Excerpt taken from my book ‘Live it Love it Sell it’
Before we think more about what sales is all about, let’s step into the world of the buyer for a moment.
What is it like to buy from you?
Why would I want to buy from you?
What do you give me as a solution?
I’ll talk about this too in the other parts of the book, especially when I come to talk about the concept of your ‘ideal client’. For now, though, let’s address this from where this sales road trip all begins. I want to really conquer mindset. We have to be fit to travel, and if our mindset is playing any tricks on us whatsoever, we cannot move forward in the way we need to and sell in a human way.
So how do you possibly think like a buyer when you are selling? That takes a whole lot of effort. There is so much to think about and so much to worry about. And what if they don’t like me? What if they think I’m not good enough? What if they think I’m too expensive? Oh my goodness, this is so stressful!
One thing I find really interesting is how we seem to forget that we are also buyers! We probably buy almost daily, if not with money, we will buy suggestions from friends, family and especially children!
What happens when we buy?
There really are many reasons why people buy, and I will help you to get to the bottom of your ideal client’s specific ‘why’ later on in the book. For now, we are looking to switch our mindset from panicking about selling and feeling fear to understanding the role of the buyer and taking control. We totally understand how buyers think – we are buyers ourselves!
The list below shows some of the reasons why people will buy.
When you look at the list it’s likely you’ll spot reasons you’ve bought products and services in the past. It’s also likely you’ll see ones that are the reasons why people will buy from you.
- Save money
- Achieve goals
- Personal gain
- Save time
- Because it’s new
- Make something easier
- A thank you
So, all this is a reminder that we know about buying already. It’s not a dark art. Keep it simple. You have a good idea why your client will buy, and you know how you buy, so start using those skills. What’s interesting is that we each have a pattern we follow every time we make a purchase. Yes, it does depend on what you are buying, but the thought processes will tend to be more or less the same for you whether you’re buying a tin of baked beans or a new car.
Ask yourself these questions:
What is the most important thing you consider when you make a purchase?
What key thing happens for you to feel comfortable when you buy?
How do you justify a purchase?
In most cases one key word will feature in every buying decision and that word is ‘value’. We like to think we will get value from something when we buy it, whether that’s a beautiful meal from food we’ve bought, feeling fabulous from wearing those new shoes, or learning how to achieve something from the coaching we have bought. Having thought about your answers to the above two exercises, you are now firmly in the world of the buyer! That was easy, wasn’t it?
A buyer’s story
I have been honoured to know some senior buyers at some very large blue chip companies, and whenever we have chatted it is really clear that the battle between a buyer and a seller should never actually be a battle. It’s so true that we often see the buyer as an enemy, and yet isn’t it true that we both actually want to be together? Our buyer is looking for a solution and we are providing a solution – imagine the chemistry when you get this right!
Our conversations together have always concluded that buyers, even in large corporates, still have needs and want good solutions. It’s not all about getting the cheapest deal. It’s a whole lot more than that – they have to consider all aspects, and for that reason, they are more likely to engage with someone who actually cares about all of their needs and understands them. They see the same old mistakes over and over when salespeople come in to sell – pushing to their deadlines and their solutions, and not the buyer’s.
So where does the perception of rivalry come from? It’s most likely to be from trainers who have taught us over the years that it’s survival of the fittest. Buyers are trained to hammer us down on price and have the upper hand! We as salespeople are taught to hold our own and make sure we get the best deal for us. Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear!
We are actually both on the same side – really, I promise. Let’s apply some common sense to this. What if the buyer pushes us so hard that the deal they get is actually not good for us? It makes us no money. It takes up a huge amount of our time for no reward. It cuts corners so that we can’t actually properly solve their problem or challenge. Does this make for a good relationship? A good start? Does this mean that this relationship could very likely be a long-term one? Let me help! The answer to all of these questions is NO.
The same applies if the buyer feels like we have overcharged them, didn’t really understand what they needed and pushed them into something they didn’t quite want. They won’t feel like we understood them, and they won’t see real value in what you’re saying. Same questions as above – same answers, NO. And now let’s take this into a life situation. Would you do this kind of deal with a friend or family member and expect to live happily ever after? The answer is NO – because in all of these scenarios we haven’t understood the ‘why’ and stepped into the world of the buyer.
You will see as this book goes on that there are fabulous ways to connect, to step into the buyer’s world and to form worthwhile relationships that are well worth taking the time to build.
It has to be said that we will never sell to everyone, but that’s why when you understand this journey it won’t matter to you, because you will be giving your solution to your ideal client and they will trust you to give them the outcome they need. This is good business, and the key is to walk away from business that doesn’t serve you. Brave but smart.
‘People buy people; people buy people they trust.’
If you enjoyed this excerpt you can buy the full version of the book at www.liveitloveitsellit.co.uk/product/book
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More about the author – Jules White on www.liveitloveitsellit.co.uk