Value Based Sales Part #2Rick Struzynski
Yes, I consider Value Based Sales (VBS) so critical to a company’s success that I’m writing about it yet again- and indeed, I plan on revisiting it occasionally. Assuming you are not selling a commodity (although I will argue value is still a function in that process as well), you are dealing with value and value propositions on every sale, whether you realize it or not. If you don’t realize it, you are leaving far too much to chance and more than likely, price is far too much of a factor. I suggest that VBS will not only improve your close rate, increase your margins and revenues, but also increase customer satisfaction!
Doesn’t that sound great? Make more money and increase customer satisfaction? You’re probably asking yourself: “how is that possible? My customers want the best offering out there for the lowest price possible!” While that may be true, nobody wants to just throw money away. Most customers will spend more if the value is there. Let’s dig deeper:
Value Based Sales can be broken down into 2 basic steps:
- Identify the true root cause of the customer’s pain. Then, using your company’s core strengths, craft the best solution possible.
- Recognizing that people make purchases and not companies, uncover any ‘hidden agendas’ and ensure that you’re addressing them as well.
When you take the time to find the root cause of the problem by asking more questions- and not taking anything at face value, you are certain to present a solution that delivers far more value than just answering an RFQ. In fact, I know of very successful businesses that won’t even waste time quoting an RFQ they didn’t know was coming. And just as importantly, the customer will feel you are really looking out for his/her’s best interests.
This second part is more difficult to accomplish as it requires a relationship to be developed on the basis of trust. However once this is accomplished, you fully become that trusted advisor every salesperson is shooting for.
Let me give you an example from my own experience. I had a customer who had a new application, one which we did have a solution for. However, I knew it was our weakest offering, and that this particular customer would not be satisfied with it. So what did I do? I sent MY customer to a competitor! Yes, that’s right! This customer purchased the new instruments from the company I recommended, yet he still came to us for the integration. This took place about 18 years ago, and this customer has never even put a project out to bid since then. He (amazingly, the man I worked with is in the same position at the company) simply contacts my old company and tells them what he needs.
Rick is the founder and CEO of Choose Growth – a sales management consulting firm dedicated to helping SMB’s achieve or exceed their growth expectations by increasing revenue, margins and reducing cost of sales – simultaneously. This contradicts most business books out there, but we have the data to support the success of our methods.
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