Customers have no choice, they must buy. It just might not be you.
Obvious? Overly simplistic? Sure it is, but…
I was talking with someone who’s about to begin an outside sales career after years of inside sales. Our conversation reminded me when I began selling, and I was a little intimated and embarrassed calling on customers.
At that time I didn’t know customers have no choice, they must buy. There are certain understandings fundamental to selling, and business in general. This is one of them.
Skip over this one, or miss it entirely, and your selling will be out of step with customers, apologetic, and a burden to yourself.
Customers 4 Buying Options
Customers have no choice, they must buy.
Why? Because they have needs. Explicit or hidden, all customers have needs. And those needs drive customers to one of only 4 options, customers can:
- buy you & your offering
- buy your competitor’s
- buy themselves by doing it themselves (aka going in-house)
- buy time by not deciding to change, waiting for something better to come along later ( look for next week’s post LOST OPPORTUNITY COST)
Therefore, if customers must buy, then salespeople have a purpose for their existence. Here it is:
Salespeople help customers become aware of their specific needs. Or, if customers are already aware, salespeople help them clarify the implications when those needs are fully or partially resolved, or not resolved.
The question isn’t “do I, as a salesperson, have the right to contact customers?”. No, there’s an imperative for salespeople to engage customers. To help customers fulfill their purpose by helping them buy.
How do you help customers buy?