In his book The Ultimate Sales Machine, expert Chet Holmes says, “Only three percent of potential buyers at any given time are buying now.” This may explain why so many calls end with, “Not at this time, thanks,” or “We’re fine for now.”
Sales teams often approach their work as finding who needs what, and then supplying it. But if 97% of your prospects don’t actually feel they have a need, how do you sell to them?
Sales teams must make a choice—wait until someone wants their products or services, continually chasing the 3%, or to create demand.Speak the customer’s language — Before making a sales call or sending out an email, build an in-depth understanding of the objectives motivating the person on the other end of the line. What does that organization want to accomplish? What tangible and measurable outcomes are they trying to reach? This step alone gets you and your team speaking the language of your customers. But don’t stop there.
Frame and empower—Next, frame your offer as meeting or impacting those desired outcomes. Only 3% of buyers out there may be shopping for something, but 100% of them have goals to serve. Ultimately, the sale hinges not on selling the prospect what they are shopping for, but showing them what they can do better, faster, or cheaper.
Win the invitation—Sales teams always dance a fine line between interruption and invitation. If 97% of your calls are to people who are “fine for now,” your call has interrupted them from working towards their goals. However, creating a demand means clients wish to seek you out. Win the invitation with demand-side selling strategies and build welcoming relationships for better sales.
Sales teams that create demand gain potential access to 100% of their market and understand what their prospect wants to accomplish.
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