by Arlene Pedersen for Kickfannie Sales & Marketing
Are you giving your prospects indigestion with your sales process?
Ok, I admit, it may not be the most graphically appealing distinction of mine, but you'll get my drift. Digestible Chunks - the art of giving just enough information so that your dream clients are satiated, concern- free and don't suffer from "information indigestion".
It can happen anywhere in your sales and marketing process, from a first introduction, to presenting your offer. Actually it doesn't stop there, even in the delivery of your services this can happen. Although we have the best intentions, it can backfire on us.
Why do we fall into this trap of giving too much information to our prospects? Often, we think more is better - if they knew x, y and z-but also blah, blah, blah, they would certainly do business with us. Or perhaps there is a bit of insecurity somewhere so we overcompensate by providing an abundance details – the process, the technology, whatever it is. Other times it is because we are not present and listening to who is in front of us. Instead of being a win-win, too much information just causes confusion which often leads to a “no thank you” that could have been a “yes”.
Let's take a look through the sales cycle to see where you may be causing indigestion. Don't feel bad if this sounds like it could be you, many of us have fallen into it at one time or another
While networking or cold calls: "Hi, my name is... Blah blah, word vomit...”. I experienced this with someone just the other day, and if I were to use my metaphor of eating; it would be like trying to feed someone without their mouth even being open.
Sales conversations are a dance, and often it is an interruption of something that they perceive as more important than talking to you. We need to ask permission to engage in the dance instead of forcing ourselves on people. We can invite and lead them in a conversation about their issues, and the impact of them - then be able to ask if they are open for support. We give them choice by this, and that is really important.
They are in your office waiting to meet with you: I have experienced this a lot with different companies like insurance professionals that may be a franchise or satellite office of a national company. Lots of brochures and literature overwhelms the space and your customers. Narrow it down to just a few on the services you would like to feature and sell. By doing this with some of my clients, we have been able to increase sales in specific areas with ease.
You have too many options for them to purchase. Do your homework in advance to narrow down the best options for your prospects, give them three choices instead of 20 or more. Question this method? Just think of how long it took you to order something off of a 10 page menu at a restaurant or tried to find something to watch on Netflix.
You are about to close the sale – you have given them all the information and the options. Just be quiet, don’t try to keep on selling, tell of benefits you forgot to mention. Just give them a chance to digest the information and then you can continue the dance once they respond.
Your existing clients are way easier to sell to than new clients, but every interaction can keep you moving forward together or start to decay the relationship. I can’t help but go here because I have seen seasoned service providers giving too much in each session, going over time, being too excited about all the different facets, solutions and actions. This creates overwhelm too - it can take a good client out of the game because they don’t get to win, because they can’t follow through on everything in a manageable way. Not to mention, they are probably physically exhausted by the time your meeting ends.
Take a look at your various steps and check in to see if you are losing anyone consistently, look to see if perhaps you are giving them too much to digest at once. Keep it simple, it will make a difference for both your prospects and you.
About the Contributor
Arlene Pedersen is the dynamic maven and CEO of Be Freaking Awesome. Arlene works with passionate entrepreneurs as well as non-profits to help them align their heart and message into a compelling expression. The Results: increases in global positioning, sales, customer confidence and attracting national and international sponsors and celebrities. Arlene is a 40 Under 40 award winner and her work has been featured i Wired, GQ, AZ Collector’s Edition and Much Music.
Submit Questions for Arlene to answer at email@example.com