How to sell anything to anyone

by Brendon on March 21, 2005

Sell stuff.
That’s what I do. It’s what everyone does to an extent. I’m might be trying to ‘sell’ a media release to a journalist one minute, or ‘selling’ a a full advertising campaign to a client the next.
I’ve never thought I’ve been any good at it, but I’ve gotten better with experience. So much so that it’s almost intuitive now. Let me explain…………..
As the business has grown, the more staff we have put on. And seeing how they try and sell has made me realise that I actually know what I’m talking about when it comes to selling. And here’s all you have to do:
1. Ask as many questions as you need to get a full and complete understanding of what your customer wants and needs. If you sell suits and a customer walks in, don’t say “Try this suit on sir, the colour looks great and it’s a lovely fabric.”
Your questions should be along the lines of “What do you do? Do you work in an airconditioned office? Will you always wear the jacket? How often will the suit be dry-cleaned? What colour do you think looks best on you? What colour and type of shirts do you have? Etc, etc.”
A thorough analysis of your customer’s needs is critical.
2. Tell the customer his problem. “You don’t have a suit that is appropriate for the office and your new position. Appearance is very important in being perceived as management material.”
3. Then offer a solution. “Based on everything you have told me and our thorough analysis, I recommend the following………… I recommend this because the navy blue is the safest and most trusted colour. It is the ‘uniform’ of management. Your budget ensures we can have a suit with materials that will be attractive, classical and be able to weather the weekly dry-cleaning that will be required.”
4. Ask the customer to buy. “We’ve analysed your needs. We’ve come up with solutions based on your exact needs that provide the best value possible. You’ve agreed with our reasoning. Would you like to buy this suit?”
Okay, so it’s a pretty dull example! But the lesson is, hopefully, clear.
Don’t blindly ask your customer to buy before you know his needs. If you know his needs you can recommend a solution based on fact, knowledge and understanding.
And that’s the way it should be.

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