This is a staple catchphrase used by every sales manager in history. But on this one, let’s give them a pass, because it is as true a statement as there has ever been stated in the sales game. It is so true in fact, that it would be considered one of the ten commandments of sales.
At what point does a sale take place?
A lot of sales professionals would probably say that a sale happens when money changes hands, or when a client takes delivery. This may be true of the sales transaction to be completed, but in actuality, a sale happens when the prospect’s perceived value of the product / service exceeds the price. Think about that for just a moment.
How many times in your life have you saved money for something you wanted to buy?
Saving up $700 for a new Beretta 9mm
Saving up $1,500 for a new Fender Stratocaster
Saving up $5,000 for a professional mentor program (BFA Apex)
Saving up $100,000 for a top-of-the-line Cadillac
Saving up the down payment on a $500,000 log cabin in Utah
We’ve all done this. If there is a point on wanting to put together the “scratch” to buy an item, then we’ve already been closed, or closed ourselves, on having our dream (insert thing). We see the value. We want it. If the money was there, we’d already have it. Sales will be lost on customers not being able to make the payment, but the price they are willing to pay is determined by the perceived value they have established in the product or service at the end of the presentation.
SELL ON THE VALUE OF PRODUCT BENEFITS, NOT ON JUSTIFYING THE PRICE
In order to build value, you must discuss the benefits of your product or service. Benefits have value, features cost money. If you are just rattling off a series of features, then all you are doing is driving up the price in the customer’s mind. Stating the benefit of what the feature does, and tying that benefit to the client’s needs will build value.
Here’s a story about value:
As a member of a professional mentor program called Apex (by Break Free Academy), we occasionally have meetings. At my very first meeting, I sat with three successful men. During our light dinner, these three fellas were talking about the cost and logistics of owning a private jet. There was only one moment in which the price was brought up. The rest of the conversation revolved around the benefits of owning a plane that would cost over a million dollars. If you fly often enough, having your own plane can save you a ton of time and hassle. First of all, you buy a plane in the same manner you buy a house, so you’re most likely financing let’s say $1,500,000. Second let’s look at the benefits: business tax write-off of the costs & depreciation – Partner with others and now you’re each lowering the costs – Bypass all the crappy experience that goes along with commercial air travel – You set your schedule, instead of being at the mercy of the airlines. Those are just some of the benefits received if you were to spend over a millions dollar on your own plane. Cost is certainly a factor in owning your own plan, otherwise more people would go out and buy one. But this conversation wasn’t about justifying the price of a plane, it was about the value of a private plane.
To visualize the idea of value exceeding price, take a look at this:
In all transactions, a customer has a “line” if you will, that represents their expectation & price about what they are shopping for. In order for the prospect to be “sold,” then either the need or the value of the item must be greater than their “line.” Or you must drop the price down to their value level. As a salesperson, you are the client’s partner in achievement of your client’s goals. In order to do that, you need to know where they are going, and how they want to get there. Once you know those two things, it’s then your job to construct the roadmap on their behalf.
To create a value proposition, which is a unique point of view from the customer about the product or service, you must know what benefit they hold in the most esteem. The key elements come from the list below, but the main value will be in what pain the customer is having, and how your product or service alleviates that pain. Creating the greatest overall value will come from understanding the right combination of appeals, and by presenting the value proposition as a custom fit to the prospective customer’s wants and needs. You will need to understand their decision making process.
Product or Service Appeals that will Increase Value:
Asset – Will the product or service have an increased monetary value?
Ease of Use – IS the product or service easier to use than the competition?
Information – Does the product or service provide much needed information?
Service – Does the product or service provide a much needed service element?
Stability – Does the product or service company have a long standing track record, or reputation?
Support – Does the product or service provide a protection; which can be physical or monetary?
By highlighting the strongest appeal to your client, you are crafting your offer as their best solution.
Remember to keep it simple. #itaintrocketsurgey
Connect with Brian McKittrick