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Interactions

Process for Selling Intangibles

Selling intangible outcomes like appointments is different from selling tangible outcomes, like sofas or chairs. Selling an intangible requires a process of introducing the concept when you first realize that it will be the intended outcome of the sales interaction. This is because it is CLEAR that the customer cannot buy today – based on the answers to your questions that were intended to determine that (not your assumptions).

At that point, introduce the concept: “Since we can only accompl…

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Intended Outcomes

My program, “Sell it or Schedule it”™, is called that because the ONLY outcomes of a selling interaction is to close the sale or to arrange another contact time…in order to close the sale. To either write it up today because the customer is far enough along in their buying process to be able to confidently decide…or they aren’t! In the case of the latter, an appointment will ‘forward’ or ‘advance’ the sale so that you can close it at the next contact.

Anything else isn’t an outcome, but a step …

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Everything Old is New Again

I am often asked by showroom owners to ‘focus on fundamentals of selling’….as if there was anything else. ☺

Selling home furnishings has been a consultative selling approach for as long as I have been involved in it. The archaic ‘borax’ sales approach died out with short-sleeved salesmen with even shorter neckties… and was replaced, with people (often women) who are interested in learning about the problem or the vision and helping solve those with engagement, understanding, and knowledge. Ap…

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Equals (Product) Solution

If you are still reading this series, you have come to the summary of addition: Problem plus Priorities plus Process equals Solution.

The product solution that you create by asking questions in these three areas and combining the answers will produce a solution that will compel the customer to take action…now.

Presenting a solution that captures the essence of what matters most to the customer standing in front of you requires focus, attention, patience, and persistence. And the satisfacti…

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Process…plus….

Of the three key points, this one is most critical to know in order to direct the interaction to an outcome today – and the only outcomes that count are a sale or an appointment.

Every buyer is somewhere in their buying decision. Where they are and what they have done and what remains to be done will impact what they CAN do today. 

Surprisingly, this is the area least explored by most salespeople or considered critical in what outcome can be achieved today. And I assert that not knowing th…

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Priorities…plus….

As we did in the first blog of this series (Problems….), we will focus on one element. One element that when added to the others creates something magical. 

Priorities are those things that matter most. And there aren’t a lot of them, which is what makes them priorities. 

When working with a designer or with a retail customer, ask what the priorities of the project/product are…and limit them to THREE. 

Ask: “What are the three most important elements to you?” Then listen and take no…

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Two Steps Forward, One Step Back

Starting new practices and habits isn’t a smooth process. After the initial excitement and inspiration wears off and old habits start to call to us, we feel pulled in a couple of directions: moving toward the future that we envision and desire and being tethered to a familiar way of doing things. We start to tell ourselves that the current reality is not so bad….and maybe we just need to live with it. 

Fear. Resignation. Hopelessness. 

When we know that breakdowns will occur or we may falt…

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Expectation and Communication

I had dinner last night with a dear friend who is a brilliant cabinet maker and installer of high-end appliances. Kitchen/bath designers and appliance retailers refer him to their clients who want their products installed perfectly.

We were discussing how he gets paid (from the client) and how to best communicate that expectation. He currently asks the designer or salesperson “Has the client been told that I will collect my fee from them?” to which they always, always say “Yes!” And he usually te…

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Part 17 of 20: HubSpot Sales Statistics…With Secret Sauce Added

17.    Only 13% of customers believe sales reps understand their needs

Take the time to listen. Too many buyers complain that salespeople do not fully understand their needs and problems. You cannot sell a solution for a problem you don’t know about.

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Salespeople

It is said “Customers don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care” and listening deeply is a fundamental skill for every salesperson to take on as a process of continuous learning. Forever. Take it on as a practice, l…

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Part 16 of 20: HubSpot Sales Statistics…With Secret Sauce Added

16.    Salespeople who seek out and use referrals earn 4–5x more sales

A whopping 91 percent of customers say they would be willing to give referrals for companies and products they are happy with, but only 11 percent of salespeople ask for them!

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Salespeople Yikes! These are crazy numbers! And yet, as I read them I know that AS a salesperson, this is my weakest area. Maybe it’s habit, maybe it’s discomfort asking for more than the sale that was just closed, maybe it’s a lack of skill or languag…

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