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This is the second post in a series of six articles
First, Be Friends
The customer is looking for you, the consultant or salesperson, to be friends first. People like to buy from their friends. How would they describe the relationship? Would words like sincere, trustworthy, responsive, considerate, knowledgeable, trusted advisor be characterized? What approach you use will determine how prospects and customers, even colleagues and other business acquaintances view you.
Many Sales Pros Don’t Have a Clue
I do business with many types of people. Sometimes they are customers or clients, partners, affiliates, sponsors, employees, contractors, referrers, suppliers, and vendors. I am amazed that when I ask sales professionals what is your value proposition, they don’t have a clue. In situations where there is a partner and a customer, one needs two different value propositions, expressing different perspectives. How are yours?
Ask your Customer
What I suggest you do in the beginning, when creating a Value Proposition is ask your customer what are the benefits to them of using your product or service. You listen carefully to what is said and work that into your pitch. You do the same thing for other roles, like partners, anticipating the benefits as a different facet of the problem you’ve solved for them. Be sure your value proposition addresses questions like what are the results of the solutions and indicate some sort of economic payback for an investment of time or money.
What a Value Proposition Looks Like
Here’s an example of a value proposition, using the ImHonest solution: When someone loses a smart phone, laptop, or any valuable item, they think about the time and money it’ll take, and the pain to restore the new unit to the same condition as the old one–Applications, configurations, settings, data stores. Yuck. As a result of using ImHonest identification labels on valuables before they get lost, an owner can rest assured there is a good chance they will recover their lost items, through honesty. Our customers will be able to accept the convenient return of their lost valuables, resulting in less downtime, more productivity, and better peace of mind. For $14.95, they can manage six items for a year. The economic payback will be achieved within three days of recovering a lost item, and the whole process is administered through our online web registration site, 24/7 call center, and partnership with over 4,300 UPS Stores.
What are some outstanding value propositions you’ve used in your business?