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Selling is Consulting

Every small business owner has to be the main “salesperson” for the company. Adds can be run, blogs, web pages and social media can be used, but when it comes to bringing in customers, a human touch is needed to complete the transaction.

There is a reason for the human touch. Without the human touch you may get a customer. A customer typically makes a one-time buy from you. This “buy” is based on price, delivery or some other feature of your product or service. The human touch results in a client. Clients make a decision to purchase on technical direction product strategy and the predictability and stability of the vendor. A client can be yours for life. It is far more profitable to have clients rather then customers.  It takes a lot less effort and expense to market to a client that it does to generate new customers.

Selling and consulting are both words, it’s the implementation that makes the difference between getting a customer or a client. In selling you “push” a product or service; in consulting you solve a problem. A good consultant gets the client involved emotionally or allows then to participate in the product or service presentation.

The following are six steps that can be used when consulting:

  1. Identify the Requirements: Ask a leading question and then “shut up”. Listening to and understanding  needs is the foundation. Many sales people start selling before they know what the prospect needs.
  2. Understand the Importance: If you listen carefully, a prospect will tell you what is important to them. Once you know important issue, ask them Why it is important.
  3. Quantify the benefits: With paper and pencil, write down the benefits in terms of time or dollars.
  4. Consequences: Next write down the consequences, using the same  “time and dollars” issue, if nothing is done.
  5. Do a summary presentation of the four previous steps
  6. Be quiet, let them speak first and then offer understanding and support and ask for the order.

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” All businesses are living entities made up of individuals who interact and depend on each other for survival and growth.”

Have a great day!

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