Selling isn’t what it used to be. Buying isn’t either. The internet and social media have changed what we know, how much we know and how we want to be spoken to. But more than that. It’s changed the way we feel about the whole buying process. We can find information about anything now, and if we can’t, we know someone who can fill in the blanks.
When we want something, we can check the product description, know it’s features, as well who is selling it and at what price, so when we go into your store or office, what we want to know what’s in it for us if we buy it from you. After all, we have options and that gives us power.
So what’s that perceived value your product? We want to feel like we’re getting more than what the item is worth. What’s your brand promise? No. Not the manufacturers. We want to know yours. Yes, it’s subjective, but we want to feel like we’ve made the right decision to come here.
I know as salespeople, most of us have been taught our ABCs – Always Be Selling. But in this new world of ours, everything, even the sale, is about non-selling. It’s people relating to people, and businesses who have taken the time to learn why people buy and what motivates them are the ones that are reaping the benefits. Think Amazon. Think Apple.
In this new book, ‘To Sell is Human,’ Dan Pink, asserts that both the sales and non-sales techniques are essentially about service, but the non-selling approach takes into account what motivates people by their very nature, to buy. He proposes that once we key in to this approach, all of us, regardless of position, are all salespeople. In fact, he’s provided new meaning to the old ABC, which he says is valid regardless of whether you’re speaking with a prospect or trying to get your child to do his homework.
A – Attunement: the capacity to take another’s perspective, to understand their interests, and to see the world from their point of view.
B – Buoyancy: the capacity to stay afloat on what one salesman calls an “ocean of rejection
C – Clarity: the capacity to make sense of murky situations, to curate information rather than merely access it, and to move from solving existing problems to finding hidden ones.
Since people do business with people, this new take on the old acronym lets you connect to your prospects and customers on a personal level and actually build relationships that last.