Instead of calling this the 5 selling fundamentals, maybe I should call it, “why Johnny can’t sell.” I’ll forgo that phrase but I will say this: “danger ahead.” If you do without the 5 selling fundamentals, you enter the danger zone of selling. This danger zone of selling is the intersection of extreme negotiation, heavy discounting, lost sales, and bad prospects. Yes, that intersection exists. I’ll share more about this sales intersection in the coming week, but now back to the movie…
The 5 Selling Fundamentals:
The 5 selling fundamentals are what you need do on every sales call regardless of the form of the sales call you’re making. It can be in an email, on the phone, face-to-face, or for that matter, these also apply to text messages and voicemail.
When we get these fundamentals correct, it is amazing what can and will happen. Something crucial about these five is that you can’t do one without the other; each one builds on the other. Leave any one of them out and you’ll risk being right back in the danger zone that I described earlier.
The five fundamentals are: Continuity, Competence, Confidence, Opportunity, and Profit. I like to put them into a math formula: “C+C=C=O=P.” On the surface, it seems both logical and simple, but actually putting these 5 into practice is anything but easy.
Continuity: This is about repetition. It’s about not thinking that just a couple calls to a prospect is all you need to do. If after a couple of calls, the prospect is not engaging with you then they must not be interested. That is a big lie! There’s a reason why the biggest brand names spend billions on advertising; they know they need to keep their name out there. If big brands know they need to do that, you better not think a couple of calls is all it takes. Continuity is about your prospect seeing you enough to know you’re real and you can help them.
Competence: This fundamental is where you separate yourself from everyone else. This is about you demonstrating your intelligence to your prospect and customer but wait, it’s not about you doing all the talking. It’s about you engaging the prospect in a conversation that has them thinking. It’s not about you telling them how great you and your company are. That’s old school. New school is about the questions you ask; your goal is to take the customer to a new level of thinking and insight. That’s how you stand apart from your competitor.
Confidence: When you do the first two “C’s” well, you’ll be astounded by the level of the confidence the prospect / customer will have in you and you will have in them. Confidence cuts both ways. When there is a high degree of confidence, there’s a high degree of trust and it’s there that real value is created. We create real value when we’re trusted, because that is when the other person feels at ease to reveal everything and get to the core of their issues. Something mind-blowing happens at this step: you get to move onto fundamental #4, Opportunity.
Opportunity: Bingo! When you’re at this point, you now know the customer’s critical needs, the customer has an astounding level of confidence in you and so it becomes the perfect time to present the opportunity. Too many salespeople try to rush into putting a proposal in front of the customer and rush so fast that there is zero opportunity to create confidence. There is little confidence because the prospect hasn’t been exposed to your competence. If you fail to do the steps before opportunity, you’ll find yourself in the danger zone intersection. I guarantee it! Never, and no matter how tempting it might be, put a proposal in front of a customer before you have built confidence.
Profit: You might ask how profit could be a fundamental? It’s simple: without profit, you fail to exist. Profit is to sales what air is to all of us. We need it, and we cannot live without it. Don’t think I’m being one-sided and not considering the customer, because I am! Have you ever done business with a business that doesn’t make money? It doesn’t work for very long. Profit is the oil in the business engine and yes, the customer also makes a profit from the sale you make. Remember that customers don’t buy anything – they invest, and they invest for one reason, they expect something in return. They’re looking for some sort of gain, or a relief to a pain. Either way, they expect a positive return on their investment.
Don’t run from profit! Your job is to create profit for both you and your customer.
There you have the 5 fundamentals of selling. I talk about these in two of my books, High-Profit Prospecting and my new book A Mind For Sales. I strongly recommend you read both to help you master the 5 fundamentals of selling.
Copyright 2020, Mark Hunter “The Sales Hunter” Sales Motivation Blog. Mark Hunter is the author of High-Profit Prospecting: Powerful Strategies to Find the Best Leads and Drive Breakthrough Sales Result