Selling in every industry and every size business is changing so radically that every month makes a difference. What’s happening is so revolutionary that it requires totally different selling practices.
Selling is different because customers have changed. Some salespeople make it easy for customers to do business with them, while others fail to take advantage of available information, which is critical for sales today.
The important point — and the one that some in sales seem to miss — is that selling today means establishing a relationship with customers based on gathering more information about them, not simply trying to sell a specific product.
Here are examples of the changes taking place in sales today:
- Talking to customers is not nearly as critical as communicating with customers. Selling used to be based on lots of talk and little communication. Good selling today is proactive in the sense that it reflects exactly what customers want and communicates the message in ways that are acceptable to them.
- Successful salespeople today focus on making sure customers have a satisfying experience. They provide it by anticipating customer needs and meeting them in a supportive, timely fashion.
- Personal contact is not nearly as important as personalized contact. Salespeople who sit around and ask, “What can we sell them?” are asking the wrong question. The critical element in the sales process is information. What we know about customers, how well we understand them and the extent to which we are committed to finding ways to give them the experience that satisfies their needs makes all the different.