A Sales Rep's Ultimate Goal
Funny how things happen all at once. A somewhat obscure topic comes up randomly and then it rears its head again shortly thereafter. It could be nothing, just a coincidence. But it could also be the Universe telling me to write a blog about it. I'm not taking any chances, so...
Sitting with my friend Jennifer this morning over coffee, she commented on the printer that she is using and how invaluable he has become. What started with just business cards has blossomed to all aspects of ink and toner on a substrate and has included products and services that you wouldn't suspect a printer could provide. “You know,” she joked, “I would even call him for a movie suggestion!”
A while later, during a conference call with some clients, a new sales rep asked the question, “How do I build longtime value within an account?”
There it was again! Twice in one morning, the subject of building a brand and becoming the go-to found its way into my conversations.
When a customer calls you and asks for an idea or opinion on something as obscure as a movie recommendation, you know you’re breathing some rare air. You are seen as a Trusted Advisor.
How do you get there? How do you build value?
By asking questions! Ask good, valuable, open-ended questions so to learn about the direction of the company, the purpose of the piece in question, and whatever. By learning about the company and its future. By paying attention. By getting right back to someone when they call. By reading an article that you think might be of interest to the customer and sending them a link. By being honest with the client and giving them the name of another vendor for a job that you can't do. By giving advice. Good advice. Sound advice. And consistently proving your worth time and time again in big ways and in little ways.
Does any of that look complicated? Seems like none of these items are particularly skill-related. In fact, your parents probably taught you most of these courtesies when you were little.
The sales rep's ultimate goal is to become trustworthy. It is reached more on a human level than it is a sales level. Become invaluable one valuable conversation at a time.
Bill Farquharson can be reached at (781) 934-7036 or email@example.com
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Bill Farquharson is a sales trainer for the graphic arts. Email him at Bill@AspireFor.com or call (781) 934-7036. Bill’s two books, The 25 Best Print Sales Tips Ever and Who’s Making Money at Digital/Inkjet Printing…and How? as well as information on his new subscription-based website, The Sales Vault are available at BillFarquharson.com.