This week I was fortunate to attend a great entrepreneur seminar in Miami that focused on Professional Selling Techniques. The first part of the lecture spoke mainly about the effective personal communication tools to use during the sales process.
The second portion of the seminar lecture focused mainly on different selling approaches entrepreneurs can utilize when selling their business to clients and/or when pitching their business to investors.
So what are a few sales techniques entrepreneurs can use to sell their product & services?
Introduction- This technique is probably what you think of most when it comes to sales presentations. The initial “Hi” and “How Are You”, “My Name is…” is what comes to mind when using the introduction technique to sell one’s product.
Basic at most, but very crucial when making a great first impression. I always think of this selling style as a potential icebreaking method for everyone involved.
Product-Based– This technique is a great one to use because it involves explaining all of the various technical aspects, as well as the ins and outs of your product. This is helpful when some of your customers are more analytic-based and want to know the exact features of a product or service they’re buying.
The only way this technique might not be 100% effective is if you get too caught up in what your product or service offers and not how this product relates to your customer. Forgetting the value your product has in the lives of your customer is a crucial mistake.
A company that does this with aplomb is Apple during their product unveiling events. Apple does an excellent job of hyping their products and also giving consumers a reason to purchase it.
Customer Benefit– As I explained above, showing how your customers can benefit from your product and service is how you bridge the gap of a consumer’s perception of your product to something tangible which they can incorporate into their own lives.
Sales should always be approached with the thought of being mutually beneficial. Satisfied customers who are pleased with your products will come back time and time again if they feel they are getting something of value for their money.
Check out the Steve Jobs Apple Event Below to see how to do this:
Shock Appeal- Shock Appeal is a method of sales that should be used sparingly. Not for the reasons of creating hype for fast publicity. Yes, perhaps shocking customers with a publicity stunt every once and awhile is effective. But you shouldn’t make this the only tool you use.
A great way to receive the full benefits from this strategy is to start off your sales presentation with a percentage. For instance, perhaps your product is an eco-friendly skin lotion that repels insects.
A way that you can effectively capture your target market’s attention is to say, “Did you know that by the year 2020, 95% of the U.S. will be effected by Zika Carrying Mosquitoes?”. You could then go into detail about how your product solves this dilemma for your consumer.
Flattery– Another tactic that should be used sparingly in accordance with other sales techniques. Spewing out compliment after compliment is a great way to seem insincere to your customers.
Successful selling is all about integrity and when you lose integrity through excessive flattery, customers and/or investors lose interest in what you have to say about your business.
A clever, but rapport building way to flatter is to find areas of commonality. For instance, say your client walks into your office wearing the same class ring as your Alma Mater. You could easily point out to this client that you both are graduates of this school.
Perhaps you could even reminisce abut your college years and utilize the first sales technique of ‘Introduction’ as you do this.