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Insight In Selling: Power To Change

Insight in selling is a fascinating and powerful way of effecting change.

Have you ever metaphorically held your prospect's hand, walked them along the education pathway, gotten them close to the sale of adopting your product or service, only to have a competitor swoop in at the last minute and take the order away?

Or have you done this to someone else?

I've been on both sides of the equation. Often accidentally. For years I wondered what the problem was. Especially on the warm-up side, what the heck went wrong?

Why did that prospective customer drop me so quickly? After all the help I'd provided...

insight lit light bulb customer delight emotional buy-in

Image by Arek Socha from Pixabay

The Power of Insight In Selling

Two things are going on here:

First, there's a covert contract. Covert means hidden, and we all know a contract is an agreement. So what's the hidden agreement in warm-up sequences?

"I'll help you," says the salesperson. "Let me educate you about this. Here's the definition of the problem. You probably hadn't seen it clearly defined before we got here, had you. And here's our solution. See that? See all those bells and whistles? Aren't they great? You should buy our solution."

So where's the covert contract? I'll show you what's going on here, and you'll repay me by buying our solution.

This is what the salesperson understands...but the prospect? That's another story.

Truth is, that prospect owes you nothing.

You showed up, and you gave.

Cool.

That doesn't entitle you to a sale.

Second thing going on...it turns out that, emotionally speaking, warm-up education series are pretty weak.

I wish they weren't. But that's how this particular cookie has crumbled over the years.

So in these warm-up situations, you've got a covert contract going on in which the salesperson believes since they've been nice and shared with and educated the prospect, they deserve that order when the time comes. And the prospect? Well, they're simply not that into you.

Naturally, they're eager to learn. Aren't we all.

But that counts for nothing when it's time for the money decision to be made.

And let's keep in mind that, mostly, all you've done is clear up the nature of the problem a little for them plus lather on the features and benefits of your own solution.

And this is what allows Captain Insight of Vendor Number Two swoop in and take the sale away.

You never had the sale in the first place.

The Question of Insight In Selling

This leads to the question you should be asking:

What IS insight?

This is the flash of recognition, the instant emotional buy-in, the "OMG I HAVE TO HAVE IT" moment striking that prospect so thoroughly that their perspective on the subject matter is changed forever. And they remember exactly who gave them that insight. This is instant and emotional.

Insight is an incredibly valuable tool you can make mechanical use of. Conceptually it comes out of The Challenger Sale. I've been using the Challenger approach for the past couple years—after resisting it for a long time because of the name. I thought it was confrontational. But it turns out many of the consultative techniques fit in very well with the Challenger approach.

The insight has to matter to that prospect.

You've heard me say, "If they say it, it's true; if you say it, you have to defend it." That applies here. So you care about the 67 doohickeys and whistles that make up the features of your product or service. Your prospect does not. That's not insight.

Keep looking.

They have to care about it.

That's your first clue.

>> Want help discovering insights you can use in your sales process? Book a time to talk with Jason by clicking here. <<

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No Obligation To Sell

Do you have no obligation to sell...or must you try to make a sale with every prospect who comes along?

This event occurred two years ago. Facebook Memories brought it back to my attention. I find it amusing.

I guess you could see it as alarming, too, but that's not the way I choose to view it.

A young person from Italy messaged my sales training page, Sales On Fire, demanding to know the price.

When I did not instantly respond, he escalated to swearing.

I do not put up with abuse (sales hint: how they treat you now is how they will treat you later), so messaged that I would not be working with him, and blocked him.

Google searches are easy to do and our young friend quickly looked up my SOF business phone number. I had it for a decade. I know because shortly thereafter I began to receive calls from a number I (also using google) traced back to Italy.

No doubt he wanted to give me a piece of his mind 😉 Good for him and his persistence. He will probably make something of himself.

no sale, zero obligation to sell, no obligation to sell, sales, salesperson, cash register, sales machine

Image by Rose McAvoy from Pixabay

 

As The Seller, You Have No Obligation To Sell

But here's the fact about being the seller:

** Until we have said Yes to the deal and accepted the money, we can say No.

Right up to that moment. **

We have no obligation to sell. We are under zero obligation to give information, do free consultations, provide our pricing or anything else.

Blocked and gone on that platform, too.

We have no idea what this person wants with information from us. Are they doing a price survey for positioning their own offer? Are they asking about price because they don't know what else to ask about or value? Another of a myriad of reasons, not all of which are friendly?

It is part of the role you play as a seller to qualify your prospects. Some you will want to turn away.

Just a reminder of the power you have as a seller, prompted by this funny memory. No one can make you do anything you don't want to do in sales. You're the one in control of the process. Not everyone should be a customer.

>> Jason Kanigan is a business strategist who knows that people asking right up front, "So, what's your price?" probably aren't interested in working with you. To book a session with Jason and discuss your situation, click here (and yes, you're being qualified.) <<

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The Danger of the Two Sales

The Danger of the Two Sales is a straightforward but not well-known marketing and sales problem that kills many new businesses.

Here's what happens to produce it:

Someone has a brainwave and makes a new product or service.

You see this all the time in the Software-as-a-Service world...but you'll also see it in products, such as a condiment.

Then the creator goes out and tries to sell the thing, and discovers nobody wants it.

"Why don't they understand how great this is?" they shout. After all, it's clear as day to them why people need whatever it is.

But the public, the target market, other people... everyone else just doesn't get it.

The now-frustrated creator gives up.

the danger of the two sales, unable to sell, positioning problem, marketing problem

Image by Steve Buissinne from Pixabay

Understanding What Causes The Danger Of The Two Sales

What happened here?

The new business owner, fired up with the enthusiasm for their innovative idea, has dangerously bypassed the first problem in sales and marketing...

...identifying a problem people admit they'll pay to have solved.

This is the first of The Two Sales. You must make this first sale, and it is best if that sale is implicitly understood by your prospective customer before you begin talking to them.

In other words, the first sale is that your prospect admits there is a serious problem to be solved: one that they will pay money to fix.

If you haven't achieved this, you run a great risk of having your "solution" sound unnecessary or, even worse, nonsense. You'll ever make a sale in this situation.

The second of The Two Sales is that YOU are the best provider of solutions for this problem.

Can you see how if you blindly try to rush past the first of The Two Sales, that your target market agrees there's an issue here worth solving in the first place, your prospect will blink at you in confusion when you try to show off "your baby"?

Making Use Of The Two Sales

You might be astonished how often this situation comes up. If you keep the Danger of the Two Sales in mind as you begin, though, you'll be able to make use of it.

As a for-instance, I pre-qualify prospective clients for people who already believe that a metrics-based approach is good. For them to already be demonstrating they value numbers because they're collecting their own data—and aren't afraid of math.

So many newbie business owners are afraid of a little math.

When I do talk to someone about our services, I know they're already on board with doing some math...that they speak the language of marketing and operations results. I do not have to risk falling into the situation of trying to sell someone who just isn't into numbers and probably never will be. What a frustrating experience that would be!

Do you see how this directs your marketing?

Your marketing is best deployed in filtering in those people who already believe as you do. Then you can talk to those who qualify—those you've made The First Sale to—further about the details of your amazing solution.

Of course there are situations where a new problem and a new solution are very real. But you'll still have to deal with The Two Sales: before you'll ever make a sale you'll have to educate and convince someone, or get them to agree, that there is a serious problem in this area. Then you can move on to you being the best solution provider.

Many, many businesses have died an early death because their founders did not understand The Danger of the Two Sales. I encourage you to not be one of those founders.

>> Jason Kanigan is a business strategist and conversion expert. To book a session to speak with Jason, click here. <<