In this blog, we discuss what it takes to differentiate yourself as a salesperson in the market today, and how sales and politics can often be similar. As the public tends to avoid political candidates that sound like all of the rest, the same can be said in sales.
If your salespeople sound like every other salesperson out there, how can they become the best version of themselves? If this happens to us as salespeople when we conduct our sales calls, and there is no perceived difference between our competition and us, we become a commodity.
If you listened to any of the Democratic Debates, you listened to approximately a dozen people try to convince their prospects, (the voting public), that they are different. Many people tend to think of politicians as being “all alike”.
If that happens to us as we conduct our sales calls, and there is no perceived difference between our competition and us, we become a commodity. If we are perceived as a commodity, the deciding factor usually ends up being price.
As the candidates prepare for the debates, their focus groups help guide them through how to say certain things on specific topics, with the hope that a certain phrase will resonate with their prospect, (the voting public).
In sales, we don’t have that luxury.
In order for us to stand out, be different, or be memorable (we refer to that as Sales Posturing), we need to focus on the business problems our clients, or prospects, have.
The best, and only way to do that, is by asking questions. When we get the response from the prospect, we must ask more questions to confirm and clarify the problem in terms of emotional pain and the specific dollar amount it will cost them if the problem isn’t fixed.
That’s how we become memorable, that’s how we differentiate ourselves, and that’s how we bring value to the people we meet.
Getting back to politics — over the course of the next several months, we will see many of the candidates fade into obscurity. Their message just won’t connect with the voting public. In sales, we see the same thing. Our phone calls don’t get answered, our voicemails don’t get returned, and our wonderfully crafted e-mails get ignored.
Why? Because to our prospect, or our “voters”, we just didn’t do anything to be, act, and sound different.
If I can leave you with one thing to remember before going into your sales calls, it’s this; we can’t talk our way into an opportunity, however, we can question our way into an opportunity.
The more time we spend asking questions, the less time we spend talking. When that happens, we are different and memorable. If you become exceptional at it, your chances of getting “elected” by your prospects greatly increases.
Someone needs what you do...now get out there and go find them!