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Favorite Quotes 2012 pt.4

  • Customers don't buy for what they want, they buy to get rid of what they don't want. Help them understand this and they may want what you're selling.
  • Don't ask questions to get answers. Ask questions to inspire the client to ask tough questions of themselves.
  • Customers buy more based on how they feel about your offering and you, than how they think about you and your offering. Unfortunately, most sales people sell in the exact opposite manner.
  • Persuasion, influence and selling starts when you understand the client, not the other way around.
  • The skinny on information, product obesity: the more you give out, the less likely you're going to get it back in. Without important client information you are vulnerable to entering the twilight zone of commodity status.
  • Too many conventional sales needlessly try hard to make the sale. Remember dating! Often the more you try to impress the less you impress.
  • Are more buying decisions made to make better that which is good, or to make better that which isn't good? How you answer that will determine whether you use a problem centric sales strategy.
  • To accelerate and speed up the sales cycle it's important to know when to fail fast.
  • Take the tell (bells and whistles) and smell (neediness) out of sell.
  • The more you sell with enthusiasm and vigor, the more your judgment, trust, objectivity, impartiality and client focus will suffer.
  • If they trust you, you make customers smarter by having them educate you and making you smarter about their most pressing issues and priorities, instead of the inverse.
  • The less customers trust you, the more they want to know about you and your product. The more customers trust you, the more they want you to know about them and their business.
  • What if the traditional selling skills that represent assets are actually deficits (closing, convincing, persistence/nagging, forced camaraderie, overflowing information, runaway enthusiasm)?
  • Out of your mouth or into your ears? If customers trust you and value and your insight which direction do they want information flowing that best serves their needs? Outbound or inbound?
  • Which will carry the day and be ultimately more effective? A customer impressed with your solution, or a customer impressed with the urgency of fixing their problem due to your insight.
  • As a sales tool PowerPort presentations and most product demonstrations can be as effective as dancing with yourself, or talking to yourself.
  • For better or for worse? Asking what could be better is not nearly as effective as asking what is getting worse or what could get worse.
  • "Most sales people don't need to sell better, they need to unlearn how to sell," says Marc Miller.
  • Was Al Einstein a great problem-centric sales person or what? "It's not that I'm so smart, it's just that I stay with the problem longer."
  • The more enthusiastically you sell and the harder you pitch, the more speech impaired your customer becomes. Remember: If the client ain't talking (dumping their issues on you) they probably ain't buying.
  • In sales your information is only as good as the messenger. The value of the message will go away very quickly, but the value of the messenger is timeless.
  • Selling is the transference of emotions when done professionally. Strategic sellers are transferring empathy (questioning and listening) to customers, and the emotion of problems are transferred back to sellers. However, most selling is a transference of spin reciprocated by defensiveness.
  • Beware Mr. and Mrs. Congeniality, customers want substance over form. If customers need more friends they can go to Facebook and LinkedIn.
  • Most traditional sales people were indispensable pre-Google. Today? What made you indispensable in the past—resource for information, often makes you indispensable today because of Google.
  • Personality sellers get too personal in the wrong areas (forced camaraderie), and not personal enough in the right areas (insight into business issues).
  • Traditional sales people don't seek reality because they believe they can create it. Good luck with that!
  • In the information economy too many sales people are hyper-connected in a superficial way, and loosely connected in a personal way.
  • Two deadly realities: Product envy drives sales people to conform. Conformism drives products to commoditization.
  • An ounce of prevention (exposure or threats) is worth more than a pound of cure (your fix).
  • Many of your existing prospects in your pipeline think they might be indecisive, but they really aren't certain!
  • You can't teach (sell) a man (prospect) anything, you can only help him discover it within—Galileo.
  • The greatest obstacle to the strategic questioning process isn't ignorance, it's the illusion of knowledge and false influence.
Richard Farrell is President of Tangent Knowledge Systems, a national sales development and training firm based in Chicago. He is the author of the upcoming book Selling has Nothing to do with Selling. He trains and speaks around the world and has authored many articles on his unique non-selling sales posture.

Phone: 773-404-7915
EMail: rfarrell@tangentknowledge.com
Web: http://www.tangentknowledge.com