These are the three traditional ways of off-line selling:
These prospects are then qualified, based on their urgency to buy, and their ability to qualify for credit (if applicable). Then there is a sales pitch, during which the salesperson presents his company’s products or services.
As the salesperson or agent, you must identify the needs and wants of these prospective clients and quickly ‘warm’ them to your offer. You must also be prepared for all their objections and reasons why they do NOT want to buy. This takes a certain amount of persistence, skill, and craft.
The Problems with Selling
People these days generally do not like to be “sold” or pitched these days. The more you persist, the more they resist. Selling the traditional way does not work like it used to. People hate to sell, and conversely, they don’t like to buy this way.
They hate to be interrupted by cold calls, and they have become inured to advertising – there is so much of it everywhere that most people ignore it. They understand old fashioned sales techniques and are well aware of how salesmen are trained, so they can resist even harder. Buyers are much more educated these days, and they usually know exactly what they want. They have freedom of choice.
In our parent’s lifetime, they did not have the resources we do today. They had to physically go out and research the product they were looking for. They would often buy their cars from the same salesman, because they liked him, and had built up a relationship with him. They trusted him. But very often salespeople were looked upon as “shady” characters who could not be trusted. These salespeople were trained to manipulate and prey on people’s weaknesses and ignorance. Consumer protection was unheard of in those days.
Today, our choices are enormous. We research what we are looking for online. We know the price of something before we leave the house, and feel insulted when we are not offered exactly what we want.
But just like our parents we want to be treated with respect, and we like to build a relationship with someone we trust. These days, we also want the experience to be pleasurable.
People do LIKE to buy!
People do like buying. They enjoy getting what they want, under their own terms, and all the more so if the process can be fun and enjoyable for them.
Fun and Enjoyable?
Back in the day, when you entered a clothing store a salesman would sidle up to you and ask if he could help. You knew he didn’t really want to HELP you; he wanted to SELL you something. Nowadays you are lucky if you can find anyone to help you! Sales has become a much more passive occupation, especially inside stores.
All major stores these days are well-stocked and spotless. Everything is organized in a way that you can find whatever you are looking for without any assistance. You are soothed by background music and nice smells. You even have the freedom to pull things off shelves and not even replace them, and try things on and leave them scrunched up in the changing rooms! Clothing sales assistants these days spend more time tidying up after you than selling you anything! There is no pressure on you to buy. Their plan is that if you didn’t buy this time, you will have had such an enjoyable experience you will buy next time.
Isn’t that method just like selling on-line today? (Apart from messing up the displays of course). Many successful online retailers understand that if a customer needs help, he has to offer useful services. If you log onto any large retail site online and look around, next time you visit, there will be a list of their suggestions, especially compiled for you. If you purchased a book about, say, dog care, there will be a list of further suggested reading in the same category! Each listing has a list of unbiased comments posted by previous buyers. How useful is that? If you were shopping to buy a specific product and it gets lousy feedback, you can make a better choice!
The days of jumping through hoops to get your payment processed online is over too. All your information is safely stored and you can very often purchase with just one click of your mouse. That is fun and enjoyable.
You are not Selling – You are Helping People Make the Right Choice
Realtors make large commissions and everyone these days is aware of that, buyers and sellers. Buying a house is the largest purchase anyone will ever make in their lifetime and the process can be painful and confusing, especially for first-time buyers.
It is essential for a realtor to build up a personal relationship with a prospective buyer or seller, and make the whole process a more pleasurable experience. A highly skilled realtor will know everything about the home-buying and selling process and will be able to answer any and all questions a prospective buyer or seller may have. For a buyer, he will have researched about local schools and transportation systems, emergency services and helpful local businesses. Why? Because he wants to address that buyer’s needs, allay any fears he might have, and help. If one particular property isn’t quite right, he will go the extra mile to find one that exactly fits a buyer’s needs. He builds a relationship.
You have to address your customer’s needs and problems. Take him by the hand and lead him to what he is looking for. If you are showing a $250,000 home to a new client you have to know everything you can about the house, and the area in which it located. You need to make the experience interesting for the client, tell them why you would buy that particular home and make your client enjoy dealing with you, and to trust your judgment.
For a person to be attractive offline, they need to be well groomed. For a company to be attractive online, they need to have a user-friendly website, with helpful features. Their follow-up emails should be carefully worded and presented.
If you put the needs and wants of your customer first, in any situation on-line or off, and stop thinking about how much money you could make, selling will become a lot easier and much more rewarding for you.
Is it worth my Time?
Attraction marketing is the best way to grow your business. You will be rewarded by becoming knowledgeable about your product or service, and your clients will benefit from your knowledge and experience. It will be worth your time. Your network of clients has been attracted to your way of doing business and they will reward you even more with their referrals.
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