of the solution. The sales person that is concentrating on fixing the broken product and then pushing the fact that the customer will save money informs the customer that you do not care about their reasons to get it fixed. The customer knows and understands you are only in this for you and not him or her. You did not take the time to discover why the customer wants it fixed.
Ask yourself this question: why are you there. When you cannot discover a concrete reason why you are there ask the customer why you are there. Mr. Jones what made you call me today to take care of this for you? The answer may surprise you the vast majority of times. Of course you will have a few customers and that is a very low percentage that will say what you believe are your reasons to be there. The overwhelming majority will tell you freely why they want the product taken care of today when you ask.
In the case of the squealing water closet the question of what made you call me today made it crystal clear why he wanted it fixed, today. His daughter and her 3 children were set to arrive for a visit and stay a few weeks. The squealing water closet would wake the grandchildren up in the middle of the night.
What he did to take care of the problem in the past was; shut the bathroom door. When the noise became louder he shut door number 2. Finally when that was too loud he shut a 3rd door. Once again the broken water closet and saving money was not important.
For those that are not following; the solution will take care of the noise and at the same time fix the water closet and save the customer money on his utility water bill. The solution does not matter when it is not aligned to the customer’s reasons to make the right choice and move forward. The other 3 plumbers had the right solution but the wrong diagnostics concerning why to get it fixed.
What was missing? COMMUNICATION The solution did not address the noise. The noise was the customer’s main concern. Waking up the kids with the noise is the problem.
My solution: I have a quiet fill valve that will reduce the noise in the water closet. The benefits to the quiet fill valve are: the water closet will stop turning on and off, the squealing noise will no longer be present, and it will save you money on your utility bill. Best of all your grandchildren will be able to have a good night’s rest and sleep through the night. The solution aligned with his reason to get it fixed
Once again the solution is the same however the description, conveying ideas, painting a picture of ownership for the right reasons that influences the decision is very different. When you are blind to the customer’s reasons it is extremely difficult to help them make the right choice. Mistakes are made by believing you know what is best for the customer then expressing those ideas when they are not welcomed. The customer feels as if they are being pushed into something that is not wanted.
Note that your solution may be perfect and addresses the problem plus. When you do not address the customers want and reasons you will fail to help the customer the way that you want to help them. Decide today to start discovering the customer’s reasons to move forward and start enjoying immense success with helping your customer’s get what they want. You will soon experience an amazing number of customers that will start accepting what you say based on what you say.